Christoffel Plantin in Cyberspace
Plantin Society: Tourguide
On Saturdays, his weekly day off, Christoffel Plantin could be found in a dusty garret in the attic of the museum building, where he experimented with fear and trembling with a personal computer and printer. Now and then he overheard the national and international experts in typography and graphic design, who, in the room next door, lectured at the Plantin Society in the morning and the afternoon. The general courses on the history of books, typefaces, prints and bindings were easy enough for him to understand, but the technical and practical lessons left him baffled. Through the ages the developments and advancements in technics and mechanics had been extraordinary and had changed the book trade for good. Hard work and perseverance (Labore et Constantia) would be his guiding principle to get to know the technological innovations and to restore his former printing and publishing company to its former glory. If he could not use the cast typefaces from his workshop anymore, could not man the presses in his printing room nor consult the humanist books in his library or sell books from his bookshop, he would set type in Indesign, ink sheets of paper with a digital printer, consult scientific articles on Wikipedia or Encyclopedia Britannica online and place and order books at Amazon.com.