From todayâ€™s mailbag:
Hi Dave! Since youâ€™ve been writing about pet peeves recently, hereâ€™s one of mine: Why are PDF documents still mostly in portrait instead of landscape orientation?
Be it eBooks, user guides for software, or anything else that is clearly intended to be viewed mainly on screen, it mostly comes in vertical orientation, requiring a lot of zooming in and out, plus some extra scrolling (if you donâ€™t have one of those fancy pivot monitors, that is).
I suppose itâ€™s mostly because programs like Word, InDesign, etc. initially come up with this page orientation because itâ€™s what weâ€™re used to; when it gets printed, itâ€™s mostly in portrait mode. Butâ€¦ who prints that kind of stuff anymore? Most of the PDFs I read never end up on paper, so it would make sense if electronic documentation came in landscape orientation. Wouldnâ€™t it?
Yes! I could not agree more. May the seeds of your idea find fertile hold in the minds of the worldâ€™s user-manual layout folk.