Another lost shape

I was visiting a print design firm and noticed a pile of freshly printed business cards that had the shape of a rectangle with one corner cut off diagonally. I was delighted: this must clearly be the card of some IT professional who wanted to play on the shape of the IBM punched card, right?

Punched Card

Wrong, of course. I asked the designer and he said this is just a nice shape for someone wishing to stand out from the usual rectangular cards, but he didn’t even recognize that this is the form factor of a punched card. In fact, he’d never even seen such a card, even though they were all too common in his parents’ youth – not only in mainframe computer installations but also in every home, since they were used for utility bills to facilitate later data processing (see here). No one who was even slightly literate in the sciences could have missed the similarity back then.

Yet another iconic shape going away into the mists of oblivion

1 Response to “Another lost shape”


  1. 1 Sheizaf

    sic transit gloria mundi

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