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Rosetta webfont library

We have finally rolled out our new webfont library. This is the last step towards full commitment to providing cross-platform fonts. A bit of trivia: along the way we needed to completely rework our post-production workflow, so we could produce high-quality webfonts for all the scripts we already support on desktop (namely the complex ones such as Arabic and Indian scripts). You can imagine building new fonts for all the styles and scripts and bug-tracking each! Some of the processes we are using would not be possible for a relatively small vendor like us a year ago and we owe much gratitude to various parties who helped us to figure things out, namely Behdad Esfahbod (Google), Frank Greißhammer (Adobe), Karsten Lücke (KLTF), Georg Seifert (Glyphs), Miguel Sousa (Adobe), Adam Twardoch (FontLab), and Tomáš Znamenáček.

This change required updates to pretty much all the fonts we have. Mostly minor technical details, but in case of Eskorte, Aisha, and Skolar, these changes have been accompanied by more significant updates.

And of course, proper webfonts should be optimised for screen, i.e. ready for low resolution, as we cannot expect everyone to have high-res screens, today or tomorrow. Our goal is to have all desktop text fonts work well as text fonts on the web, which has not been the case with many other webfonts. In order to do so, we have paid extra attention to hinting and other “screen matters” and manually hinted the fonts where appropriate and financially possible.

Self-hosting webfonts

Last year, we conducted a small survey about webfonts (thanks to Smashing Magazine, Fontdeck, and Elliot Jay Stocks for spreading the word). This indicated an interesting fact that although webfont services are heavily promoted, many users prefer to have full control over their website appearance by having the fonts uploaded on their server (this is called self-hosting). We sympathise with the idea of a free and independent internet (in many ways it is similar to the idea of independent type foundries), so we decided to provide our fonts for self-hosting at very reasonable rates. This means a lot of work when it comes to technical support, but we think independence and long-term sustainability is worth it.

Screenshots

We now provide screenshots for all the fonts and various platforms (we had to develop a tool to automate this). This should make the process of picking the right webfont much easier.

We hope to introduce all our new fonts as webfonts immediately upon their release and gradually increase their quality while keeping the screen-improvement updates always free.

10 April 2014