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What would I use to make one of those old banners?
June 10, 2005 10:50 PM   Subscribe

You all are geeks right? Well, remember those old-school banners that everyone used to print at home for Science Projects and other stuff? You know, where the letter "A" was made up of a bunch of A's to form the letter? Where in this day and age would I get something like that done? Anyone have Print Shop Deluxe 1.0 and an old printer? Would I try some local schools?? My band's CD Release party is coming up and the whole theme of the packaging and everything is "old computer stuff". Thanks! This place rules...
posted by Wiggo to Computers & Internet (14 answers total)
 
You can still buy brand new dot-matrix printers. OKI makes them ... they're called "impact" printers now (darn kids). pretty pricey, though

Know anyone with an old continuous-reel fax machine? You could print individual letters on an inkjet/laser printer, tape 'em together, and fax them to yourself ...
posted by 5MeoCMP at 11:13 PM on June 10, 2005


Just do it on Rasterbator.
posted by sourwookie at 12:05 AM on June 11, 2005


Surely you could find an old dot-matrix printer at Goodwill, Craigslist, EBay, or even Weird Stuff. Then you'd need a computer with a parallel port.

You could also use Cygwin's banner command:
$ banner Wiggo

XXX XXX X
X X
X X
X X XXX XXXXXX XXXXXX XXXXX
X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X
X X X XXXXX XXXXX X X
X X XXXXX X X XXXXX
X X
XXXX XXXX

posted by grouse at 12:06 AM on June 11, 2005


Goddamn preview bug. I mean:

$ banner Wiggo
                                        
 XXX XXX    X                           
  X   X                                 
  X   X                                 
  X   X   XXX     XXXXXX  XXXXXX  XXXXX 
  X X X     X    X    X  X    X  X     X
  X X X     X    X    X  X    X  X     X
  X X X     X    X    X  X    X  X     X
   X X      X     XXXXX   XXXXX  X     X
   X X    XXXXX       X       X   XXXXX 
                      X       X         
                  XXXX    XXXX          

posted by grouse at 12:06 AM on June 11, 2005


You may not have enough time, but "epson dot matrix printers" on ebay brings up some pretty cheap selections. "ibm. . ." has a few too.

As for the software...good luck. I would think that it wouldn't be too hard for some programming acquaintance to be able to put something together for you.

Don't forget to leave the tractor feeds on.

on preview, what grouse said more or less.
posted by sevenless at 12:39 AM on June 11, 2005


For software, I think Figlet might be what you're looking for.
posted by chrismear at 2:12 AM on June 11, 2005


web interface for figlet with 145 fonts.
posted by ori at 2:38 AM on June 11, 2005


Never used it, but if you can run DOS stuff, you might give BannerMania [via the-underdogs.org] a try.
posted by blueberry at 2:55 AM on June 11, 2005


what i've done in the past (see, for example, the text in the background of this image) is to open a window and change the font to a low resolution, monospaced font, type what i want, and then screen-grab it (using gimp, in my case). that gives you a very small image of text in a font with clear pixels. you can then scale that image to any size and print it. exactly how you scale and smooth the image will affect what it looks like - for the old-fashioned look you want, scale with "nearest neighbour" rather than any kind of interpolation (the example image i gave has some interpolation and smoothing, but you can still see the pixel basis).
posted by andrew cooke at 6:16 AM on June 11, 2005


arrgh. sorry - that gives you pixels, not letters, which you specifically asked for. figlet might do what you want (and is cool anway). yep, it looks like the letters font does this (that file is a data file and so looks pretty odd - what you need to do is run figlet and ask it to use the "letters" font).
posted by andrew cooke at 6:22 AM on June 11, 2005


The old bsd 'banner' command has some pretty impressive (huge) results. It's made out of # marks, not letters, though.
posted by zsazsa at 6:23 AM on June 11, 2005


or select the "letters" font at the site ori gave.
posted by andrew cooke at 6:24 AM on June 11, 2005


Yeah, the BSD "banner" command is available on Mac OS X. Pipe it into bbedit and you can pretty easily change the # to the actual letter in each letter. (Search-and-replace in selection for each letter, basically.)
posted by kindall at 9:24 AM on June 11, 2005


Maybe this ASCII Generator would help? Try Font: alphabet.
posted by glibhamdreck at 10:38 AM on June 11, 2005


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