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Design, Web and Print Glossary, Terms, Definitions – D


Deboss – To press an image into paper so that it id indented. The opposite of emboss where the impression is made towards you.

Deckle Edge – A roughly finished edge on a piece of paper.

Development – Generally refers to websites; the actual building of the site, writing code and implementing the different technologies.

DHTML – Dynamic Hypertext Mark-up Language, an extension of HTML. It allows webpages to react dynamically to users input.

Die – A dies is a tool used for cutting, scoring, stamping, embossing and debossing in to or on to paper.

Die Cut – The method of cutting irregular shapes into a material using a die.

Direct Visual – Any visual that directly relates to the headline.

Dithered / Dithering – This is a method of displaying full-colour images on a display which has a reduced colour palette (e.g. 256). Patterns of approximate colours are created to give the illusion of being full-colour. Lesser-used now, but can still be seen in some web graphics where it has been used to keep the file size small.

Don’t Tell, Show – Adage for using images to demonstrate a point instead of words.

Dot Gain – When using a halftone printing method the dots can print larger on the paper when they are on the printing plate.

Dot Size – The size of the dots used in halftone printing.

Double Meaning – Using headlines or taglines with double meanings can be powerful when used correctly. e.g. “Labour isn’t working.”.

DPI – Dots-per-inch, the number of dots that make up a printed image, generally this is 300dpi for print, though higher DPIs are also used. DPI is also (though technically incorrectly) used to refer to video displays too (see PPI). Screen displays have a lower DPI than print, hence images pulled from the web generally look blocky and of poor quality when printed as they are usually produced at 72dpi. Note however that most displays use 96dpi.

Drop-Down – A menu type found on web pages. When the users clicks or moves the mouse over the menu, a drop-down appears, presenting the user with the options.

Drop-Shadow – A technique of giving a page element, such as text or an image, a fake shadow behind it to give the illusion of depth.

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