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Nick Shinn

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Nick Shinn
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  • Re: Brain Sees Words As Pictures

    But what suprises me more is why are we in this age where empirism is invalid as a method.

    We have the empiricism of the marketplace: release a font and see if it becomes popular. Clearly, those which succeed are the most readable.
  • Re: How big is the type design industry?

    There is no such thing as a type design industry, just as there is no book writing industry, film directing industry, or automobile designing industry.

    The numbers being discussed here refer primarily to the font software licencing industry.
  • Re: The vinyl records of font formats

    Vinyl is lossless. It is an analog medium that reproduces sound waves continuously, whereas digital media samples those waves, losing information in between the samples. A moot point at higher sampling rates, e.g. FLAC.

    But it could also be argued that the molecular limits of analog represent loss, in tape and vinyl.


  • Re: The vinyl records of font formats

    Essentially, people who prefer vinyl prefer the way it distorts sound, whether they realize that's what it is or not.

    “Distort” is rather a loaded word. By the same token, one might say that the process of letterpress printing “distorts” the shape of type. 

    The crucial thing is that concept, design and production be geared to a particular technology, then whatever the nature of that technology is, the product is true and authentic.

    On the simple basis of quantity of sonic information, vinyl is a lossless system that has more data than MP3s or streamed music, so one might say that such mainstream digital technologies are “low res”, especially when they are compressed to jack up the volume.



  • Re: [OTVar] Introducing OpenType variable fonts

    There is already a perfectly good technical term for this kind of thing: Metafont, coined by Donald Knuth in 1979. 
    (The classical Greek prefix meaning “beyond”—hence Metafont would cover both “restricted” and “unrestricted” implementations.)
    But every organization wants to put its own brand on the concept, hence Multiple Masters, GX and now Variable.
    So don’t kid me that “Variable” is anything other than a snappy marketing term!