We’ve been working hard on a brand new web site for FontLab and its software, and would love your feedback on the work in progress. Your opinion matters to us, whether you are our customers or our colleagues.
Right now it is still a preview: the main page and the TransType app page are the two that are more‐or‐less done, and we have folks working on the rest of it. We hope you’ll agree that these are a much‐needed makeover and give us a modern look.
Check out the new design!
Type Industry Veteran to take on VP job
Port Angeles, WA, May 1, 2014 — FontLab announced today that Thomas Phinney has joined the company as its Vice President. Mr. Phinney brings more than 15 years of experience in digital fonts, type design, product management and working with type designers to FontLab, where he will initially assume responsibility for customer relationships, evangelism and distribution for the company, as well as advising on product development and processes.
Phinney spent his last five years at Extensis as Senior Product Manager for Fonts and Typography, dealing with web fonts and font management solutions. Prior to that, he was at Adobe Systems from 1997 to 2008, ultimately as Product Manager for Fonts & Global Typography, where his work included evangelizing best practices for font creation and coördinating and evangelizing the OpenType font format standard. He is involved in the technical, design, historical, forensic and business aspects of fonts.
Phinney is also a board member of ATypI, the International Typography Association, a frequent speaker at font and typography conferences, and a regular contributor on fonts and typography to Communication Arts magazine. He has an MBA from UC Berkeley, and an MS in Graphic Arts Publishing, specializing in Design & Typography, from RIT.
“Thomas will be an invaluable addition to our team.” said Ted Harrison, President of FontLab. “His wide experience, extensive connections, effective management style, and depth of knowledge made him the best candidate for this job. We’re very happy to welcome him to Fontlab.”
For over 20 years, Fontlab Ltd., doing business as FontLab, has stayed at the forefront of digital font software by remaining devoted to developing advanced font editors and digital type products. Their full line of products is dedicated to solving the most complex digital type issues. These products include: BitFonter, FogLamp, FontLab Studio, Fontographer, ScanFont, TypeTool, TransType, FontFlasher, FONmaker, SigMaker and CompoCompiler. More information on all FontLab products can be seen at www.fontlab.com.
All current FontLab products have been tested with Mac OS X 10.9 (Mavericks). No problems were discovered by our staff, and there have been no reports of problems from any of our customers.
Specifically, the following “Mac Intel” products are fully compatible with Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks:
- FontLab Studio 5.1.4
- Fontographer 5.2.3
- TypeTool 3.1.2
- TransType 4.0.0
If you’re using an older version, we recommend updating or upgrading it.
The following products work properly in Mavericks when using the “Lion Compatibility Pack” edition of the product:
Other products and older versions of the products listed above are not or may not be compatible.
Greetings from Amsterdam! The annual ATypI conference kicked off here yesterday with near record attendance. We haven’t seen a crowd this size since the early 00s.
Day 1 had three tracks — one on non‐Latin type and another on technology — and an all‐day workshop on Indic type design. Unfortunately I didn’t arrive until the afternoon, but by that time the meeting rooms were full and the vibes were good. In the latter part of the afternoon Frank Griesshammer explained new changes in the Adobe kern feature and a bunch of neat scripts for font manipulation; Adam demonstrated colour fonts and their use in overlays using the new version 4 of TransType; and David Lemon and Werner Lemberg talked about the ongoing development of the Postscript rasterizer for mobile platforms.
In the evening we gathered in the Aula, Oude Lutherse Kerk, a beautiful historic church a few blocks away from the hotel, for some short presentations about interesting items from the EYE archives.
Day two also had three tracks: science, history/education, and workshops/meetings. The science track was mostly about legibility research. Albert Jan‐Pool talked about the new DIN 1450 signage standard just out in April. It seems that the new gold standard for height reference in legibility research is visual angle of the x‐height. No more fussing around with point sizes and the like. If you look at signage from this point of view the glyphs are actually smaller than much fine print. Takeaway: they have to be optically scaled to be more legible, just like other small print.
Continuing with the theme, Ann Bessemans told us about her development of Matilda, a font for children with poor vision. Significant finding: kids with visual impairment read fonts better if they have slightly more heterogeneity of rhythm than normal. The opposite of normally sighted children.
Sofie Beier and Mary Dyson showed their legibility research technique called RSVP, which they used with a new font called neutral test designed by Sofie to determine whether and which font design changes resulted in better legibility (Bold is worst). Sofie has even written a book on the subject, “Designing for Legibility”.
Nadine Chahine presented similar legibility research on Arabic Naskh script and came to the conclusion that increasingly complex (and beautiful) scripts actually decrease legibility.
At the end of the day we all adjourned back to the Oude Lutherse Kerk to hear Alice Rawsthorn give a great talk on where design meets life. Pithy quote: “Design can empower, or disempower, us in every aspect of our lives.” TDC then awarded Gerrit Noordzij their medal (to standing ovations) and finally it was off to the Bijzondere Collections for drinks and the opening reception.
Although Fontlab Ltd. debuted the Photofont technology some 8 years ago, the typographic community did not show much interest for multi‐color fonts or typography. In 2013, it changed. Actually, this started a few years ago with Apple introducing the color emoji font into iOS, and then Mac OS X 10.7. Now, all major industry players (Apple, Adobe, Mozilla, Google and Microsoft) have proposed their formats, which aim to extend the OpenType font format by the ability of including color glyph information. The proposals differ in many aspects. Below is a discussion of the proposals along with some personal comments.
This article is very technical. No completeness or correctness of the information presented below, and all views are personal.
The video tutorial by Adam Twardoch accompanies this article by providing a more practical take on color font creation issues.