Yesterday's Rathergate Revisited post was intended to be my last because I'm getting sick of it, but then I read some more and just decide I need to work out some more irritation. I think I stumbed upon the source of the typeface criticisims of Majikthise's epistemiology post that I sortafisked yesterday. It appears to be a mahablog post where the author blows her entire thesis out of the water in two simple sentences:
Finally, I understand the wingnuts find it astonishing that the type seen in the Killian documents can be reproduced exactly in word processing documents today. But to anyone with a rudimentary understanding of typography, this is not astonishing at all. Times Roman characters produced on a lintotype machine in 1960 will match Times Roman characters created in Microsoft Word today. If two Times Roman characters were not exactly the same, one of them would not be classic Times Roman type, but something else.
This paragraph is precisely what is wrong. As the lady herself states higher up there are distortions in photocopies which mean that you can't draw a conclusion from the copy about the precise font, fontsize etc. However as I have tried to show in my various posts, and as Charles Johnson from LGF has shown, the alignment of the text over a series of lines is 100% coincident with Microsoft Word defaults on all the documents tested. The chances of this occuring being true for a series of documents produced any other way is close to zero.
Having said that Mahablog does some decent analysis of the 4 May docuument and the animation that purports to show its recreation in word. In fact that document did cause me some trouble to reproduce (but here it is) and required me to do a lot more mucking around than the other docs did.
[One thing to note though is that this official order from the same time frame and AFB is clearly not using a proportional font in its centered top AND the address form is rather different]
However despite Mahablogs excellent points on the 4 may memo her overall thrust is wrong. What she is doing is trying to shoot down each individual quibble rather than addressing the whole collection. Its a deliberate looking at the trees rather than the forest and therefore destined to fail. Here is a short list (E&OE)
From the various posts on The Shape of Days, we have seen that each individual typewriter named cannot produced all the features seen in the memos. Both the 18 August and 4 May memos show features which no single 1970s era typewriter had in conjunction. You could either get proprtional text or raised superscriptsbut not both. Since we see memos with both (and with perfectly aligned text identical to replicas produced by MS Word) common logic indicates that these documents are forgeries.