web fonts Archives - Broken Links Archive

HTML 5 & web fonts; exciting times

With (stan¬≠dards-com¬≠pli¬≠ant) brows¬≠er inno¬≠va¬≠tion firm¬≠ly back on the agen¬≠da, there‚Äôs a lot of excit¬≠ing new tech¬≠nol¬≠o¬≠gy to get to grips with. This week, Google have thrown their weight firm¬≠ly behind HTML5, while a new start-up aims to bring web fonts to all.

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An alternative suggestion for web fonts licensing

Fol­low­ing the recent push by Microsoft and Ascen­der to revive the EOT for­mat for web fonts, debate has raged over the pros and cons of the two main alter­na­tives: embed­ding and link­ing. Richard Rut­ter came up with the idea to license fonts on a month­ly pay­ment basis, with the font being served from the sup­pli­er’s serv­er (or a trust­ed alternative).

I think there are a num­ber of poten­tial prob­lems of prac­ti­cal­i­ty with that approach, many of which have been raised in the com­ments. As a con­tri­bu­tion to the debate, I would like to offer the fol­low­ing suggestion:

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EOT as a new standard: too late?

Microsoft are try­ing to get peo­ple inter­est­ed in the old EOT embed­ded font for­mat by sub­mit­ting it to the W3C as an open stan­dard. Font foundry Ascen­der Cor­po­ra­tion are behind them. I think this would­n’t be an issue now if Microsoft had sub­mit­ted this as an open stan­dard five years ago, but that it may be too late now that their rivals are going down the route of font link­ing.


Safari 3.1 introduces web fonts for all

Apple have released Safari 3.1 for Win­dows and OS X (and Lin­ux using Wine) today, and the fea­ture that real­ly stood out for me was the intro­duc­tion of web fonts. Web­site mak­ers have been bound to the same core fonts for years now, so sud­den­ly hav­ing a huge palette to choose from is going to make an enor­mous difference!

Using them is pret¬≠ty easy. First you have to declare the fonts using the @font-face rule ‚ÄĒ and, impor¬≠tant¬≠ly, you have to declare each vari¬≠ant (weight, style, etc) indi¬≠vid¬≠u¬≠al¬≠ly by link¬≠ing to the font file involved. You can‚Äôt just link to the direc¬≠to¬≠ry and let the brows¬≠er work out the vari¬≠ants. To see what I mean, take a look at this exam¬≠ple (using Safari 3.1, of course!) and view the source to see the CSS involved.

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Aside

I‚Äôve updat¬≠ed my Speak¬≠ing page to include more con¬≠fer¬≠ences, more videos, and a lit¬≠tle on my speak¬≠ing require¬≠ments and pref¬≠er¬≠ences. I‚Äôm plan¬≠ning to cut down on the num¬≠ber of talks I give in 2014 (twelve is too many), but am always open to inter¬≠est¬≠ing offers and oppor¬≠tu¬≠ni¬≠ties, so please get in touch if you‚Äôre organ¬≠is¬≠ing an event.

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