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Lines are a long narrow band, continuous, directional. In geometry, they are defined as a series of points.

Illustration of different line types from Britannica.com



Lines help create both connections and separation between content

Lines to direct and separate in infographic (via nensi.net)


  • It can help create a path, show progress in fulfilling a task.
  • It can help organize content
  • A line on a screen can help create proximity and therefore group pieces of information together so we view them as a set.
  • It can help guide users to stay within certain areas or discourage exploration


It can be used to show when a portion of a task is completed: Everything that is done is put one side of a line and the rest you need to do is put on the other.

Line divider in a grocery store. Also helps checker know what they have left for each customer.


This can reference the idea of hanging things up on a line (like laundry or developing photographs)

Clothes hanging on a line also creates a visual line. (via solitaryspinster.com)

Lines can be a metaphor to boundaries or borders. The green line in the map below might have political meaning for some people knowledgable on the middle eastern affairs. These borders have great significance to these communities.

Israel-Palestine border


The borders created by lines are often a very strong boundary too visually directs users to group certain actions together or not. When it is used in a map, it’s a powerful way of creating community boundaries and distinctions that might not actually be there. These geographic lines are not actually experienced  when a person travels in the world, but something that they are aware of shared cultural knowledge.


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