Man who coined WYSIWYG passes away

Subject: Man who coined WYSIWYG passes away
From: "Martinek, Carla M" <CMartinek -at- zebra -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 17 Mar 2004 13:12:19 -0600

Cross-posted to Techwr-l and Framers lists.

This certainly ties in to our profession. Imagine where we'd be without our
word-processors and DTP packages.

Carla Martinek, Translation Coordinator/Editor
Zebra Technologies Corporation
333 Corporate Woods Parkway, Vernon Hills, IL 60061
tel: 847.793.5616 fax: 847.821.1795
cmartinek -at- zebra -dot- com

Devised computerized typesetting for publishing

New York Times News Service
Published March 17, 2004

John W. Seybold, a pioneer in computerized typesetting, which transformed
the publishing industry, has died at 88.

Mr. Seybold died Sunday in Haverford, Pa., according to his son, Andrew.

In 1963, Mr. Seybold, a longtime printing industry executive in
Philadelphia, visited The Palm Beach Post, where he saw a primitive
computerized hyphenation system to help printers decide where words should

The visit proved an inspiration, and later that year he left his job at
Printing Industries of Philadelphia to found Research on Computer
Applications in the Printing and Publishing Industries, or Rocappi.

The company, created on a shoestring, did research and development on
computer typesetting techniques as well as serving as the world's first
commercial computer typesetting service bureau.

In the next seven years, his company invented and developed concepts for
creating, editing and formatting text for print or electronic distribution.

The company created a pagination program that made it possible to control
the appearance of text on a printed page with software. The task had
previously been done manually by printers who worked with individual lines
of typed text formed from hot lead.

It was Mr. Seybold, according to his son, who first used "what you see is
what you get" in reference to computerized word processing, after watching
"The Flip Wilson Show," on which Wilson used the phrase to describe his
character Geraldine.

The phrase came to be abbreviated as WYSIWYG and was popularized by computer
systems developed at the Palo Alto Research Center of Xerox in the early

Survivors also include Mr. Seybold's wife, Trudie; a second son, Jonathan;
and a daughter, Patricia.

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