Penn State Study Examines the Effect of Fonts

Penn State’s Philip Garvey, with the assistance of Wie-Yen Eie and Jennifer Klenna, conducted a study to determine which fonts are the most legible. Sixty-four subjects from 19-87 years of age viewed 64 displays using 33 fonts shown on a computer monitor. The results of this study appear in different formats. One report was published […]

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A History of the Highway Beautification Act

The International Sign Association’s Kenny Peskin wrote on article for Signs of the Times magazine in 2015 that documented the history of the landmark Highway Beautification Act on its 50th anniversary. You can access the entire article in Signs of the Times’ digital edition at https://www.signsofthetimes.com/content/the-highway-beautification-act-50-years-later

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How business profitability is enhanced by effective quality signage.

The following article originally appeared on the Small Business Administration website in February 2001, but it was subsequently removed. Frenchy’s Bistro Background: Frenchy’s Bistro is a small restaurant in southern California specializing in authentic French cuisine. Frenchy’s fronts a busy local business street, with only a sidewalk between the building facade and street curb. The […]

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Signage Sourcebook (2003)

US Small Business Administration’s Guide for Sign Use. Signage Source Book Cover (PDF – 2MB) Forward, Acknowledgement & Contents (PDF – 0.2MB) The Science of Signs Introduction: The Science of Signs (PDF – 12MB) Signs and Traffic Safety (PDF – 22.MB) The FHWA Approach (PDF – 18MB) Conspicuity and Readability Issues (PDF – 9MB) Legibility […]

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The Dollar and Cents Value of the On-Premise Sign

The following article originally appeared in the February 1977 issue of Signs of the Times magazine. By R. T. Anderson, Director of Research, National 3M, Bedford Park, Ill. This is the first of three comprehensive installments being presented as a service to the sign industry in general and to individual sign salesmen in particular. Based […]

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What has the Federal Highway Administration said about Off-premise Electronic Message Centers?

The 1965 Highway Beautification Act established federal guidelines for off-premise signs (billboards) located within 660 feet of federal highways. When “changeable Electronic Variable Message Signs (CEVMS),” (typically called electronic message centers, or EMCs, in the sign industry), began to become more commonplace, individual states began to establish agreement (Federal/State Agreements — FSAs) with the Federal Highway […]

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Texas A&M Study Shows No Correlation Between EMCs and Traffic Accidents

In 2012, Texas A&M University’s Texas Transportation Institute conducted a study to see if electronic message centers (EMCs) cause traffic accidents. Research included data from the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) own Highway Safety Information System (HSIS), a comprehensive database of traffic-accident records from several states. Researchers identified 135 cites in which EMCs had recently been […]

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What Does “Conspicuity” Mean for Signage?

Conspicuity for signage is determined by the contrast between the sign and its background. A sign must be conspicuous first, because, without it, the sign’s legibility and readability are moot points. While the appropriate size for signs is addressed on this website under the heading “How big should a sign’s letters be?”, conspicuity includes factors […]

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Study Documents the Importance of On-Premise Signs To Shoppers

Better Homes & Gardens magazine conducts annual surveys with its subscribers as part of The American Grocery Shopper Study™. Over a three-year period (2011-2013), University of Cincinnati professor Dr. James Kellaris added questions about the importance of on-premise signage. Here are the three-year summaries (presented chronologically) of “yes,” “no” and “don’t know” responses to specific statements: “One of […]

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