Weight assigned to axis, grids, and plotted graphs/curves in swell/microcapsule

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    I am a newbie and would like to confirm my understanding from the Tactile Graphic Guidelines" that while creating tactile Cartesian graphs, the grids should be assigned the least weight and the plotted curve/line/shape should have the most. Is that correct?

    Also, I see that while creating digital diagrams that can be embossed, colors can be used to make the grid lines the least distinct, even f the same weight is used for both the grid lines and plotted curves/lines itself to distinguish the two. But, I have noticed that this doesn't work while using Swell paper. In that case is it ok to distinguish the grid lines from the plotted line/curve/figure by assigning different weights or is there a specific weight that need to be used for swell paper?

    Appreciate any guidance that can be provided!!

    Donald Winiecki


    Thank you for your questions!

    Yes, in a Cartesian graph, the plotted line is the most distinct, and the grid lines are the least distinct. GSTG provides advice for all linear features of a Cartesian graph. See and Appendix F if you have more than one plotted line on a graph.

    (GSTG is the Guidlines and Standards for Tactile Graphics. You will find the most recent version on the BANA website at the following URL: https://www.brailleauthority.org/tg/web-manual/index.html)

    Regarding the thickness of lines in a Cartesian graph, GSTG Appendix F provides some examples. However, these suggestions are not specific to images made on swell paper.

    Our experts recommend the following for use with swell paper:

    • Background grid: 1pt dashed line

    • X- and Y-axis lines: 1.5pt solid line

    • Plotted line: 3pt solid line

    Our experts also suggest that you leave white space around the plotted line so the person reading the graph is able to feel the plotted line clearly.

    Regarding the use of colors on swell paper, our experts recommend that you use only black lines.

    If you have large solid areas of color in the print graph, don't try to go with solid black. It is best to use a patterned texture as shown in GSTG Appendix E.

    If a print graphic makes use of multiple colors, our experts also want to emphasize that you make sure the textures used are distinguishable from each other. Appendix E in GSTG provides guidelines on what textures can be safely used in a single tactile graphic.


    Thank you!

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