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kottke.org posts about color

Functional color

Color Matters examines four legal battles over color trademark infringement in packaging and branding, each decided by a test of “color functionality.”

The U.S. courts denied Ambrit’s request for protection of blue, on the basis that royal blue when used to package frozen desserts was functional and could not be monopolized in a trademark. The ruling stated “Royal blue is a ‘cool color;’ it is suggestive of coldness and used by a multitude of ice cream and frozen dessert producers.” Although the ruling acknowledged the issue of protecting the consumer from confusion, preventing a monopoly of a functional color was a greater issue.

(via CG Explorer)


Martian colors

Synesthesia is:

…a neurologically based phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway.

For some people, this means that numbers are associated with colors…5 is blue, 2 is red, etc. In a recent experiment, a person with synesthesia was found to experience colors associated with numbers even though they were colorblind…colors that person had never actually seen with his eyes.

That may seem strange, but what it really means is that the subject had problems with his retina that left him able to distinguish only an extremely narrow range of wavelengths when looking at most images in the world โ€” his brain was fine, but his eyes weren’t quite up to the job. But when he saw certain numbers, he experienced colors that he otherwise never saw.

He called the colors “martian colors”. (via the best thing i learned today)


Graph of the movie poster colors of

Graph of the movie poster colors of the top-grossing movies, from the brightly colored G-rated movies to the dark and fleshy NC-17 films.


Pie charts representing the flags of the world

Pie charts representing the flags of the world’s nations…the area of each color on the charts corresponds to the percentage of that color used in the respective flag. I’ll take this opportunity to again maintain that Rem Koolhaas’ barcode flag for the EU is, technically speaking, wicked awesome. (via colourlovers)


Clever technique for pinching the colors from

Clever technique for pinching the colors from famous paintings using the Match Color tool in Photoshop. “The Old Masters of painting spent years of their lives learning about color. Why let all their effort go to waste on the walls of some museum when it could be used to give you a hand with color correction?”


Colors that have stood for things for

Colors that have stood for things for a long time, like red for stop, green for money, and white for surrender.


A low wattage color palette for web

A low wattage color palette for web designers. The palette is based on the Energy Star wattage ratings for colors. (via migurski)


Matching Pantone chips to everyday objects.

Matching Pantone chips to everyday objects.


If you love color palettes and people

If you love color palettes and people who love color palettes, you’ll love COLOURlovers. Love love color colour love color love.


Color Code is a “color portrait of

Color Code is a “color portrait of the English language”. It’s a treemap visualization created by assigning over 33,000 words its own color (colors are determined by averaging the colors of images found for each word on the web). If it’s running a little slow on your machine, check out the gallery for some neat examples. By Martin Wattenberg, creator of the grandaddy treemap app, Map of the Market.


All of Franz Ferdinand’s albums will not

All of Franz Ferdinand’s albums will not have names and will only be differentiated by color. Their second album โ€” the black, red, and green one โ€” will be out in September.