20 Aug 2010 crossland   » (Journeyer)

Here are my rough notes from the TypeCon opening keynote with Roger Black. Nothing should be taken as a direct quote of the speakers who are supposedly associated with this text as live blogging is like that. Basically trust nothing. I made them for my own reference and publish them in the hope you might find them interesting but they must not be relied on. Happy hacking :P

Roger was publication designer at Rolling sotne in the 70s, NYTimes in the 80s, and an early DTP guy. 89 he did font bureau and recently he did dual web and print redesigned for wash post and sci american. also a partner in ready media, a template company for magazines, newpapers and wbesites include iPad apps

Roger Black: i enjoy the type scene most at typecon! great to be here :)

Anonymous engineer quote in 1995 "God wanted the browser font to be Times Roman." ;)

there is a whole thing happening today, i want to point at a direction tonight and explain why.

this is a great moment for type tpopel. ive been watching the drectoin of things for a while, and ive been getting out and doing thigs ahead of the curve. sometimes you makeno money doing that. you have to start somehwere and i started in ... I worked for a guy for a summer and we set type by hand, proofed it, everything was printed offset, we got monotype galleys in, get page repros - we didnt do paste up , that would have been terrible. the hybrid letterpriess got into me. inthe mid 70s i went to SF and had this weird idea that you could put centaur and legitsiano together. (?) Rolling Stone, i got there they had linotpye in 1975 and we moved to monotype with keny and harris (?) and maybe 10% of the pages were done that way - the rest were pasteup.

so i saw phototype coming along and i held to good type. jim parkinson did display fonts for rolling stone,we bought machines, we got front end systems. in 1995 i was at newsweek and we bought cytex with bitstream fonts, composing color pages digitally. what you could do 5 years later with a $5000 mac, was $1,000,000. newsweek sould for a dollar recently... we were trying to get good type in a crappy era, CRT typesetters, vector fonts were poor. i wont name the company who made em ;)

the period was figuring out what would happen next. the "PC" was meant to be The Thing. we werebeta testers for ventura publisher, running on GEM. that was sweet, things never done in DTP since. in 1987 i went to atypi with a newsletter with a palatino rip, and atypi people didnt think it was nice. we were trying hard to move into the era and keep typographic integratiy and good design. below went to FB from BStream and therest is history.

we are now at am important crossroads.

the future of type design is screen fonts. cytex terminals were beaitufl giant amchines, the first mac2s with color, we were looking at the screen, composing pages on the screen. the bitstream screen rastereiser that was sort of wizzywig, when adobe wa doing bitmaps. it was all about wizzywig. i remember laying a xerox print over a monitor and it matched, and people were so happy.

adobe were optimised for high quality printingin in postscript.

some of looked at the screen just for the screen. david berlow is the john the baptiste for this. hes been crying for screen fonts and what needs to happen.

slowly we had courier, then bitmaps, and thinking about what you could do with a bitmap. then greyscale bitmaps and if you got far enough away it want blurry any more.. .are you optimising for edge or for smooth?

david satared at screens a long time, and working with the TrueType team, the first quartz team at appl.e why are we all fixeated on wizzywig? that has messed up screen fonts seen to date. there jave been slowimprovements tho. it seems like nothing has happened but things have gotten better in recnt years. clearypte and directwrite work really well.

davids saying to move away from wizzywig and do fonts that are designed for size. our big master i nthis field is matthew carter. david starteing moving fonts to work with pixels. this kid of hinting isnt in X Y hitning until DirectWrite hits the field.

here are some comapriing with verana; getting stems equal, antiaplias and sub pixel rendering... its starting to lift off.

in the old days, we didnt think abou tit, we were used to system fonts in PC and Mac. we were happy with time roman and helvetica/arial. what we were used to. early web was a techy gamenot a designer game.

Here is my effort in 1996 yo make a web deign. This is @home roman with @Home italic and @home bold (miller, miller italic, and interstate bold, tuned for the screen.) This was the precuror of georgia that matthew carter wirk ed on with david berlow. here's a comparison of @home and georgia.

@home was a cable modem play, we had a lot of cotrol, we had out won browser, a custom netscape, we insatlled fonts on people smachines. that wa not a scalable idea.

so system fonts came back, "the lean 15 years" - and MS and apple worked hard to make corssing between the two worlds possible and then easy.

when we wanted a differn tonf,t we usedan image of Flash. Jobs tells us thats Wrong.

so this is late 90s, there are picture pointers, interstate again.

We designers "made do." instae do type , we focused on color, layout, video and interactivity.

not type.

we talked abot purting pressure on the web community to consider typographyy. web designers worked on everything else in the graphic design palette. tempalte based design, things moved along.

we were happy doing a lot of verdana. problem was, all text loks alike. problms with images and flah, earch, atency, zoom, mobiles and workflow problems.

web fonts were embraced by MS with IE4 and their own format, EOT.

i remember asking deigners to forget macs and just use EOT! but no designer would go along. this is 10 years ago, no mobile web. let the macs have fallback and go with EOT, when clearype came alongn.

rason was, it was proprietayr standard, DRM things in it. the type community was incredulous about it and it never got off thr gronud.

but we kept hoping and listening to fdavid.

when webkit added @font-face, we did it ASAP - here's MIT news and it looked great.

Firefox wasn't good, too light and too much reflow.

so we thought "let's get this right."

in FB there was argument and anxiety. "Design matter. good readabilty on the screne requiren an open and wide design - and good hinting."

until a common rendering solution, a rendering relation that is embraced everywhere, we will be all over the map. mobile is becoming very crowded, smartphones passing PCs in sales, many tablets in 2011. so we must design fonts that look good and READ.

matt carter did this 15 years ago.

so today we announced webtype.com - lots of people involved, we have 4 text fonts out today, Apres RE, a palm font from last year, Benton Modern RE (ionic #5), Benton Sans RE (we gave up "franklin" name, and ITC franklin is great) and Ibis RE. we have cyrus highsmith and other designers, we will see a lot of new fonts. we will see variations of existing fonts.

Windows will be lighter, Mac will be smoother. Mac believes they can hint a font better than you can. Get out of the way! in MS world, they let your hints in and its even better with directwrite.

typekit led the way, and now i hitnk its going to move fast.

theres an opportunity for those of us who love type.

There is a clear directoin. we started with one-to-many model. type was sold to publishers and printers. many people would read that type. that worked for 500 years.

then DTP happened and many of us in the room, it was hairraising at the time, and the model became many to many. type was sold to designers.

now we're going to a one-to-one world. we move to the consumer market.

in the early web days i heard "digerati" and "netizens" - self appointed people running web design in teh early days. "you just dont get it" they said. a pluralistic communications model is the web, and you're still doing one to many. hollywood still does that and its very good.

one to one is what a reader and a writer do. if you enjoy a mgazine, you interact with the text. you become absorbed, forget the shabby paper or the damn kindle :) you foret all about it and are just reading. the new kindle is good.

bit by bt i came to undersand that what we do ie one to one anyway.

we will be able to put typefaces out that people can own themselves. people can won the right to their own correspondence.

now you can use email, but what if you could change the font and send the font with that email?

we are very close to the idea that mobile browsers will have @font-face, we will see that in most big browsrs. then @font-face will be inemail clients. then we figure out how to license fonts to individuals using services like webtype and typekit. at a reasonable price. to use as their signature fonts. if we do this, we will change from an elite, old fashioned business structure to a modern digital communicaiton.

this will change our business, in an exponential way.

there will be many more font s- many more horrible fonts.

we can make this happen with good marketing, common snce,s en, and PRICE.

99C!

if we offer fonts at 99c a year to regular people, that will be a new direction that I am lookgin at.

Q&A?

Q: 99c a year? A: yes, we have to pay for support to adaopt to new machines... that the right price.

Q: chris l: isnt this going backwards? mobile is going to happen fast and email is going to take a long time... A: @font-face and google will ead the way on this. yahoo mail too. if it goes to MS suite or apple mail, i dont know. i think it will happen.

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