Papierformate (1923) by Walter Porstmann [in German]

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Sue Anderson
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Post by Sue Anderson » April 2nd, 2021, 7:25 am

Here's one for somebody who is mathematically inclined and can read German... Availle?
https://archive.org/details/PapierformateDieDinformateUndIhreEinfhrungInDiePraxis (1923)


Walter Porstmann (born March 8, 1886 in Geyersdorf ; † June 24, 1959 in Berlin ) was a German engineer, mathematician and standardization theorist. He is the founder of the German paper format standard. https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Porstmann

Porstmann was interested in standardizing paper sizes, and his pioneering work is the foundation of ISO 216, the international standard for paper sizes A4, A6. A10 etc.

I recently treated myself to a new printer with a fancy readout screen. Under "reduce/enlarge" there are numerous choices such as 5x7in->A4; A4->4x6in... I finally decided I'd better figure out what A4 was. It turns out ISO 216 paper sizes are based on the square root of 2.

There is a good introduction to this concept for non mathematicians like myself, sponsored by NASA, which, if only it were PD, I'd love to read for the Short Nonfiction Collection. https://pumas.nasa.gov/files/10_06_03_1.pdf The title of this paper is "Square Root of 2: Irrational, Yes! Impractical, No!"

Availle
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Post by Availle » April 17th, 2021, 7:40 pm

Sue Anderson wrote:
April 2nd, 2021, 7:25 am
Here's one for somebody who is mathematically inclined and can read German... Availle?
:shock: :roll:

I looked at it, it's not really mathematical, only has a lot of numbers. Most of the tables can be skipped I think. In the beginning, it's about the formats, then what government agency and business has already adopted it. Mildly interesting, but it's getting better towards the end when he talks about paper mills, producers of envelopes, folding paper to get to other formats etc.

Interesting that already on page 7 he says that one of the reasons to adopt the standardised formats is to be careful with the resources of the forests. And fun to read is his answer to artists who say their art will be constrained by the new formats. Essentially he says "You can still use individual formats. And if you can't adapt your art to a specific format, you're not a very good artist." :lol:

It's not pd for me or our German listeners yet, but I've bookmarked it...
Cheers, Ava.
Resident witch of LibriVox. "I ain't Nice."

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Sue Anderson
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Joined: July 24th, 2008, 11:48 am
Location: Midwest, USA
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Post by Sue Anderson » April 18th, 2021, 5:38 am

Availle wrote:
April 17th, 2021, 7:40 pm
Sue Anderson wrote:
April 2nd, 2021, 7:25 am
Here's one for somebody who is mathematically inclined and can read German... Availle?
:shock: :roll:

I looked at it, it's not really mathematical, only has a lot of numbers. Most of the tables can be skipped I think. In the beginning, it's about the formats, then what government agency and business has already adopted it. Mildly interesting, but it's getting better towards the end when he talks about paper mills, producers of envelopes, folding paper to get to other formats etc.

Interesting that already on page 7 he says that one of the reasons to adopt the standardised formats is to be careful with the resources of the forests. And fun to read is his answer to artists who say their art will be constrained by the new formats. Essentially he says "You can still use individual formats. And if you can't adapt your art to a specific format, you're not a very good artist." :lol:

It's not pd for me or our German listeners yet, but I've bookmarked it...
Availle, Many thanks for giving me such a detailed synopsis of what Walter Porstmann had to say! I appreciate your thoughtfulness! :D

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