Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The colors of money

A bank named Canada Trust has named its automated teller machines, "Green Machine." The Green Machine logo is half-clever. It's a dollar sign (same in the U.S. and Canada) that is mutated into a letter "g." This is then used in the confusing manner of an initial cap. So you can read it Green Gmachine or Reen Machine or -- with some effort -- Green Machine.

$reen $machine
That's all fine. But beyond the design is the name itself. The "Green" in the name probably refers to money. In the U.S. paper money bills are called "greenbacks" -- because the U.S. paper currency is mostly green. But in Canada, unless the bank is simply saying "This ATM is painted green," Green Machine is not appropriate because paper money here is not primarily green. Yes, the $20CAN is green, but the other bills are not green in the slightest.

Canadian dollars.

You could argue that most of the bills dispensed from the Green Machine ATMs are green $20CAN bills, but a great deal of red $50CAN bills are also dispensed. 

Red and Green Machine?

On an unrelated tangent, the $20CAN and $50CAN bills are printed on plastic. They have clear stripe areas with hologram stuff going on in the stripes. Kinda fun. And I must say that I've grown fond of the $1CAN and $2CAN coins. They are very handy.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Mystery book cover

I was in a college book store just snooping around as my wife looked for reference books.

My eye was caught by a bookshelf full of orange, white and black book covers.

It was the somewhat familiar Penguin Books look -- not really used in the United States. The shelf looked something like this:

Mock-up of books on display.
At first glance, I thought it was some kind of play on the equals (=) symbol. A gay-lesbian-transgender studies thing -- this being a college book store and all.

On closer examination, I realised the black bars were not of equal width and it dawned on me the title and author had been blocked out for some reason. 

Scan of the book cover.
I was compelled to pick up the book and look at the spine to see what it was. It was George Orwell's "1984" -- or as it says on the spine, "Nineteen Eighty-Four." 

What a fantastic design! A book without the title or the author on the cover! But it makes sense to do that for an edition of "1984."

Even though I do not need a copy of "1984," I spent $13 Canadian on this edition. I was so taken by it. 

The best part about the story is: 

After I got home and more closely examined the book cover I noticed the cover was embossed. The logo and the penguin on the bottom are embossed, and … 

Embossed. Nice.


The title and author are indeed on the cover of the book. And they are blocked out. And they are still semi-readable. 

What a fantastic design!

The title and author are there. Click for larger.
I guess this book cover is a tribute/homage to the original Penguin Books covers of the past. I'm not familiar with those book covers, I'm pretty sure they were used in Great Britain only, but in searching around the Internet, I found many representations of the old design. This "1984" cover certainly pays tribute to that design.

Picture stolen from the Internet.
And in searching the Internet for articles about this particular book cover, I found a nice article on the designer, David Pearson. This book is part of a series of reissues of George Orwell's books.

Incidentally, here -- from an Ebay auction -- is a photo of a 1955 Penguin edition of "1984."

No black bars on this one. From Ebay.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

And or plus

I just noticed that the A&E channel-- home to "Duck Dynasty" and "Bates Hotel" -- updated their logo. I liked the original logo, but thought the slanty edge of the E was taking symmetrical a little too far.
The new logo is tidied up and tighter than ever -- it got rid of the serifs on the ampersand and chopped off extraneous bits. The ampersand is now an equal to the A and the E. I like it.
I admit I didn't notice the new logo until I saw an even newer version floating around. A&E spelled A+E. The same, but different. This logo is for all the A+E networks. That includes A&E, Lifetime, Bio and the History channel.
Perhaps the new A&/+E logo is taking cues (the + and the colors) from Google Plus?
Is "+" the new "&"?

This post is sorta related to an earlier rumination about the updated name for the SciFi channel.