The students create a prototype for a bitmap font by designing letters on a grid of squares. They substitute curves and diagonals of traditional letterforms with rectilinear elements. Avoid making detailed “staircases,” which are just curves and diagonals in disguise. This exercise looks back to the 1910s and 1920s, when avant garde designers made experimental typefaces out of simple geometric parts. The Modernist collection on P22 provides original examples. The project also reflects the structure of digital technologies, from cash register receipts and LED signs to on-screen font display, showing how typeface functions as a system of elements.