I’ve traditionally been a big fan of the Meslo web fonts for coding, a variant of Apple’s ultra-popular Menlo. But that all changed when I discovered Input, a new set of fonts optimized for programming by Font Bureau. The glyphs and overall layout is gorgeous.
They offer a sans, serif, and monospaced version (I run with the default Input Mono set) and best of all, it’s free for private use.
In light of an inevitable design iteration on the iPhone next week, it’s relevant to remember others that move slowly. As Michael Bierut describes in The Design Observer, much more slowly:
And from a design point of view? Unbelievably boring. Or, I should say, unbelievably, wonderfully, perfectly, exquisitely boring. To a field that today seems to prize innovation above all else, The New Yorker makes a case for slow design: the patient, cautious, deliberate evolution of a nearly unchanging editoral format over decades. And the case they make is — let’s admit it — pretty hard to argue with.
Designer Elliot Jay Stocks talks about typographic rules on the web:
To summarize: we can hyphenate pretty well, but justification still has a way to go, so I’m afraid to say that we’re not going to be using them together the way we do in print any time soon.
88 different typefaces are mentioned on this informative Typewolf post; Avenir, Brandon Grotesque and Adelle lead the pack.
This typography learning resource has gotten a lot of buzz online and I can see why. Typekit is a well respected source of custom web fonts, and the backing of Adobe – with its many font foundries – doesn’t hurt either. You’ll find a few quick lessons, links to many external posts along with recommended book selections.
The 1910 design team posted some advice for optimal web typography on their blog. Some of it I’ve seen before, but rarely in such a concise yet helpful format. Here’s one of those “why didn’t I think of this myself” moments, regarding picking an optimal body text size:
If in doubt, just grab a camera and take a picture of the text from the desired viewing distance and compare this to a picture of a page from a regular textbook taken from 30 to 40 cm away. Alternatively hold the book somewhere between yourself and the screen while keeping one of your eyes closed. If the digital text is smaller than the printed one you’ll want to go bigger.
This typographic blog post has already been passed around tech and design circles, but it’s absolutely worth a look if you haven’t seen it. The subject matter is 2009’s Moon and it’s cool to see a lot of futuristic fonts in discussion. You’ll probably learn something about Eurostyle; I had no idea there were variants (like Microstyle) that deviated slightly from the original typeface.
To quote from the site, “loved by hipsters & lazy designers.”
Mikael Cho writing at Medium:
I came across a study by psychologist Kevin Larson. Larson has spent his career researching typefaces and recently conducted a landmark study at MIT about how font and layout affect our emotions.
In the study, 20 volunteers- half men and half women- were separated into two groups. Each group was shown a separate version of The New Yorker- one where the image placement, font, and layout were designed well and one where the layout was designed poorly.
The researchers found that readers felt bad while reading the poorly designed layout.
Good design and good typography are more than just fluff. They make us happier.
Seeing Hoefler and Frere-Jones jump into the web font game with their own custom delivery solution is super exciting. Can’t wait to see web sites jump on board this; I’d bet money the quality will be uniformly excellent.