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Shahab Siavash

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Shahab Siavash
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  • Re: Foundries Allowing Modification

    So I think one of the big concerns here is how the modified font would look and then viewers (supposedly they all know the type designers by name), will judge the font designer for a lack of kerning, bad spacing,... right? But I think it will never happen like this. If someone modify a font and uses it for example in a graphic design project, 1) how people could recognize the font and the font designer if they're not into these things? I mean they don't know all the fonts and designers 2) how they figure out that it is the original font that has failed somehow or it is the result of a typographic thing that a graphic designer did to the font's glyhps? I mean there are thousands of fonts out there.

    Unless the designer specifically mentions the font and the font designer's name. 

    And do you believe in fairness as much as the EULA? If and only if the font is modified and the result isn't redistributed, how much could it hurt the designer? 
  • Re: What was the very first typeface described as “feminine”?

    Now, what was the last typeface described as "masculine"? :) 
  • Re: Plex; IBM's new font identity model

    How come they have never thought about having a typeface of their own before? Nobody cared about $1 million they had to pay to Monotype?
  • When is it worth changing the strikeout or underline position or style?

    Hi,

    I'm guessing never! Weirdly I've never thought about this. Yet we in Persian always have problems with the default position of underlines in fonts, because letters go below the baseline and it gets so messy. So normally in the web, people remove the underline and just apply styles like color. (a lot of Latin websites are also doing this, it is apparently more simple and clean. Although in Latin there are couple of letters below the baseline too.)

    But in general if it is not a webfont, which apps or programs use the font parameters and not their own built-in settings? I think Adobe uses its own. Is there a way to override? 

    For example as a fun thing, I did this with underline and strikeout, but Adobe just doesn't care.




    So it is worth changing those parameters at all?


    P.S: I realized yesterday that you can now use text-decoration-skip: ink for a webfont and do this (In Google Chrome), which is pretty cool :) And in Canary, it would be auto by default.



  • SepidKhan: An alternate for Persian/Arabic braille

    After seeing the complexity of Persian braille and the great idea of Elia Life Technology for the English (Latin) braille, I have decided to do a Persian version of their work. I have contacted the CEO of Elia Life and I have sent some info, etudes and other stuff.

    Also I am trying to do it in Iran in collaboration with the only Persian braille newspaper (Iran e Sepid) and some charities. Really appreciated if you comment on this as well.

    But why an alternate?

    Braille is 200 years old and it is estimated that only 10% or less of the blind people can use braille! Why? Because it is very hard. Braille is based on some random dots, with no order or meaning whatsoever. So a blind person should memorize all of them and translate (or transliterate) them in their heads every time. For Persian it is worse, because it is backwards.

    Another interesting statistics is only 1% of all blind or visual impaired people are born this way. Why this is important? Because about 99% of them had already seen their mother language alphabet at least once. So if we could have had a script somehow similar to the original alphabet they could learn it much easier than braille.
    They did it!

    Elia Life Technology did this after years of research and analysis. The letters are based on the Latin alphabet. They used something named ‘frames’ to make it simpler for the blinds to recognize the letters.
    There are only 3 frames: Circular, Square and a house shape. They have explained it here letter by letter.

    So I started form here. I have designed non-cursive Persian fonts before which I discussed about them here, so I thought it is something that I should do.

    You can see the letters and their equivalents in below pictures:



    Dots!
    Half of the Persian letters have dots. Dots is very important in Persian alphabet, because unlike Latin we have some groups of totally identical letters that the only thing that separate them from each other are their dots. Persian letters could have one, two or three dots.
    So I thought we could minimize the letters that has dots to their dots with a little help from the ‘frames’.
    We not only preserve the groups of similar letters by making them look-alike, but also make the learning experience easier, because you learn ب for example and you can read پ, ت and ث.

    Advantages:
    I named this new script “SepidKhan” (=ReadingWhite). Other advantages of using SepidKhan is the fact that it’s LTR, which makes translating and transliterating much faster and easier.
    The next thing is the relation between blinds and their friends and families. People can’t read braille, even 90% of blinds can’t use braille, but this new script can be learnt in less than an hour and both of them can read it.

    You can see some other benefits of using a script like this instead of braille:



    Fonts or translators?
    Braille can’t be used as a font. (I think it could be if only they didn’t make it much harder than it already is by adding grades and abbreviations and… Remember the 10%?) So even if a braille researcher, a teacher, author… wants to write some letters in braille (especially Persian) they have to use graphics or a braille translator.

    But SepidKhan is a script and a font. And because it is not a different language with different grammar or vocabulary, it can do the translation by changing the font of a standard Persian text and everybody can write with it without the need to use a software/hardware. One could think of hundreds of books or articles that can be converted to a blind-friendly script by one click.

    Important: There is no need to throw away braille for good! All those 10% that can use braille, will be using it for sure. I don’t think that a solution to help blinds to read and write should be always one thing and inevitably using Unicode braille patterns or some current hardware/software.

    It is 21st century and braille was created in the 19th! Also there are a lot of scripts and typefaces, why blind people can’t have 2 scripts (sets of letters)?

    And finally to write with this new script the Elia group came out with a Touch Printer and a Tactile Display. I hope if the Persian/Arabic version got finalized, Persians and Arabs could use those too.

    So what do you think about Elia frames and SepidKhan?

    Read this in Persian here.