Glossary of Terms

Like any industry, ours uses a variety of terms. If you want to find out what they mean, you are in the right place! Simply click on a letter to see its list of terms. If the term you are looking for isn't listed in our glossary feel free to contact us so that we may help you as well as add it to our list.

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The adhesive quality of inks.


A dense, strong paper stock.

Tagged Image File Format

Tagged Image File Format is a file format for mainly storing raster images, including photographs and line art. Originally created by Aldus company for use with PostScript printing, .tiff is a popular format for high color depth (32-bit) images, along with .jpeg and .png. TIFF format (also known as .tif, for its file extension on Windows systems), is widely supported by image-manipulation applications such as Adobe Photoshop and Corel Paint Shop Pro, by desktop publishing and page layout applications, such as QuarkXPress and Adobe InDesign, and by scanning, faxing, word processing, optical character recognition (OCR), and other applications. Adobe Systems, which acquired the PageMaker publishing program from Aldus, now controls the TIFF specification.

Abbreviation: TIFF
File Extensions: .tif, .tiff
See Also: (GIF) Graphics Interchange Format, (JPEG) Joint Photographic Experts Group, (PNG) Portable Network Graphics

Tensile Strength

A paper's ability to withstand pressure.


Tera is an SI prefix in the SI system of units denoting 1012 or 1 000 000 000 000.
Confirmed in 1960, it comes from the Greek τέρας, meaning monster. It also bears a resemblance to the Greek prefix τετρα - meaning four; the coincidence of it signifying the fourth power of 1000 served as a model for the higher-order prefixes peta, exa, zetta and yotta, all of which are deliberately distorted forms of the Latin or Greek roots for the corresponding powers (fifth to eighth respectively) of 1000.
Abbreviation: T


A high quality printing paper.

The Printing Industry of the Carolinas

The Printing Industry of the Carolinas was started in 1930 as the North Carolinas Master Printers' Association. Since then it has undergone many changes over the years. To see a full list of the changes through the decades checkout their history here.

  • Abbreviation: PICA


A printing process whereby slow drying ink is applied to paper and while the ink is still wet, it is lightly dusted with a resinous powder. The paper then passes through a heat chamber where the powder melts and fuses with the ink to produce a raised surface.

Through Drier

A slower drier that dries the ink throughout without forming a hard crust.

Ticket Envelope

Envelopes used mostly for theater tickets, with no other particular usage.


A halftone screen that contains all the same sized dots.

Titanium Oxide

A bright white pigment (opaque) used for printing on metal and flexible packaging.

Toluidine Red

A red pigment with poor bleed resistance.


The rough surfaced finish of papers such as vellum or antique.


Inks that do not block out the colored inks that they print over, but instead blend with them to create intermediate colors.


Overlapping one color over a different, adjacent color (without creating a third color). The intention is to ensure that no white space is visible where the two colors meet even if there are slight variations in registration (x-y positioning) of the two colors.


  1. The edge of a printed page.
  2. In finishing, trim or trimming refers to the cutting of the finished product to the correct size.

Trim Marks

Marks in the form of short, straight lines outside the trim area. At the corners where they are perpendicular to each other (but not touching). They guide the press operator in aligning the press sheet and the cutter operator in trimming to size.

Twin Wire Machine

Fourdrinier papermaking machines with two wires, instead of a wire and felt side. This assures higher quality when two sides are used for printing.


The difference in feel and appearance of either side of a sheet of paper due to the papermaking process having a felt and wire side.

Type Size

The height of a typeface. A point equals 0.0138 inches.


Typography (from the Greek words typos = form and grapho = write) is the art and technique of selecting and arranging type styles, point sizes, line lengths, line leading, character spacing and word spacing for typeset applications. These applications can be physical or digital. The two primary functions of typography are the presentation of text in a manner that is not only easy to read but also visually engaging. The latter function of typography may be expressed in two ways: through color and the atmosphere or feel of the printed material. Other typographic issues that a typographer involved with the traditional printing press might be interested in are: paper selection, ink choice, and the printing method. Typography is performed by typographers.

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