A myriad of annual reports have to be published in Germany every year, and being rather matter-of-factly material, it is not easy to come up with a design that truly differentiates itself. For “Genuinely Basic”, DocCheck AG and antwerpes ag considered their digital roots and celebrate the evolution of the “basic” revolution with a clear analogue version of their digital values. Using ASCII art – the graphics and the images showing the employees were generated from the 95 printable characters that comprise the standardised encoding scheme – and fanfold paper, the company group presents its performance characteristics and integrates admin director Frank Antwerpes alongside all of the employees as a valuable system resource. Entirely modelled on the image resolution typical of the early days of the computer age, the appearance of the report is complemented by an included floppy disk, which turns out to be a USB stick, and a binding consisting of simple cardboard covers that are held together by two simple rubber bands.
The concept of this annual report captivates through its tremendous originality. The idea, “Back to the digital roots”, entailed reducing the design to the most basic appearance, and presenting the content in the shape of data series that are consistently inspired by the typefaces of the very first computers. This aesthetic is consequently picked up not only by the fanfold paper, which ensures easy readability and a clear overview, but also by the minimalist binding and the USB stick in floppy disk disguise.