monitoring order
The writer conceiving the page may structurally compose each with the same care as is given to the sentences and paragraphs contained therein. 
—Smith, “Text in the Book Format,” (11) 

When we ask people in our classes to write for the Web we enlarge what we mean by “composition.” None of us are unaware of the visuality of the Web, of how that initial, default, neutral grey has a different blankness than typing-paper white, of how margins and spacings between lines require more thought and action, of how the size of the Web page can be so different from the size of the paper one—and of how color and image (and animation and sound) are not at all unusual. In this writing I consider how those of us whose lives have been concerned with the composition of words, and words alone, might set about helping people in our classes think critically about composing with words and images and how that compositional ordering affects our senses of ourselves and each other. 

I am going to look at two potential sources for help in ordering the visual on the Web, writings about book design and writings about composition in art theory. Both sets of writings give me problems, but out of those problems come directions I think worth following. 

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