Re: [apps-discuss] font/*

"t.petch" <> Thu, 10 November 2011 10:11 UTC

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From: "t.petch" <>
To:, "Martin J. Dürst" <>
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Subject: Re: [apps-discuss] font/*
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My bibles say

Type(face) Family; Courier, Futura, Century Schoolbook,  ..
Typeface; one of the above with a defined
 - Style: Roman, Italic
 - Weight: Light, Semibold, Bold, ...
 - Width: Ultracondensed, Condensed, Expanded, ...
Type Font; one of the above with a defined Size
 - eg 12-point

I always think that the developers of the world's most widely used word
processing software do not understand this, when they try to persuade me to use
a different Type Family for my running heading and my running footing, which is
a glorious way of making a document really ugly, but in a way that is quite hard
to detect. Mixing Typefaces is fine, mixing families is not.

Tom Petch

p.s. I am sometimes (well, often) told I am too pedantic, but I think that a
virtue with standards:-)

----- Original Message -----
From: "Dave CROCKER" <>
To: "Martin J. Dürst" <>
Cc: <>
Sent: Thursday, November 10, 2011 5:36 AM

On 11/10/2011 12:20 PM, "Martin J. Dürst" wrote:
>> That is, typeface is the basic design (or abstraction) while typeface +
>> physical details (such as specific size) is a font?
> Not exactly. On the one hand, the italic version of times roman actually is a
> design by itself, so it can very well be seen as a typeface.
> On the other hand, specific size was important for lead type (which doesn't
> scale) and bitmap font formats. With today's outline and hinting technologies,
> most fonts are designed to work at many different sizes, so the specific size
> rather irrelevant.
> Anyway, what we are looking at is to have media types for font formats.
> affects this only marginally.

Well, I think I tracked your response and I think it made sense to me, including
the wrinkle added to the historical perspective by the 'outline' model(s).

The problem is that where it landed leaves me still unclear about the exact
difference between face and font, and it seems that it would be useful for
font/face non-geeks, like me, to be able to use the terms properly.



   Dave Crocker
   Brandenburg InternetWorking
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