Maczó Péter You are here - about the infodesign

Péter Maczó


As was my intention, based on my studies, I’ve designed a book. This volume – 328 pages with 525 illustrations – entices both the experienced graphic designer and layman on a cultural round trip. In its composition and structure I kept in mind the basic requirement of planning as it has its sense in information design. By following the system of signage for human cultures through those attributes of basic sense and direction, (physical and physiological), I arrived from the natural to the constructed environment, illustrating by use of examples of typical and unique cases of information design. A separate section discusses the history of maps and their contemporary role: from meeting places, public transport and institutions, to commercial, cultural or sport centres; stressing the importance from the point of view of information design.

The basic elements of graphic design: point, line, circle (following a logical order) form a constituent of this book just as do arrow (the most basic info-design symbol), time (the most forceful character of info graphic constituents) and colour (as a code and parameter). These will be introduced as the primary productive elements of information graphics.

The diversity of signs and signalling and the representation and conveying of information, with their many historical fascinations form a part rather of an adventure, an appetiser. Undoubtedly, the most emphasized part of the study is in writing; in the realm of visual communication the conveying of information still does not know any more unambiguous mode of expression, even today. Its prominently important component is the letter: The typeface, the characteristics, the roles and the typographic order are a decisively influential factor in the effectiveness of conveying information. The unique role of numbers is discussed in a separate section.

Another important ingredient in this field is graphic visualisation, or more precisely, the application of pictograms, explanatory figures and signs, that have an independent existence from the practice of common language (oral and written) and a resulting increased significance in international context. The book offers actual examples of signage systems used at Olympics. After showing illustrations of info-design from three periodically repeated cultural events, a series of samples selected from our constructed city environment leads to a Hungarian case-study at the end of the book: an airport, a multicultural institute and the representation of the info-design plans of a museum and documentation centre and their application in real life.

In visual communication there is a wide road that leads to infodesign areas in our time . To become acquainted with these and, given my options, to map them, giving a thorough introduction was the task I took upon myself. I examined this work from a graphic designer’s point of view, so my conclusions refer fundamentally there also.