Prior Art

A year ago I made a little widget for visualizing the additive color mixing of RGB triplets. I had been teaching a course on front-end web development, and I wanted a tool to illustrate mixing that was easier to access than the traditional many-chambered Venn diagram.

Just this week I discovered that my widget is identical to the illustrations of painter Charles Hayter in his book A New Practical Treatise on the Three Primitive Colours Assumed as a Perfect System of Rudimentary Information, published in 1826.

Figure 1: Hayter’s illustrations on tricolor theory.

See Figure 3 in Figure 1.


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