Project Faces by Adobe



  • This is so funny. The first postscript fonts, before Stone? The first Linotype fonts, before Griffith? The first letterpress, the first photo fonts, the first Kroy lettering gun, the first letraset, the first bitmaps, early web fonts, and early punctuation — were all too crude to be useful to some people. Every single one of whom, are now out of business, naturally. 

  • It’s not a neat tool!
    Because it begins with badly made basic forms and then adds weight to them with no way of correcting optical problems, like the dark vertices of the M.  The output is too crude to be useful.

    I totally agree with you Max that it is light years way from creating a usable font of any quality however I could see it being used for quick mock-ups in client discussions, but from what Miquel Sousa said at Sao Paulo it appears it is not a release product and may never be.
  • Wow. No way of correcting!?

    Is the output stone? Wood? Metal? I can fix those.

    Beziers, fuggetabout them once output.;) sure, the skeletons are rong, but how would you know when they are right, anyway, rhetorically of course. 
  • Max PhillipsMax Phillips Posts: 474
    edited October 2015
    David, I meant that there was no way to make optical corrections within the app.  And this purports to make ready-to-use font files, not raw material for hand editing in a font editor. 

    And, sure, this may lead to a better quality tool down the road, but the question was whether this was a great tool as is.  Do you think it's a great tool as is?

    sure, the skeletons are rong, but how would you know when they are right, anyway, rhetorically of course.

    Not sure I follow. By looking at them?

  • It was Edgar G. Dinkleweatee, who –after he found some bones in the yellow river deposition in his backyard– had the brilliant idea to use these as skeletons for apostrophes.

  • Chris LozosChris Lozos Posts: 1,458
    Looks like Edgar has been smokin' too many joints ;-)
  • Nick ShinnNick Shinn Posts: 2,128
    Good point Max—I would therefore say that there are too many diagonals in the default skeleton here, and that something predominantly orthogonal (e.g. Futura Display) would be more appropriate.
  • Our reaction should be to make a tool that instead of producing new low quality fonts would allow to select the font the user wants based on the same or even more parameters. Large, collaborative databases of fonts could be made into a world wide directory so that we can all benefit from parametric type design.
    The Google Fonts directory already offers this mode of type selection in a basic form; on the left sidebar there are parametric sliders for weight, width and slant. 
  • "Bummer, there are no font families that match. Please try changing your criteria or hit the reset button:"

    I had no idea filtering fonts by OS/2 meta data and presenting the results to users is parametric font styling. we are done, thanks to Dave. 
  • I feel like this could be useful mostly when you want to change an existing typeface at a very minuscule degree (i.e. ±2% letterform scaling; 5% slant for a typeface without italics). —But, we already get that in InDesign or Illustrator. Plus, we don’t know what kind of typeface could work with Project Faces. Maybe it’s just simple skeletons built into the thing, in which we have no way of controlling what the sliders are based on.

    Or, I’m going to be very, very optimistic here, and say that Project Faces is Adobe’s preliminary educational effort for resurrecting MM.
  • Adobe don't deserve much appreciation for this project mainly because it is basically a copy of Prototypo. But it is an interesting move of Adobe, and the dynamic of the development of the field is also interesting, now that Fontark, Prototypo and Adobe's faces are leading the parametric type design development.

    I'm also surprised of the short-seeing of many pro type designers that "disqualify" such projects in early stages by pointing out missing features or control of this or that kind, most of the technical challenges can (if not already) be overcome quite easily and there's so much more that can be done in that respect.

    The fundamental issue, that has been pointed here too, is the fact that good type design is a true (usable-)art work, and as such it can't be substituted with a cheap and/or quick solutions, and just as handy cameras didn't kill or damaged cinema and photography no one have a reason to fear for type-design, on the contrary... with more than two years of experience with Fontark I can say that it only increases the understanding and appreciation of type design by letting designers experience it and see how demanding it is even when most technical challenges removed. (and appreciation leads to respecting copyrights and paying for quality products).

    When putting aside "moral" questions and fear for the future of type design(/ers) we're left with questions about the potential of these king of tools, who are they for and where can they get to? Wouldn't you like your work to be easier? Wouldn't you like not to be bothered with technical issues and focus on the artistic ones? (Which btw don't necessarily involved with deduction of understanding and skill, just see how lettering is flourishing lately), after all this is what technology is for.
  • Ray LarabieRay Larabie Posts: 1,374
    Wouldn't you like not to be bothered with technical issues and focus on the artistic ones?
    Absolutely. But the drawing of the alphabet is the part I don't need help with. Drawing the alphabet is the fun part of the job but only constitutes 10% of the work. The other 90% is what I'd like to have automated: creating classes, kerning, accents, weights, interpolation, obliques, OT features, cleaning up overlaps, welding ogoneks, ordinals, fractions, pointless math symbols. I'd be happy to let a machine do that stuff. Leave the fun 10% to me.

  • Kent LewKent Lew Posts: 905
    “Welding ogoneks” is part of drawing the alphabet. Just not the English alphabet.

    Well, I think it’s fun, anyway. ;-)
  • I’m still waiting for parametric outlines, not midlines.

    You must have missed it, Fontark introduced parametric outlines about a year ago

     Leave the fun 10% to me.
    Every one has his own fun 10%, and this does differ the solutions out there and make things interesting, since (apparently so far), Faces and Prototypo are made to tweak a given structured typeface, while with Fontark you can chose your fun 10% (including drawing the letters/skeletons) and let the tool automate the other  70% ;) 
  • If I send you a UFO, can you make it parametric?
    No, Fontark is independent because of it's unique glyph synchronization system (the SmartX sys). by drawing the skeletons into it you actually "program" the glyph sync... this is the fastest and simplest way we figured out to have 100% control on any parameter of your design, I will gladly demonstrate it to you, and anyone.

  • Send it over, I will create it into the system and let you check it out and play with it. Only one weight is needed.

  • Ray LarabieRay Larabie Posts: 1,374
    @Kent Lew I just did 336 ogonek welds today but yeah, I'll admit it: the first 20 or so were fun.
  • Kent LewKent Lew Posts: 905
    Hah! 336 of *anything* that repetitive in one day would definitely stop being fun. ;-)
  • Dave CrosslandDave Crossland Posts: 1,389
    edited October 2015
    I had no idea filtering fonts by OS/2 meta data
    That's not where the data is from, boss

    I’m still waiting for parametric outlines, not midlines. ... If I send you a UFO, can you make it parametric?
    Metapolator is UFO centric (loads and saves UFOv3) and works with parametric outlines. 
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