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Custom Fonts, Font Databases, Fonts, Word Processing, Writing

General Information: In common parlance, the word font usually refers to a digital typeface for use in word processors, Internet browsers, and a multitude of other software programs. There are literally millions of different fonts available today, but the majority of typed documents on the web use just a few quite common fonts including Courier, Sans Serif, and the ubiquitous Times New Roman. It is usually on of these handful of fonts that you will see on the web today.

History: While most people usually just think of the font selections available to them in their word processing software, the font's origins date all the way back to the beginning of printed material. When the printing press was invented, the font was determined by the foundry that actually created the metal pieces that bore the letters to be printed on paper. As the techniques of printing continued to advance, it became a common practice to stick to just a few common types of fonts throughout the printing industry. This was so readers could easily read various publications without the need to adapt to a new font.

Characteristics That Identify Fonts: The parameters of any given font are not arbitrary, they are clearly differentiated or determined based on certain set of characteristics. Some of the characteristics used to define and describe a font are:
  • Weight: This characteristic is essentially a measure of the relative thickness of a font compared to its height. The term weight is used to describe the type of “impact” the font has on the page. There are various levels of weight that include hairline as the lowest weight and ultra-black/ultra at the highest weight with normal describes the absolute middle of the scale.
  • Width: This is a fairly self-explanatory characteristic. Normally the width is fairly regular among different fonts with a few exceptions. One exception being condensed and compressed fonts which are usually labeled as such in the font name
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