Pantone® chips

IRC is by nature a pretty geeky place. The channels #gaysfca and #gaysf are perhaps geekier than most, because of their proximity to the nexus of geekdom, Silicon Valley. For those of us who aren't so technologically-adept, a lot of it flys way over our heads. Like me, johngalt- is a graphic designer, as is Structur. We're among the minority who tend to get lost when the geek-o-meter goes off the scale. (We also use Macs by CHOICE. Because they work for what we do.)

One time on #gaysfca, when we were feeling overwhelmed by the geekspeak, johngalt- and I decided to start a thread about graphic design and prepress workflows. None of the others had any idea what we were talking about and he and I had a laugh about that. Since then, other designers or people with design experience (Structur, chico, baku) often join in.

Janeway (johngalt-'s housemate) remarked that it was sort of like we were having our own little party, to which I responded (to johngalt-) "I'll bring Pantone® chips with Hexachrome® salsa!" For those of you who don't understand why this makes designers laugh their asses off, Pantone® is a company that maintains one of the standardized colour systems used in the graphics industry. Every graphic designer has a book of Pantone® colour 'chips', much like the ones you'd get at a paint store.

They are also the people behind Hexachrome®, a new colour system that is based on six "root colours" -- the familiar CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black) of offset lithography, plus a bright green and a bright orange. Colours in the Hexachrome® system can be brighter and livelier -- spicier, if you will -- than the limitations of CMYK. Which would make for excellent salsa.