For several years, we’ve heard from some readers that the size of the type in our New York Times crossword puzzle had become too small to read easily. The puzzle appears inside our Viewpoints section on Sundays.
We always try to make sure any type we put in the newspaper is readable — otherwise, what’s the point? But the New York Times crossword had always presented a problem, mostly because of the thin font used in the puzzle when the digital files arrived here from the Times. Those files had not been easy to manipulate.
But we recently discovered a way to prepare the crossword differently, a way that allowed us to easily change the font and point size of the type. We tried it for the first time in the puzzle that published Sunday, Jan. 29.
Maybe you noticed the change.
At least two people did. We received a kind, hand-written note of thanks from Margaret Jelonek of York and her friend Ruth Schaeberle, who were excited about the change. “My friend and I were elated,” they wrote. Previously, they said they had to enlarge the puzzles before they could read them.
“THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!” they wrote. “We just hope it’s not a one-time thing.”
It is not.
As our newspaper’s width occasionally decreases, and as the world seems to be adjusting to the idea of reading microscopic type on smartphones and the like, we’re glad we were able to gain back some readability in one corner of our print publication.
And according to Margaret and Ruth, that has “made a lot of us old ‘hard-to-see-small-print’ people very happy.”