Legibility Research

Legibility Research

Every day, we read. We read to keep up on the news. We read to get on the right road to work. We read to buy our groceries. We read for business and we read for pleasure. And thanks to the advent of mobile technologies, we read in more places, and in more new ways, than ever before. As we begin to consider the aging eye in the era of mobile computing, the question of what is legible becomes extremely important. Legibility is simply the ease with which a piece of text can be "decoded" by the eye and understood by the brain. Legibility changes depending upon the environment, the characteristics of the text, and the person doing the reading. The AgeLab has recently undertaken several lines of research to examine what affects legibility in modern, text-heavy environments, especially when reading at a glance.

Clear Information Presentation (Clear-IP) Research Consortium

The Clear-IP research consortium is dedicated to examining isssues related to text legibility and general visual design using empirical, data-driven scientific evaluations. Founded by the AgeLab and Monotype, Inc., the consortium includes a growing membership from organizations in the technology and automotive sectors. Learn more about Clear-IP, or about its ongoing research projects.


The TypeTester application, developed by software engineers at the AgeLab, is designed to bring the "science of design" out of the lab and into the world. TypeTester is an Android smartphone app that allows anyone to participate in ongoing visual design tests. Our users have the chance to help us expand our understanding of text legibility "in the wild"! Learn more about TypeTester.


MIT AgeLab
1 Amherst Street, 2nd Floor
Cambridge, MA 02142
ph: 617.253.0753
email: agelabinfo@mit.edu

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