Typekit Project May Revolutionize Web Typography

Advances in web browsers point to a horizon full of typographic posibilities.

The Internets / ,

17 June 2009


logo_typekitIn my years of working on the web, I’ve grown accustomed to having a rather limited selection of typefaces from which to choose. This is due in large part because there are only a limited number of typefaces that are KNOWN to be on the vast majority of website visitors’ computers. Early on I was a big proponent of using Flash or embedding text into images as a means of displaying the oh-so-right typeface for the project du jour.

Over time however, I increasingly saw the benefit of sticking to the basics for a variety of reasons. In the past couple years, my attention moved towards learning the in’s and out’s of CSS as a method to creating solid typographical style using the available tools at my disposal. I already ‘got over’ the fact that I can’t use every font in the universe and happily sought out ways to best display copy using a small selection of fonts and various typographical attributes.

Enter Jeffrey Veen and a new project called Typekit. What Typekit does in a nutshell is provide a platform of licensed fonts that can be used on demand for web-only use. This is a big deal. It represents a legal and accessible means for designers to harness the subtlety of typography into their design. It represents new revenue opportunity for type foundries and the people that create fonts.

Some questions that come to mind include:

Q: Will this mean that you’ll be able to embed Futura or Helvetica Neue on the next site you’re working on?
A: I think yes, provided the font is license-able under this system.

Q: Will this mean that designers who have yet to get over the fact that they can’t select from their myriad typefaces will now have more options?
A: I think yes.

Q: Will this mean that we’re going to see a flourishing of typographical overkill as the Typekit buzz sweeps across the internets?
A: Most probably yes.

I can see a day not too far off on the horizon where we look back fondly to a day where our biggest choices were serif vs. sans-serif; Times/Georgia vs. Arial/Verdana/Helvetica. I am excited for the launch and learning more about the opportunities this advance may bring to the front-end design/development world.

+ http://typekit.com


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