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FWIW

True story: for several years of my employment (circa 1994 – 2004), my main job responsibility was to convert many thousands of pages of our core tech doc to .pdf and publish them to our field staff, thrice a year. I went to school for it and everything. They useta call me the PDF Lady. Oh, if only I were kidding.

To this day, if Uncle B downloads a particularly awkward Adobe file, he fixes me with a cold and bitter stare.

So here’s what I think is going on. This thing looks to have been created by taking a scan of the original document as it was bound in a book (hence the falloff on the lefthand side)…that scan was then was sharpened — either over-sharpened or converted to black-and-white, fax-style — giving the type terrible black jaggies and a white halo. Note some letters (particularly where typed letters touch parts of the printed form) are grayer. The result was then superimposed over the green patterned background. I’m at a loss to explain the soft gray pencil marks; perhaps they were too pale to trigger the sharpening.

My best guess is that this image was produced by some antiquated, stupid but perfectly legitimate automated document storage and retrieval system. Godnose we in the corporate world were bombarded by startups trying to sell shit like this, particularly in the early years, so there’s no telling how much grossly expensive bad ware was hawked to the government. It was probably intended to “enhance” a scan and superimpose it over a state seal or other legitimizing watermark.

In the absence of any new information, I’m going to say: legitimate and official. Also crude, ugly and utterly uninspiring of confidence. Like an electronic vote divorced from its original paper counterpart, it’s probably real but SO easily could be effed with.

Eh…almost like they don’t want the controversy to die down.

sock it to me

April 27, 2011 — 9:29 pm
Comments: 47