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Penta Digital, Inc. July 16, 2008

An adroit mixture of everyday settings and extraordinary events.
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The world of business and finance gets skewered, as Bottom Liners tackles subjects such as foreign takeovers, office policies, getting a raise, and the fast-paced world of Wall Street.
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The off-the-wall humor of Off the Mark puts a refreshing spin on the things we see every day ... from your favorite icons to your least favorite trends, from commercials to pets to computers. Slightly skewed and just a little twisted, Off the Mark scores a bull's eye with readers looking for a laugh.
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In today's complex world of family issues, Focus on the Family provides grounded, practical advice for those dealing with family problems.
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A whimsical, slice-of-life view into life's fool-hardy moments.
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News From
John McAuley
Idea of
the Week

Design Without Geometry is Pointless
A Message From John McAuley
The Way I See It

A Not So Trivial Pursuit

In 1979, two friends – Scott Abbott and Chris Haney – sat down to enjoy a game of Scrabble. As they unpacked the board, they discovered that some of the pieces were missing. Rather than look for another game to play, they decided they should try creating a board game of their own. Two years later, the duo introduced the first prototype of what would become Trivial Pursuit.

At the time they started working on Trivial Pursuit, neither Abbott nor Haney had any experience creating games. Abbott was a sports editor for the Canadian Press in Montreal, and Haney was a photo editor for the Montreal Gazette.

The game itself met initially with a tepid response. Abbott, Haney, and their business partners – Chris's brother, John Haney, and friend, Ed Werner – sank just about everything they had into its development. The quartet pushed hard to get it released and saw their dreams come true in 1983, when sales in both Canada and the United States topped the million mark. The following year proved even more successful, as Trivial Pursuit soon became a household name.

At the time, Trivial Pursuit was viewed as an overnight success. In truth that “night” had been long, hard, and fraught with anxiety. Here's the way I see it: Overnight successes seldom happen overnight. They typically take time and involve a fair amount of sacrifice, sweat, hard work, and tears.

At Penta Digital, we understand the work you've put into building your company or career, and we realize it certainly has been no trivial pursuit. So whether you're still struggling through the overnight – or enjoying the light of the dawning day – give us a call. We want to help you look good on paper.

John McAuley
Idea of the Week
How Geometry Inspires Design

Geometry is an integral part of design from start to finish.

Architects use geometry to divide space when generating schematic designs. Artists use repetitive sequences like fractals or cubes to create rich patterns or abstract images. And design professionals use shapes, symbols, and symmetrical layouts to create pages that are balanced and visually stimulating.

As humans, we’re wired with a positive intuitive response to images that are proportional. By regulating lines and symmetry in your designs, you can create a stronger sense of relationship between elements in your design or the visual cues you’re sending. Want to make your image more engaging? Geometry can be used to position your artwork by locating the diagonals and by using the rule of thirds.

Locating the Diagonals

One of the simplest geometric design tools is to locate the diagonals in a composition.

The diagonals, from corner to corner of any square or rectangle, cross at the center of an image and naturally draw the eye to this intersection. Diagonal divides create an organizational reference point for you to use when generating layouts. Positioning key elements of your design near the cross point will naturally draw the eye, and objects should naturally balance around this optical center.


Elements along the diagonal axes will appear more visually steady and purposeful, implying direction or movement as they pull the viewer’s eye along that line. Key elements placed outside these axis lines will create a small pause for the viewer or create a sense of tension or imbalance.

Use the Rule of Thirds

The rule of thirds suggests that when a rectangle or square is divided into thirds vertically and horizontally, the four intersecting points within the composition are the optimal focus points.

Use intersecting points to draw attention to the most critical elements of your design.


For example, viewers are more naturally drawn to people’s eyes. When you place a face within your grid, try placing your subject’s eyes near the intersection point to give the image a clear focal draw. And remember that off-center compositions are more pleasing to the eye: for maximum impact, position key elements in the outside thirds of your layout rather than directly in the center.

Thought geometry was just for math class? Think again. The principles of proportion and symmetry can help you craft designs that are balanced, seamless, and striking.

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