Friday, October 07, 2005

Em-dash, I knew thee

I'm correcting some proofs. I stare minutely at academic articles and inscribe hieroglyphics into the margins when there's a missing space or a misplaced semi-colon. This is a strange task in the LaTeX era. In one way it's comforting. In another way, it's like trying to measure your eyelashes with a yard-rule.

The proofs are generated from the digital copy, which I already checked. When the proofs arrive, they have errors in them that weren't in the digital copy. I ask you.

If the proofs cannot be generated correctly from the perfect digital text, what hope do I have of introducing greater accuracy with my favoured black Uniball micro in the margins? Even ignoring the truly laughable amount of error introduced by the assumption that the typesetter, who managed to misunderstand the plain-text digital version, will understand my latest piece of graphic performance art, which translated, reads:
Delete comma insert period close up left insert left parenthesis close up right delete period insert right parenthesis close up right

Uh huh. Sure.

Jeebus. If I was going to know whackjob arcane stuff, why couldn't it be cool?

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