Volume 24, Issue 2
  • ISSN 0142-5471
  • E-ISSN: 1569-979X
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes



Design approaches to improve Thai font legibility by clarifying idealistic key features using a blur simulation method have been proposed. Specifically, the jutting out of the tail of characters and inclusion of a loop-with-serrated-line, together with sufficient character width, have been found to improve legibility. In the current study, a set of four homologous characters was presented to the parafoveal region with a short-exposure methodology to display the characters with low visual acuity. Overall, the results revealed that most of the chosen idealistic key features enhanced the legibility of characters presented in parafoveal vision. However, the detailed results revealed variation in the amount of confusion between letter pairs for each tested character. These findings suggest the need for several practical improvements by modifying the specific features of each letter. Although the results of the short-exposure and blur simulation approaches differed at times, the findings of both studies suggest possibilities for developing optimal letterforms using a combination of both methodologies.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Arai, T., Nakano, Y., Yamamoto, R., Hayashi, K., Takata, Y., Handa, A., & Inoue, S.
    (2010) Development of a “Universal Design” font with blur tolerance (2): A comparison of the readability of Ming, Gothic, and “universal design” typefaces. 3rd International Conference for Universal Design. Hamamatsu: International Association for Universal Design (IAUD).
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Beier, S. & Larson, K.
    (2010) Design improvements for frequently misrecognized letters. Information Design Journal, 18(2), 118–137. doi:  10.1075/idj.18.2.03bei
    https://doi.org/10.1075/idj.18.2.03bei [Google Scholar]
  3. Beier, S.
    (2012) Reading letters: Designing for legibility. Amsterdam: BIS Publishers.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Bouma, H.
    (1971) Visual recognition of isolated lower-case letters. Vision Research, 11(5), 459–474. 10.1016/0042‑6989(71)90087‑3
    https://doi.org/10.1016/0042-6989(71)90087-3 [Google Scholar]
  5. Dockeray, F. C. & Pillsbury, W. B.
    (1910) The span of vision in reading and the legibility of letters. Journal of Educational Psychology, 1(3), 123–131. doi:  10.1037/h0073545
    https://doi.org/10.1037/h0073545 [Google Scholar]
  6. Hakamada, H., Ohya, M., Sakai, A., Sakurada, A., Tomomi, O., & Okajima, K.
    (2011) Approach to UD font (universal design font) development. NEC Technical Journal, 6(2), 51–56.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Legge, G. E. & Bigelow, C. A.
    (2011) Does print size matter for reading? A review of findings from vision science and typography. Journal of Vision, 11(5): 8, 1–22. 10.1167/11.5.8
    https://doi.org/10.1167/11.5.8 [Google Scholar]
  8. Legge, G. E., Pelli, D. G., Rubin, G. S., & Schleske, M. M.
    (1985) Psychophysics of reading – I. Normal vision. Vision Research, 25(2), 239–252. doi:  10.1016/0042‑6989(85)90117‑8
    https://doi.org/10.1016/0042-6989(85)90117-8 [Google Scholar]
  9. Mackeben, M.
    (1999) Sutained focal attention and peripheral letter recognition. Spatial Vision, 12(1), 51–72. 10.1163/156856899X00030
    https://doi.org/10.1163/156856899X00030 [Google Scholar]
  10. (2000) Enhancement of peripheral letter recognition by typographic features. Visual Impairment Research, 2(2), 95–103. doi:  10.1076/vimr.
    https://doi.org/10.1076/vimr. [Google Scholar]
  11. Nakano, Y., Yamamoto, R., Arai, T., Inoue, S., Hayashi, K., Takata, Y., & Handa, A.
    (2010) Development of a “universal design” font with blur tolerance (1): A comparison of the readability of Ming, Gothic, and “universal design” typefaces. 3rd International Conference for Universal Design. Hamamatsu: International Association for Universal Design (IAUD).
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Panasonic Corporation
    Panasonic Corporation (2017) Panasonic universal design book. RetrievedApril 15, 2018, fromhttps://www.panasonic.com/jp/corporate/technology-design/ud/pdf/udbook_2017.pdf
  13. Phillips, J. R., Johnson, K. O., & Browne, H. M.
    (1983) A comparison of visual and two modes of tactual letter resolution. Perception & Psychophysics, 34(3), 243–249. 10.3758/BF03202952
    https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03202952 [Google Scholar]
  14. Punsongserm, R.
    (2012a) Viewpoint of using a roman-like typeface: Disappearance of singularity and legibility. Humanities Journal, 19(1), 113–145. (In Thai).
    [Google Scholar]
  15. (2012b) Typographic errors: Common mistakes of Thai typography influenced on reading. The Fine and Applied Arts Journal, 7(1), 61–80. (In Thai).
    [Google Scholar]
  16. (2015) Legibility and readability of roman-like Thai typeface. The Fine and Applied Arts Journal, 10(1), 99–128. (In Thai).
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Punsongserm, R., Sunaga, S., & Ihara, H.
    (2015) The typeface priority of Thai characters for identification: Studying based on blurring tests. 2015 Annual Conference of the 5th Branch of JSSD (71–72). Fukuoka: Kyushu University.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. (2017a) Thai typefaces (Part 1): Assumption on visibility and legibility problems. Archives of Design Research, 30(1), 5–23. doi:  10.15187/adr.2017.
    https://doi.org/10.15187/adr.2017. [Google Scholar]
  19. (2017b) Thai typefaces (Part 2): Criticism based on legibility test of some isolated characters. Archives of Design Research, 30(2), 23–45. doi:  10.15187/adr.2017.
    https://doi.org/10.15187/adr.2017. [Google Scholar]
  20. (2018) Effectiveness of the homologous thai letterforms on visibility under a simulated condition of low visual acuity. 11th International Conference Typography Day 2018. Mumbai: Sir J.J. Institute of Applied Art.
    [Google Scholar]
  21. Rattanakasamsuk, K.
    (2013) Elderly vision on legibility of Thai letters presented on LED panal. ACA2013 Thanyaburi: Blooming Color for Life (70–73). Thanyaburi: Asia Color Association and Rajamangala University of Technology Thanyaburi.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. Rayner, K., Schotter, R. E., Masson, E. J. M., Potter, C. M., & Treiman, R.
    (2016) So much to read, so little time: How do we read, and can speed reading help?Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 17(1), 4–34. doi:  10.1177/1529100615623267
    https://doi.org/10.1177/1529100615623267 [Google Scholar]
  23. Sanford, E. C.
    (1888) The relative legibility of the small letters. The American Journal of Psychology, 1(3), 402–435. 10.2307/1411012
    https://doi.org/10.2307/1411012 [Google Scholar]
  24. Schotter, R. E., Angele, B., & Rayner, K.
    (2012) Parafoveal processing in reading. Attention, Percepttion, & Psychophysics, 74, 5–35. doi:  10.3758/s13414‑011‑0219‑2
    https://doi.org/10.3758/s13414-011-0219-2 [Google Scholar]
  25. Teeravarunyou, S. & Laosirihongthong, T.
    (2003) Dynamic legibility of standard Thai fonts on traffic highway sign. 6th Asian Design International Conference. Tsukuba: Tsukuba International Congress Center.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Tinker, M. A.
    (1928) The relative legibility of letters, the digits, and of certain mathematical signs. Journal of General Psychology, 1, 472–496. 10.1080/00221309.1928.9918022
    https://doi.org/10.1080/00221309.1928.9918022 [Google Scholar]
  27. (1963) Legibility of print. Iowa: Iowa State University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  28. Waleetorncheepsawat, B., Pungrassamee, P., Obama, T., & Ikeda, M.
    (2012) Visual acuity of Thai letters with and without cataract experiencing goggles. Journal of the Color Science Association of Japan, 36, 216–217.
    [Google Scholar]
  29. Waleetorncheepsawat, B., Pungrassamee, P., Ikeda, M., & Obama, T.
    (2013) Proper-sized Thai letters on different background contrasts and illumination environment suitable for elderlies. ACA2013 Thanyaburi: Blooming Color for Life (74–77). Thanyaburi: Asia Color Association and Rajamangala University of Technology Thanyaburi.
    [Google Scholar]
  30. Waller, R.
    (2007) Comparing typefaces for airport signs. Information Design Journal, 15(1), 1–15. 10.1075/idj.15.1.01wal
    https://doi.org/10.1075/idj.15.1.01wal [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error