What is Typesetting
An Explanation of Typesetting for the New Author
Typesetting is the process, the craft, of setting the type for a document, not to be confused with typography, which is the art of designing the type. Both can trace their origins back to the Gutenberg revolution and both were concerned with the presentation of textual material in type, although each went about it in their own way.
Typesetting is the process of arranging the text and images in a page, in order to prepare them for printing. This includes selecting the most adequate style, size and composition of each and every text chain, photograph and design element. Although typesetting may not seem a very difficult procedure at first, the amount of time needed to be able to correctly prepare a document is not brief, as there are a lot of aspects the professional typesetter has to take into account in order to do his job.
A Typesetters Job
It is very important for the typesetter to convey the text and images of the document in a visually pleasing form. This includes making sure that the text is accurately distributed, that the different font sizes are specified in a coherent way, that the correct justification and fonts are selected, etc. The most important aspect of typesetting is the readability of the text, as there is a huge difference between well-formatted documents and those that do not care about its appearance. Typesetting makes all the difference in this process, especially in complex orders. Mathematical papers, for instance, are not easy to format for those who are not professional typesetters. Typesetting makes it possible for complex mathematical formulae to appear as intended, thanks to the use of applications such as Mathtype or LaTeX.
Although popular word processing programs allow users to make some basic changes in the appearance of their documents, there is an enormous difference between a professional article, or book, formatted by a professional and another one which is not. Good typesetting could make a dense document shine with a new light, while bad typesetting will make all your hard work and efforts go to waste.
The Art of Typesetting
Typography and typesetting together combine an art form and process that best succeeds when invisible. Similar to the relationship between a movie and the background music. It's primary concern is to make the document text, clear and understandable, but at the same time wants to enhance the product.
Much creative energy goes into the typesetting and it is still the subject of passionate debate among its practitioners.