Revivalism: open font conversion and other great awakenings

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Revivalism: open font conversion and other great awakenings
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This talk is an account of my project over the last few months to design an open source revival of the 1908 News Gothic font, including an outsider/newcomer’s perspective on the free font design toolchain, but with feedback on related tools as well, particularly scanning and vectorizing samples of the original typeface, and extending the original, Latin-only designs into additional orthographies. Reviving public domain works is not limited to fonts, of course, so there are potential lessons for other areas of design as well.
Keywords Libre Graphics Meeting (LGM) Libre and Open Source graphics software
Computer font Standard deviation Latin square Cycle (graph theory) Weight Multiplication sign Planning Directory service Directory service Open set Type theory Computer animation Googol Forest Data conversion Cycle (graph theory) Quicksort Extension (kinesiology)
Web 2.0 Web page Regular graph Computer animation Cycle (graph theory) Website Cue sports
Revision control Computer animation Weight Revision control Formal grammar
Covering space Point (geometry) Addition Weight Real number Weight Electronic mailing list Open set Set (mathematics) Word Process (computing) Computer animation Computer configuration Logic programming Revision control Process (computing) Formal grammar Library (computing)
Real number Source code Sampling (statistics) Process (computing) Computer font
Source code Medical imaging Scaling (geometry) Sample (statistics) Consistency Lecture/Conference Virtual machine Port scanner Belegleser Graph coloring
Revision control Source code Addition Personal digital assistant Different (Kate Ryan album) Real number Sampling (statistics)
Source code Empennage Process (computing) Computer animation Real number Sampling (statistics) Demoscene Task (computing)
Point (geometry) Area Motif (narrative) Curve Computer font Greatest element Service (economics) State of matter Code Real number Crash (computing) Computer animation Right angle Summierbarkeit Quicksort
Computer font Data model Process (computing) Service (economics) Computer animation Information Computer configuration Real number Energy level Mereology Spacetime Task (computing)
Computer font Open source File format Sampling (statistics) Parameter (computer programming) Theory Goodness of fit Process (computing) Natural number System programming Matrix (mathematics) Software testing Software testing Physical system
Distribution (mathematics) Mapping Adaptive behavior Graph (mathematics) Data storage device Public domain Open set Mereology Computer font Lattice (order) Revision control Blog Blog System programming Boundary value problem Software testing
Medical imaging Recurrence relation Word Computer animation Lecture/Conference Materialization (paranormal) Plastikkarte Public domain Plastikkarte
Point (geometry) Complex (psychology) Trail Presentation of a group Length Latin square Source code Port scanner Online help Mereology Formal language Revision control Directed set Physical system Collaborationism Cycle (graph theory) Electronic mailing list Bit Word Process (computing) Telecommunication Website Cycle (graph theory) Object (grammar) Quicksort Ranking
look at uh the title of this talk is really long
because it sort was shorter that was other I am just saying give my personal experience to the revival of an open forest which of working on spare time for the past 6 months or so the original plan was News Gothic from American Type Founders this reality weights uh marvels called news cycle and it currently covers basic Latin like a standard and a and B so the local and you can access it at that of 4th 1 pocket of come such sponsors also the the Google Web phone directory this is a simple just pulled off my own
websites show the basic work it's realist sans-serif I'm sure there are people here who you are more specific than then you can ask them but this is a
simple text from Google's web fonts specimens will the original farmers newspapers for decades and decades and was designed to be really readable small sizes which is good but also to look nice at the top of page have 1 the question what I
choose to do this primarily because as interested in learning the toolchain which Roanoke from first-hand experience even have heard a lot of thought also the
years and I chose News Gothic in particular because there wasn't an open version of it there have been some proprietary burdens of the past
and In addition to not being open they also tended to just cover rule-based character set and I also at the very few fonts open points that were available multiple weights the words of 1 so far it originally used nothing was designed in multiple weights so I thought that would be useful to other people and finally I gnostic found for by potential sponsors interested when making an as going the following library list what would be the best the most useful for other people that actually won pull was it's happened when I was supposed of I'm not sure exactly what I
expected toolchains look like there are few actually read that but it's I had in mind something what simpler which right there gives you 4 options created was based on current and package them possibly slightly more complicated by giving you some options it's there was of the whole process that I don't think it had something in mind in particular but I did expect but we do
this didn't see that as a sample from the original fonts and it's got an outline drawn around its and spend spend digitized and there was a lot that
because the original paper samples are all we have to go on but original sources are perfect a is
for 1 thing usually depend on somebody else having a copy of the specimen book and that may not be the best the original image support from and also the designs themselves might not the complete machine
example that this is what the scans look like on kind of the 3 books so it's better scale of flatbed scanner it's in color and pod occurs up so there's some work to be done just to normalize that the other thing is that you get to choose with
simple looks like so there some characters where converting extremely difficult to trace in this very difficult in addition this here you can see not only is
the available skin really really small but this case q is only in 1 place sampling you can kind itself if you look at other samples that the small version the small point-size version of this letter was designed a difference of a different size entirely so that the center is a lot shorter and balls around and if you're trying to make them all with the same answer the this suggestion the thing is
that I want to do us this extended character set which that treating adapting 1 the 1 of them was a lot of accented characters of things was a personally familiar with also how quickly agreed but there
is no z there are and I was just coincidence that the ATF samples that they present on with and have a that has the so we just need that 1 up as we will uh I pick up a few lessons along the way my difficulties mother design tasks for 1 thing auditory scene the novel processing for dish you can use it you will come to develop a love-hate relationship with that I expect and the 3rd thing is that it always used for documentation and have some examples of that or
tracing in a state this is what the axis like if you wanna trace the was blurry small right the stands at a much earlier dish once you get the imaginative
actual past designed to all the are fairly easy to use but it's it's got some other problems like it's really but I had several crashes cause the things that but it was told we could never happen and occasionally use the bottom of know there doing something simple like dragging a point further up the curve will costs in sort areas the elsewhere in the city related point it also it just means that it's like excellent frightening I don't know a be which chronologically prejudiced and celebration we should love all motif looking code that there's some problems sometimes with her services are being captured and pass along correctly and as the sum of 13 can possibly help that out make it easier to use the
other thing we have to deal with the fall portion is at it makes some tasks easier than others this is have what you get for doing spacing and kerning and I did find that portion of the process particularly easy to do the fact that modern kerning always solve but because Google's something of have a service that do automatically that's tracing and imported scan fertility also easy In part worse doing the other tasks not necessarily so the the certain options that you really need to set to package a far correctly the only accessible you several levels deep of information dialogs which does not seem like we're tools should be this is what standards and like the you I might have been designer of the data model rather than the workflow occasionally encoding as
well as things and you can see there's a bunch of hypernyms there there's different characters but they're all so now accidentally could be the same has back that several steps and the documentation didn't help me out a lot so the particular the documentation the
founders good manual that stuff not as much geared towards practical tutorials I also didn't find a lot of really easy access resources on things like true type theory out there and I made is due to keep looking but said something that I think we might to gather up for the the free fall community I also have to learn all of writing systems which I hadn't really studied so I don't use city in In a letters that I use so we had to create 1 4 upon the original it is said 26 letters characters for English I mean look up exactly where they came from nature and it look liberates and then the testing process was was pretty manual light we had to use up font matrix and some other
parameters to create test she's trying to make them look like they're original samples and maybe just document the way we do that personally could help other people this and finally put packaging appear and there's other people would
somewhat packaging and that's a big concern particularly with when X and other distribution and this distribution is from each other and different OS is entirely so this no easy answer on that uh in there was a work that absolutely you can learn a lot you can start creating things like the next spot but a sorcerer working on is an adaptation of an older font not directly the original and it's so if we can you need not served by causal boundaries because there are hundreds of years worth of part of the have been done out there by experts and if you're not creating an open version of something it it's lost entirely or taken criterion the prices of so the company finally I want to mention that there's a lot of these issues are just the need parts I I see people doing using
things with the store public domain material like maps giving Matt's blog but a lot of cool stuff with skin inkling of graphs and the decisive from
almost word there's a lot of things think historical images and woodcuts engravings and stuff like that and persuading something of playing cards because
of he realizes that the playing card designs that you see in North America anyway are public domain because were created in the 18 sixties and yet they're not all the same because listed Hurwicz cards and things so it's not just much sparser into sustainable materials and updated and this has this or that the same before for the Chinese
cycling complain about it at length to me things here and that's all if you have a question so thanks a lot for for your presentation very very cool and I'm really glad to see Africa was 1 of the people on the voted for he was gone because I'm really glad to see it out there tags
but that I wondered old lady at 1 bit at any point in the process you consider relate to make this a collaborative effort since you know it's still like a lot work is just kind of tedious and repetitious and seems to lend itself well to being and collaborative distributed after would you as a sort of art director idea is really an objection there was no thing that happened was that I had the scans and so that essentially I was just doing what what I had the original source material for it I think going forward I would certainly like and additional helper is certainly had help from people who speak other languages when it came to spacing that critics and things that I feel really qualified to decide whether or not they were right in check and things like that so only 1 release discovers that the Latin characters that there was also going forward with no Greek and Cyrillic the next on the list and I like to do use this word for more collaboration and didn't of part of part of the complexity is also we need to figure out how best to run a he thought suppose that I watch which I chose because it seems simple system of the minimal best this version control system yeah it's it's there's actually way so that from the the main website rank I'm kind lost track of where the are about was mostly the sentential edges and seriously made the 1st public release of it like a week ago so there are were communications always he had no that would agree for the questions it