The lazy brown firefox jumps over the font book

I find it astonishing that in this day and age, the contents of a web designer’s font suitcase amounts to a feeble ten or so styles. Mildly insulting when you consider the centuries of typographic development and the gazillion fonts available to us. So why is it still the case that a brand can’t display their company font over a large body of text, without fear of it being substituted by a random style such as ‘Halloween Black’?, or looking toward an unfriendly SEO web solution like Flash.

In order to guarantee consistency across the crowd of browsers and operating systems, the menu of typefaces is kept fairly bland. You’d expect more design flexibility and larger font library from the Commodore 64. On the one hand, this makes the designers job far easier, no longer bogged down under the universe of serifs and x-heights, but it also drastically limits their ability to formulate the ideal creative solution.

Thankfully the Goliath of the web, Google has taken a massive leap toward addressing this problem, by introducing an open source font library, and an API that makes it easy to use the new fonts in our web pages.

That means that along with Georgia (All about the Idea’s web font), Arial *yawn* and the rest, you’re about to start seeing a lot more Droid Serif, Molengo, Tangerine and fingers crossed ‘Halloween Black’ on the web. Along with the Google Font Directory and Google Font API, there’s also a partnership with Typekit to create something called the WebFont Loader. The WebFont Loader is a JavaScript library that works with Google’s API, but gives you more control over font loading, and even allows you to pull in fonts from other web-font sources.

Finally the web is honoring our typographic forefathers and gifting us onscreen font-astic fun times.

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2 thoughts on “The lazy brown firefox jumps over the font book

  1. I wonder how Google’s open source font library will respond to translation? There’s also no point in giving the web limitless style choices if it means further Flash style plugin problems and effect SEO

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