"Font" used to refer to a complete set of characters of one typeface (set of characters that share a common design structure) in a specific size and style. So for a typesetter from 40 years ago, a typeface would be Times New Roman, a font family within it would be Times New Roman demi-bold, and a font within that would be 12-point Times New Roman demi-bold. Since the advent of digital media, the two terms are considered synonymous, particularly since outline fonts are indifferent as to size.

Modern computer fonts are stored in font description files, which contain the information for rendering the font on the screen (or on a printed page). There are several formats for font description files, with '''Bitmap''', '''[=TrueType=]''', '''[=OpenType=]''', and '''[=PostScript=]''' being the most widely used (with ''[=TrueDoc=]'', ''Embedded [=OpenType=]'', ''Web Open Font Format'' and ''SVGT'' being variants that can be embedded in web pages). Bitmap fonts have glyphs as, well, bitmaps, at different point sizes. Most of these have only one bit to tell the system if a specified pixel is used by the character or not. Most systems will allow you to use bitmap fonts at point sizes other than what the font has, but results aren't pretty. [=PostScript=] fonts are the first vector-based font, used by printers that supported the [=PostScript=] language. The first iterations of [[UsefulNotes/MicrosoftWindows Windows]] and UsefulNotes/MacOS couldn't actually ''show them on screen'', so a bitmap version of the font was still needed. Adobe Type Manager, available for Mac OS and Windows, would let you see the fonts (even anti-alias them), but current versions of Windows and Mac OS do this by themselves. [=TrueType=] was made by Microsoft and Apple to compete with [=PostScript=] and a bitmap font is not needed. (Microsoft and Adobe eventually made the similar [=OpenType=] format as a replacement for [=TrueType=].) It also uses a different way of doing curves than [=PostScript=].

%%TODO: file formats

In order to correct visually uneven spacing between two particular characters in a font, there is a process called '''kerning'''. It adds or subtracts space between characters. It can be confused with '''letter-spacing or tracking''', which refers to the amount of space between letters in a piece of text. Tight spacing usually benefits large types, but it has a subjective feeling ("fast talking like in advertising") whereas wider spacing increases legibility of small fonts, and creates an association of a more “objective voice”. In excess, the text can look affected.

And just for the fun of it, [[http://i.imgur.com/ftQLI45.png here's a handy flowchart for designers]]. Conversely, if you want to know what that particular font is, try Identifont.com; its success record is often hit or miss, but it's probably the best resource out there nevertheless.

You can, if you wish, make your own fonts; it used to be a rather expensive hobby, but the availability of free tools like [[http://fontforge.github.io [=FontForge=] ]], [[http://www.adobe.com/devnet/opentype/afdko.html Adobe's Font Development Kit for [=OpenType=],]] and the Web-based [[http://fontstruct.com [=FontStruct=] ]] has made it much cheaper. (It is, however, a very tedious process, especially if you're including multiple character sets; don't say you weren't warned when you're having nightmares about botched kerning and splines stretching like taffy off the screen to strangle you.)

!!Tropes relating to type and typography:
* TheBackwardsR
* FontAnachronism
* ForeignLookingFont
* HeavyMetalUmlaut
* TypesetInTheFuture

!!Types of... type:


[[folder: Serif ]]

Serifs are [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serif embellishments]] added at the extremes of the strokes of some letters. They were characteristic of the earliest non-Gothic typefaces in European printing, and typefaces with serifs are still used. People writing for the page rather than the screen tend to choose serif typefaces, based on the belief that the serifs help the eye follow the text more easily.

* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bodoni Bodoni]]'''. A "Modern" or "Neoclassical" typeface (meaning that its stroke widths run pretty consistently horizontal and vertical; it's also called "Didone" in a portmanteau of Bodoni and the very similar Didot, described below), employed by Giambattista Bodoni in Parma, Italy, in the late 18th century. It's commonly seen on posters, headlines or logos, and seems to be particularly associated with ''[[GratuitousFrench haute couture]]''. The high contrast between thick and thin strokes can lead to a "dazzle" effect, however, where the horizontal strokes seem to disappear and the entire line appears to be a forest of verticals. For this reason, choosing the right style for the intended size is absolutely essential, and the version bundled with most [=PC=]s is not suitable for body text.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bookman_(typeface) Bookman]]''' is a loopy, friendly font with a rather baroque history, dating to the 1858 "Old Style Antique". The definitive modern version, however, was created at ITC in 1975, and is closely associated in US pop culture with the late 1970s and early 80s, especially the swash forms used in many TV show titles in that period. Like ITC Souvenir, using Bookman in a document means making a conscious effort to be retro. Unlike Souvenir, it's highly unlikely that people will want to claw their eyes out reading it, though they may sneak a confused look at the copyright date. The "Bookman Old Style" that ships with Microsoft Windows is closely related, but is a more austere slab serif font with distinctly less loopiness.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cambria_(typeface) Cambria]]''', designed by Dutch designer Jelle Bosma, is part of Microsoft's [=ClearType=] collection along with Calibri and a number of others; it somewhat resembles Bigelow and Holmes' Lucida Bright, but a little narrower and boxier. Cambria Math, its technical symbol extension, is the default, and only shipped, font for the current Equation Editor in Word. Other fonts, such as the Times-like '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XITS_font_project XITS Math]]''', are available for download and sort of compatible with Equation Editor.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caslon Caslon]]''' is a style of type first made by William Caslon I in London in the early 18th century and carried on by his descendants.[[note]]The "Caslon & Sons" type foundry existed until 1937, when it was purchased by Stephenson, Blake & Co., which eventually ended up under the Monotype umbrella; Caslon's descendant William Caslon [=IV=] was also influential in Victorian typographic trends.[[/note]] His style was heavily influenced by "Dutch-taste" or "Baroque" old-style types, then popular in the Netherlands, which had a taller lowercase and a darker, more condensed appearance on the page, influenced by blackletter. Caslon was eventually eclipsed in popularity by the types of John Baskerville and then by the so-called "Modern" types, but they are still heavily associated with colonial-era America, and modern revivals remain popular in printing. '''Adobe Caslon''' is among the most common (because it comes with Adobe software), but others exist; '''Big Caslon''', meant for headings and other large print, comes standard with [=macOS=], while '''Williams Caslon Text''' attempts to match the feel of 20th-century metal revivals. '''ITC Founders Caslon''', meanwhile, is meant to capture the look of the type printed letterpress, imperfections and all.
** Caslon's types (and their imitators) became so ubiquitous in the British Empire and its colonies in the New World that it was basically the default: "When in doubt, use Caslon" was common conventional wisdom, and the U.S. Declaration of Independence (the printed broadsides colonists actually saw, and not the handwritten version signed by the Founding Fathers) was set in it. Ironically, the intentionally-distressed "Caslon Antique" used to give posters, books, and other things a "colonial" feel isn't actually a Caslon, although the [[http://iginomarini.com/fell/ IM Fell types]] by Igino Marini are based on Dutch types[[note]]Imported to England in the 1600s by Dr. John Fell, hence the name[[/note]] that were directly ancestral to it and have the same distressed look to them.
* The '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Century_type_family Century]]''' family, especially '''Century Schoolbook''', are Modern-ish fonts dating from the 1890s, with heavier lines and reduced contrast as part of a backlash against "feeble" Didone models, while taking into account some of the first studies regarding legibility. True to its name, Century Schoolbook evokes older books for beginning readers -- especially the ''Dick and Jane'' series -- but today it's more commonly known by lawyers across the United States for being the font the [[UsefulNotes/AmericanCourts Supreme Court]] uses--and makes ''them'' use if they submit anything to SCOTUS.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheltenham_(typeface) Cheltenham]]''' was created in 1896 as a display face, although today its best known use may be as the text font for the immensely popular ''...For Dummies'' series of reference and tutorial books, as well as being the main for the New York Times' headlines, alongside Franklin Gothic.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clarendon_%28typeface%29 Clarendon]]'''. Common in {{wanted poster}}s (like the "REWARDS" text in [[http://daveng.files.wordpress.com/2008/06/wanted.jpg]]) of TheWildWest, logotypes and old traffic signs.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_Black Cooper Black]]'''. Created in 1921 by Oswald "Oz" Cooper for American Type Founders, but generally associated with TheSeventies due to its popularity in that era. You might also think of it as the ComicStrip/{{Garfield}} font, from its appearance on comic collections going back to the beginning of the strip. It was technically just the heaviest weight of a typeface that looked decidedly more conventional at the lighter end, but nobody remembers them.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_Modern Computer Modern Roman]]''', the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LaTeX LaTeX]] font. Is a didone type (horizontal lines are thinner than the vertical parts). (It's part of a whole family; see below.)
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Didot_(typeface) Didot]]''' is a style first used by the Didot family in Paris[[note]]the Didot brothers, Pierre the typefounder and Firmin the printer, along with their descendants[[/note]], and one of the chief members of the "Modern" (a.k.a. "Neoclassical" or "Didone") genre, along with Bodoni. Most of the tropes that apply to Bodoni also apply here, although the Didot types were generally quirkier, some styles even including a bizarre reverse-looped "g" that only the most faithful revivals bother with. Once again, the proper optical size for the purpose is absolutely essential, and the version bundled with most [=PC=]s is unsuited to body text.
* '''[[http://www.typespec.co.uk/doves-type/ The Doves Type]]''' is a fairly obscure type, but one marked by a [[DisproportionateRetribution hilariously petty]] feud between its owners, the principals of an early-20th-century London publishing house called Doves Press. The principals, Emery Walker and Thomas James Cobden-Sanderson, had commissioned a unique type for the press, but when the venture started losing money and Walker left, Cobden-Sanderson decided to deny Walker the ability to use it under an arrangement a mutual friend had brokered, and proceeded over a period of several months to dump all of the type into the Thames river. Modern typographer Robert Green reconstructed the type from Doves books, and in 2014 hired divers to fish a handful of the actual type out of the location in the Thames where Cobden-Sanderson had dumped it.[[note]]Most of the rest of the type is believed to be buried under the bridge Cobden-Sanderson dropped it from, which had been reconstructed following an IRA bombing in 2000.[[/note]]
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garamond Garamond]]''' and '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baskerville Baskerville]]''' (an updated '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caslon Caslon]]''', a British font used in the American colonies and in historical documents, like the U.S. Declaration of Independence. Still used and highly considered today). They offer formality and elegance.
** OlderThanTheyThink: (1480–1561), (1757) and (1722–1757), respectively.
*** Perhaps not surprisingly, Baskerville is used in some editions of the Literature/SherlockHolmes books.
** There are many Garamonds, of two distinct lineages. The first group is based on Claude Garamont's original work, while the second group comes by way of a later designer, Jean Jannon, who worked many years after Garamont's death but created fonts very much in the Garamond style, with a few tweaks (a little asymmetry here, a little intentional irregularity there...). One particularly famous variant, ITC Garamond [[note]]Possibly best known in its "Apple Garamond" narrow variant, used as Apple's corporate identity font from c1982 (when it dropped Motter Tektura) to the early 2000s, when it switched to Myriad.[[/note]] is recognizably of the Jannon lineage, but rendered in the ITC house style with high x-heights, it's almost a completely new font in its own right.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgia_(typeface) Georgia]]'''. Has larger characters than Times New Roman, with old-style (or "lowercase") figures. One of the first fonts explicitly designed for computers, emphasizing on-screen legibility. Like Verdana and Comic Sans, was released more or less as free software as part of Microsoft's Core Fonts for the Web initiative, but isn't quite as popular. It might be best known as one of the default fonts on Amazon's Kindle e-readers. '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller_(typeface) Miller]]''', by the same designer, is its sibling designed for print rather than the screen.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adobe_Jenson Jenson]]''': Based on the granddaddy of all roman types, cut by [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicolas_Jenson Nicolas Jenson]] around 1470. It's particularly notable for its lowercase "e" with a slanted crossbar, which was done away with by the later Aldine roman used by printer Aldus Manutius. Since italic types didn't exist during Jenson's time, it's usually paired with an italic based on the work of Ludovico degli Arrighi and his influential handwriting manual, published half a century later. Adobe Jenson, though common due to its inclusion in Adobe software, is only one of many Jenson revivals. As a rule, however, the many historical quirks mean there tends to be a very thin line between "masterful interpretation" and "kitschy novelty". '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centaur_(typeface) Centaur]]''', designed by Bruce Rogers in 1914, is considered among the very best. Another, '''Catull''', is the basis for the old Website/{{Google}} logo before it switched to a proprietary font.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lexicon_(typeface) Lexicon]]''': Dutch graphic designer Bram De Does created only two fonts in his lifetime, and they were both masterworks. Lexicon, commissioned for a Dutch dictionary in 1989, is the more famous one, and at nearly US$400 per style, one of the most expensive fonts in the world. If you're a graphic designer and you can get someone to buy it for you, ''do it''.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minion_(typeface) Minion]]''' The "boring" book font. Designed by Robert Slimbach for Adobe in 1990, it's meant to be a workhorse book typeface in an updated Garalde style. Think Garamond or Bembo, but without any attention-drawing eccentricities, allowing it to fade completely into the background. Since its debut, it has been used in countless books, owing both to the strength of its design and to being bundled with Adobe software. Though it may not always be the best choice depending on time period or subject matter, it does its job exceptionally well. Its use may, however, suggest a lack of effort on the part of the designer because of its status as a "default" font in professional typesetting.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palatino Palatino]]''': Classic one, easy to read. It's very likely the best known font created by the great German type designer Hermann Zapf, and in some form has been readily available on every major computing platform since at least the early 1990s. It's a SpiritualSuccessor to the Garamonds, Baskervilles, and Caslons of the past, rendered as though with a calligraphy pen, and is a bit of a chameleon in that it can do double duty as a text font and a display font.[[note]]Zapf meant it to be a display companion to '''Aldus''', which he designed specifically for long-form text, but the public felt otherwise.[[/note]] A Palatino Sans exists, created by Zapf and Akira Kobayashi, but it's fairly expensive and has yet to be bundled into any of Palatino's traditional homes; as yet, it's probably unlikely to displace Zapf's Optima (see below), which is something of a traditional partner for Palatino.
** '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palatino#Book_Antiqua Book Antiqua]]''': SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute. (URW Palladio, which is used on many Linux systems because its publisher made it available for free, isn't "suspiciously" similar, because it was authorized by Hermann Zapf; the same applies to Bitstream's Zapf Calligraphic. As with Arial, Monotype and Microsoft showed no such consideration with Book Antiqua, which annoyed Zapf greatly.) For reasons no doubt long forgotten in Redmond, Microsoft still ships it despite having licensed Palatino Linotype, which Zapf considered the definitive Palatino for all time.[[note]]Before he turned around and did Palatino Nova, anyway. He never could leave his work alone, making tweaks right up into the final years of his life.[[/note]]
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perpetua_(typeface) Perpetua]]''': A popular serif typeface by Eric Gill, the creator of Gill Sans (see below). A finely serifed type with an almost inscriptional quality (fitting, since Gill did stonecarving and sculpture in addition to his calligraphy and type design), it has become popular for fine printing and elegant headings. Though originally designed as a body text face for books, its delicate lines (accentuated in the digital version) make it somewhat less suitable for this purpose than Gill's own '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joanna_(typeface) Joanna]]''', which is similar but more sturdily constructed.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Souvenir_(typeface) Souvenir]]''': A blobby mess of a font created in 1914 by Morris Fuller Benton for American Type Founders, but popularized (in a rare Ed Benguiat misfire) by the ITC cut from the 1970s. (The sans serif version, Souvenir Gothic, was a creation of URW++ and isn't nearly as hideous; it also manages to look halfway decent as a monospace.) It was badly overused (redundancy?) in the 1970s and 1980s as a text font and is in many ways the Comic Sans of the phototypesetter era. If you're a fan of that flashy 70s ITC look, use Bookman, or Benguiat, or ITC Garamond. Anything but this. As the saying goes, friends don't let friends set Souvenir.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Times_New_Roman Times New Roman]]''': A traditionally-styled font originally commissioned for ''The Times'' of London and thus designed to fit the maximum amount of text into narrow newspaper columns without sacrificing either readability or aesthetics. Was for many years the default font in most word processors, mainly due to being one the only fonts available by default on Windows, but is still a major standard.[[note]]Anyone who’s had to write a university term paper in Microsoft Word will know the phrase “12-point Times New Roman, double-spaced” by heart. Craftier college students will have discovered that “Times”, the Linotype-licensed version included with [=macOS=], has looser spacing, allowing a marginally higher page count with the same number of words.[[/note]] Ubiquitous as a result, especially in non-professional work. Although not really anything special, [[BoringButPractical it does its job]] with a good balance of readability and economy of space. Used in several books and newspapers. Before the advent of digital typesetting almost all British paperbacks were set in either Times New Roman or the more old-fashioned looking '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plantin_%28typeface%29 Plantin]]'''. Using it on a Web site, however, tends to brand the creator as a noob. By the late 1970s, it had become a traditional partner with Helvetica and Courier in technical publishing, likely influencing Adobe's choice of the three as base fonts for the earliest versions of [=PostScript=].
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trajan_%28typeface%29 Trajan]]''': The [[FilmPosters film poster font]]. It’s based on the lettering found on the 2nd-century Trajan Column in Rome, which defined what we think of as “Roman letters” (or at least the capitals) today. Because of that stately heritage (giving it the same sort of gravitas as a deep-voiced narrator of a movie trailer), it became the font of choice to set the titles on posters for films of epic scale… but as time went on, usage creep saw it become more and more genre-neutral, until it began to be seen on posters for just about any movie. It probably doesn’t help that it’s one of the fonts that come bundled with Adobe software.
* '''[[http://www.fontyukle.net/en/Traktir.ttf Traktir]]''' is another slab serif typeface evoking the look and feel of 19th-century papers and posters. It's bilingual, with both Latin and Cyrillic letters (the latter was often used in UsefulNotes/TsaristRussia).
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windsor_(typeface) Windsor]]''' is Creator/WoodyAllen's signature title font. Older American [=GenXers=] will also recognize it as the title font for the 1976 Saturday morning cartoon {{Franchise/Tarzan}}: Lord of the Jungle. [[OlderThanTheyLook It dates all the way back to the late 19th century]], but is more commonly remembered for its use by the hippie counterculture of the 1960s and '70s, as in the ''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whole_Earth_Catalog Whole Earth Catalog]]''.[[note]]Source of the quote oft mentioned by Apple cofounder and typography enthusiast Creator/SteveJobs: "Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish."[[/note]]


[[folder: Sans Serif ]]

While serif fonts are more usual in print, sans serifs are widely used online[[note]]largely because at smaller point sizes, the low-resolution screens of yesteryear turned serif fonts, with their more elaborate structure and greater line contrast, into nigh-unrecognizable garbage[[/note]]. There is no agreement in which of the two has better readability (facility to read text) and legibility (to recognize characters) on the screen.

* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antique_Olive Antique Olive]]''' is a quirky sans-serif that was created by Roger Excoffon in France in the 1960s but has become inexplicably[[note]]Because although it's a standard [=PostScript=] 3 font, it doesn't seem to be a standard install for anything except [=GhostScript=] and maybe [=CorelDraw=].[[/note]] ubiquitous in the 2010s, being most closely associated with professional shingles and cheap plastic sale signs on the front lawns of stores. It's named for the foundry that commissioned it, and the O-shaped letters, not coincidentally, happen to be roughly olive-shaped.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calibri Calibri]]'''. In 2010, it became the default typeface in, among others, Microsoft Office, substituting for Times New Roman and Arial. Not recommended for use on Web sites, however, because at the same point size it is noticeably smaller than all of the sans-serif fonts that can be used as a fallback. If you see a printed note hanging up in your office (passive-aggressive or otherwise) and your office, like most, mainly uses Windows, the chances are overwhelming that it was typed in all-caps Calibri.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Century_Gothic Century Gothic]]'''. A modern remake of a 1930s font called Twentieth Century, pre-installed on Windows computers. Notably, it's a SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute for Avant Garde Gothic that's based on a SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute for Futura (both covered below).
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicago_%28typeface%29 Chicago]]'''. The default font for [[UsefulNotes/MacOS Macintosh]] computers for System 7 and earlier. Later [=Mac OSes=] replaced it with '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charcoal_%28typeface%29 Charcoal]]''', '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucida_Grande Lucida Grande]]''', '''Helvetica''', and most recently '''San Francisco''' (see below).
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eurostile Eurostile]]'''. Known for its squarish round[[note]]The technical term is "superelliptical"[[/note]] letters, most iconic in its extended (widened) form. Common on electronic equipment in the '70s and '80s. Still manages to retain a futuristic feel, though some would argue that it's slipping into {{Zeerust}} territory.
** For those who do think Eurostile Extended is showing its age, there's the even more geometric '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_Gothic Bank Gothic]]'''. [[{{Irony}} Originally designed in the 1930s]] as an industrial font, it has spent most of the last decade being slapped on anything and everything that needs to scream TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture.
** Eurostile and Bank Gothic are so commonly used to convey a futuristic setting that they now have their own trope: TypesetInTheFuture.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franklin_Gothic Franklin Gothic]]'''. Makes sense for headlines and minor design elements. Popular with the [[UsefulNotes/YanksWithTanks U.S. Army]] and various news outlets including the Washington Post and Time magazine.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frutiger_(typeface) Frutiger]]'''. Originally designed for use on airport signs, it is notable for being easy to read from a wide range of angles and distances. Quite popular, it has a clean modern look.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DIN_1451 DIN 1451]]''' fonts are very similar, invented in Germany in the 1930s as an industrial standard.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Futura_%28typeface%29 Futura]]'''. The earliest released geometric type, heavily associated with modernity in the 1930s through the 1950s, used extensively as a general-purpose font. Created by German typographer Paul Renner in the 1920s, but popular throughout the 20th century and still widely available in the 21st. Inspired a rash of imitators, while forcing more distinct competitors from other foundries to become more similar due to market demand. While it can also be used to evoke TheRoaringTwenties and TheGreatDepression (as well as the Art Deco style in general), the fact that it's never really gone away makes it less apt than its competitors, which are far less ubiquitous.
** Its Bauhaus style is good for a movie set in TheFifties or early-to-mid Sixties and you want to show signage at a research laboratory or tables in a science textbook (even though it is considered more a font from TheThirties, where it may also be found, but more in the context of something high end, like a fine arts publication).
** Futura Bold could almost be considered a separate typeface altogether, as the thicker lines and chopped-off tips on the A, M, V, and W lend them a distinctly informal feel compared to their thinner counterparts. Ubiquitous to the point of being the less-stodgy counterpart to Helvetica, and ''the'' font used for the RedAndWhiteComedyPoster.
** Futura Black and Futura Display ''are'' separate typefaces, despite sharing the Futura name. Futura Black is best known as "that stencil font", and was featured on ''Series/TheLoveBoat''. Futura Display was most popular in the 1950s and 1960s, and is probably best known in its use in the logo for retailer [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Tire Canadian Tire]].
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ITC_Avant_Garde Avant Garde]]''', initially designed for the magazine of the same name, could be considered a more recent equivalent. It was especially popular in the 1970s and still evokes a feel of that era. Known for its right-angled, tilted alternates for A, M, V, and W (and sometimes Y).
** '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erbar_(typeface) Erbar]]''': TheRival claimant to "earliest geometric sans serif", though never as popular. Probably best known for its '''Phosphor''' inline titling caps. A digital version exists, but is not particularly good; '''[[http://cjtype.com/dunbar/ Dunbar]]''', channeling both the original and its phototype knockoffs through a variable-height lowercase, is superior to the official releases.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gotham_%28typeface%29 Gotham]]'''. Commissioned by GQ magazine to be geometrical and look "masculine, new, and fresh", though it was purportedly modeled after machine-cut signage from the mid-20th century in [[BigApplesauce New York City]]. Now associated with UsefulNotes/BarackObama, whose campaigns made extensive use of it. Its use has ''exploded'' [[ColbertBump since then]]; most amusingly, it is used in the new logo for Creator/DCComics.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helvetica Helvetica]]'''. Released in 1957 to ride the coattails of its forebear '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akzidenz-Grotesk Akzidenz-Grotesk]]''', then in vogue among Swiss designers, it was marketed as the "perfect" typeface, meaning it could be used on almost any design or purpose. By the end of the 20th century, it and its clones have been [[GoneHorriblyRight overused by amateurs and professionals alike]]. This has possibly subverted its original intent of being the least obtrusive font imaginable.
** One of Helvetica's most famous uses was for the lettering of ship names on the Space Shuttle Orbiter Fleet.
** Helvetica is the font used for most things on TV Tropes (when text isn't set to the individual browser default). The monospaced font we have is Courier.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arial Arial]]'''. SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute.
*** [[http://www.ms-studio.com/articlesarialsid.html Here]] is a page about some of the differences between Arial and Helvetica. [[http://www.ironicsans.com/helvarialquiz/ This]] is a 20-question quiz for telling apart the two fonts, using well-known logos designed in Helvetica and converted to Arial.
*** As a rule of thumb, if you're viewing this page on a Windows computer, it will by default be in Arial. If you are viewing it on a Mac, it is probably Helvetica.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Univers Univers]]'''. TheRival: Both were created the same year (1957) and are extremely legible. Univers has wider letter-spacing. It is also ''the'' dominant choice of sans-serif font in British how-to books of the 1960s and 70s, disappearing rather abruptly in the 1980s as UK graphic designers discovered desktop publishing.
** '''[[https://acumin.typekit.com Acumin]]''': Adobe's SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute, released relatively recently (2015). It's a perfectly well-designed typeface, from the hand of Robert Slimbach (who, with Carol Twombly, has done most of the Adobe Originals series), but one wonders why they bothered to make something quite so similar. Its sheer range of styles rivals Univers, which does make it fairly versatile.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highway_Gothic Highway Gothic]]''', also known as the FHWA Series (from the United States Federal Highway Administration), was first developed in 1948 as a standard for US highway signs. The font series has been updated over time, notably to add lowercase letters to all sets. Highway Gothic has been used in a number of other countries in North and South America and Asia. Roadgeeks will easily spot fake signs in works that don't use Highway Gothic. A commercial version of the font, called '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interstate_(typeface) Interstate]]''', was developed for print and screen use in the 1990s, and has been used by the likes of ''Magazine/TVGuide'', Creator/TheWeatherChannel, and [[Creator/{{NBC}} NBC Sports]].
** '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clearview_(typeface) Clearview]]''' was designed with the intent on eventually replacing Highway Gothic, and began appearing on signs in some states with interim approval from the FHWA in the early 2000s. More extensive testing since its rollout, though, proved that Clearview did not significantly improve sign legibility compared to new signs using the old fonts, and actually had worse performance on negative-contrast signs (such as speed limit or yellow advisory signs). As a result, the FHWA rescinded its interim approval of Clearview in 2016. Due to replacement costs, though, Clearview signs are expected to remain in service for several more years yet, and it remains to be seen if the font will ever come into widespread use in other applications like its predecessor.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lithos Lithos]]''' is based on old Greek lettering and gives a primitive-ethnic feel. Good if you have a movie set in TheNineties and want to show a restaurant menu (particularly a Greek diner). Apple's '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skia_(typeface) Skia]]''' font[[note]]Originally designed to demonstrate [=QuickDraw GX=] functionality, allowing for near-limitless variability; it didn't take off when it was introduced, but later became a part of the [=OpenType=] Variable Font standard, making it one of the very first working variable fonts[[/note]] has a similar inspiration, but with lowercase letters and less obvious cheesiness.
* '''[[http://www.houseind.com/fonts/neutraface Neutraface]]''', a recent Art Deco (1920s-’30s)-style font based on the work of architect [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/wiki/Richard_Neutra Richard Neutra]], has begun to take off among designers who want a geometric sans that's a bit more distinct from Futura. Features a low centerline, which extends to the entire lowercase set as well as letters like "E" and "R". (A variant, '''Neutraface No. 2''', raises the centerline to make it more conventionally practical.)
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optima Optima]]''' is likely Hermann Zapf's second best-known font after Palatino; although a sans serif font, it borrows the varying stroke widths of typical serif fonts. Although it's most strongly associated with the 1960s, it's never really gone out of style, and generally makes a nice companion font for Palatino, especially since the much newer Palatino Sans is fairly expensive and rare. (You might also find it under the names "Zapf Humanist" from Bitstream or "URW Classico"; both are Zapf-approved copies.) Its most famous use is probably on the U.S. Vietnam Veterans Memorial, where it is used to [[TheDeadHaveNames list the names of the war dead]].
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roboto Roboto]]'''. The "Android font" as of Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich). Released for desktop systems by Google in 2012; it's gradually developed into Google's corporate text font (alongside '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Product_Sans Product Sans]]''', a Futura-esque design for its logos and other branding), and is the standard web font for Website/YouTube and Google+.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Francisco_(2014_typeface) San Francisco]]''' is the second Apple font by that name; the first was a [[CutAndPasteNote ransom note-style]] typeface designed in 1983 by Susan Kare for the original Macintosh and shipped until System 7 came out, while the new one was designed for the Apple Watch and replaces Helvetica Neue on OS X 10.11 and iOS 9. At a quick glance, it looks very much like Roboto, although on closer examination there are significant differences. A monospaced version, apparently developed for [=macOS=] 10.12 Sierra and iOS 10, shipped at Apple's June 2016 Worldwide Developer Conference, buried deep inside Xcode 8.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Segoe Segoe]]'''. As "Segoe UI", the Microsoft user interface font for Windows Vista and 7, along with Microsoft Office 2007 and 2010. A slightly-different version of Segoe is the font for Windows 8 and Windows Phone. Considered a SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute for Frutiger and Myriad.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trebuchet_MS Trebuchet]]'''. Designed in 1996, and named for the medieval siege engine. TV Tropes uses Trebuchet in a few places, including the "Resources" and "Tropes By" sidebars and the Tropes and Forums links along the top.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verdana Verdana]]'''. Sans serif counterpart to Georgia. Both were created by Matthew Carter for Microsoft. '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tahoma_(typeface) Tahoma]]''' is a narrower, more tightly-spaced variant also released by Microsoft. Although its creator was commissioned to expand the font's repertoire over the years, and [[https://store.typenetwork.com/foundry/cartercone/fonts/verdana-pro those versions]] are commercial, the first public version of Verdana was released more or less as open content in a (successful) attempt to expand the number of standard fonts available to web designers, so it's available in some form or another on nearly all platforms.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnston_(typeface) Johnston]]''': An early "humanist" sans-serif font, designed 1916 by Edward Johnston for the UsefulNotes/LondonUnderground, designed to be clean and modern but also friendly. Very useful for signage, rather like Frutiger.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gill_Sans Gill Sans]]''' A very similar humanist sans-serif font, designed in 1928–32 by Johnston's student, Eric Gill. Also used for signage, particularly for British railways (the London and North Eastern Railway and successor [[NationalRail British Rail]] in particular) from the 1920s to the 1960s, as well as many, many [=YouTube=] videos (it's a default title font on iMovie). It is used for signage and identification purposes by many British institutions, including the Church of England and Creator/TheBBC.
** Both Gill Sans and Johnston are seen as quintessentially British modern fonts; seeing them show up is a reasonably good indication that whatever is using it is connected to contemporary Britain.


[[folder: Script: Meant to imitate handwriting or calligraphy. ]]

* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comic_Sans Comic Sans MS]]'''. An informal script font for funny stuff, purportedly modeled after the hand lettering of comic book artist Dave Gibbons. It was never even meant to be used in print at all, but as the word-bubble text spoken by an early predecessor to Microsoft Office's talking paperclip.
** '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chalkboard_%28typeface%29 Chalkboard]]''': The [=MacOS=] equivalent. Mac users looking for an informal font will find Marker Felt also included for free.
** '''[[http://www.blambot.com/font_backissues.shtml Back Issues]]''', '''[[http://www.dafont.com/badaboom-bb.font Badaboom]]''', '''[[http://www.dafont.com/comic-book.font Comic Book]]''' and '''[[http://www.dafont.com/anime-ace-bb.font Anime Ace]]''', [[http://www.dafont.com/theme.php?cat=102 among]] [[http://www.1001fonts.com/comic-fonts.html others]] are often used instead of Comic Sans.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monotype_Corsiva Monotype Corsiva]]'''. A SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute to Hermann Zapf's [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ITC_Zapf_Chancery ITC Zapf Chancery]] created by Monotype to circumvent Adobe's [=PostScript=] licensing. ([=PostScript=] relied mostly on fonts from Linotype and International Typeface Corporation, leaving Monotype out of the loop.) Relatively well done compared to other [=PostScript=]-knockoff typefaces released in the same era. Used to add a casual feeling to invitations, personal cards and short sponsored texts.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kuenstler_Script Kuenstler Script]]''' and '''[[http://www.identifont.com/show?244U Snell Roundhand]]'''. Highly formal, based on elaborated calligraphy from the 17th and 18th centuries.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaufmann_%28typeface%29 Kaufmann]]''', '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dom_Casual Dom Casual]]''' (which has a freehand effect similar to Comic Sans), '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mistral_(typeface) Mistral]]''' and '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brush_Script Brush Script]]'''. Casual script typefaces (they emulate informal handwriting). Very popular in advertising and entertaining magazines.
** Dom Casual peaked in popularity in the mid-'50s to early '70s, when it was (over)used much as Comic Sans is now. Today it's most often used when a "retro" look is desired.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Segoe#Variations Segoe Print]]'''. Another font introduced in Windows Vista and Office 2007, presumably meant to displace Comic Sans as the informal/faux-handwriting font of choice.
* '''[[http://www.galapagosdesign.com/original/maiand.htm Maiandra GD]]''' is a font based on an early example of Oswald Cooper’s hand lettering in an advertisement for a book on home furnishing in the early 20th century, which was itself [[ArtImitatesArt based on examples of letterforms from Greek epigraphy]]. Similar to Comic Sans without falling into ItsPopularSoItSucks mentality; Maiandra can be used in many of the places where Comic Sans would actually be ''appropriate'' without inciting "RAWR COMIC SANS!" rage.


[[folder: Monospaced: Each character occupies the same amount of horizontal space. ]]

* '''[[http://www.ms-studio.com/FontSales/anonymous.html Anonymous TrueType and Anonymous Pro]]'''. Initially designed for Macs, these got exported to other operating systems. Popular with coders and some developers, they have a very clean look. Often overlooked because of compatibility issues.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Courier_(typeface) Courier]]'''. Looks like typewriting, because it was designed for the IBM Selectric typewriter line. The font of choice for screenwriters; nearly every guide to writing a screenplay says to use this font. 12-point Courier was also the font used by the US Department of State until 2004, when they switched to 14-point Times New Roman. Some courts also require it; the New Jersey judiciary's insistence that all documents coming into or out of its Appellate Division and Supreme Court be in Courier infuriates a lot of lawyers (and not a few judges!) in N.J., as Courier is profoundly hard to read for pages on end. Also great for plain text e-mails, code, and [[MemeticMutation rageface comics]]. [[http://quoteunquoteapps.com/courierprime/ Courier Prime]] is an attempt to create a prettier, more screenplay-friendly version of it.
** IBM actually created a number of fonts for the Selectric line, including Prestige Elite, Letter Gothic (a sans-serif), and Orator (similar to Letter Gothic, but with small caps instead of lower case letters). Those three and a few others have survived into the digital age, but are far less common than Courier and have been largely superseded by more screen-oriented fonts for general use. A few others like Script were fairly common in their day but have been superseded by more workable digital script fonts like Zapfino, Mistral, or Brush Script.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monaco_(typeface) Monaco]]''' (more specifically, the bitmap version of Monaco 9) was the standard monospaced system font for the Mac going back to the very beginning, and has appeared in at least three different official forms, including a glammed-up [=TrueType=] version designed by Bigelow and Holmes and a more direct recreation called MPW that Apple made for the Macintosh Programmer's Workshop IDE (one of the predecessors of Xcode). MPW seems no longer to be available except possibly from abandonware sites, but [[http://tobiasjung.name/profont/ ProFont]], a very close freeware equivalent, is.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OCR-A_font OCR-A]]'''. Bar code or credit card font. Was created in 1968 to be easily recognized by computers. It has a retro-futuristic look, so it's also used in advertising and display graphics.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OCR-B OCR-B]]''': Also for optical character recognition, but has a less technical appearance.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucida_%28font%29#Samples Lucida Console]]''' is the typeface used in the blue screen of death in Windows XP and Windows CE, as well as the default font for Notepad. It's also the only font that can replace the default one in the Command Prompt. In other platforms there is '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucida_%28font%29#Samples Lucida Typewriter]]'''.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consolas Consolas]]''', a favorite among programmers because of its clean look, especially when text anti-aliasing ([=ClearType=] in Microsoft land) is used. Strangely, it did not replace Lucida Console as the default font in Notepad.
** TV Tropes uses Consolas in the text box for editing a page, and when using the monospace markup as seen below. @@On TV Tropes, by default, this text is in Consolas.@@
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fixedsys Fixedsys]]''' is a very old console-based font. Unlike almost everything above, Fixedsys is ''not'' [=TrueType=]; the characters are encoded as pixels rather than lines and curves. Was the default font for Notepad on older versions of Windows, and still finds use where terminal programs are involved.


[[folder: Emphasis ]]

* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agency_FB Agency FB]]'''. A narrow, geometric font recognizable for its open capital "R". Popular in recent years for video game logos, including the ''VideoGame/{{Battlefield}}'' and ''VideoGame/RedFaction''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Faction:_Armageddon]] franchises.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_Gothic Bank Gothic]]'''. A small-caps font with a simple, geometric design. Popular as a logotype for anything that needs to convey "serious business", particularly for subheadings. As noted above, used as a substitute for Eurostile in works that are TypesetInTheFuture.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impact_(typeface) Impact]]''': Stevenson, Blake & Co.'s 1965 knockoff of Letraset's '''Compacta''' (1963), itself a knockoff/extension of Walter Hättenschweiler's '''Schmalfette Grotesk''' (1954), an all-caps bold condensed font from German foundry Photoscript. Ubiquitous due to its inclusion as part of Microsoft's "Core Fonts for the Web" initiative, and often used amateurishly due to being used by, well, amateurs. Still, it's good for making text stand out (just so long as it's used sparingly; otherwise you get an unreadable mess). White-with-black-border Impact is used in an awful lot of [[MemeticMutation image macros]].
** '''Helvetica Compressed''', despite carrying the Helvetica name, is another Impact/Compacta follower, designed by Matthew Carter for Linotype in 1966. Has three widths (Compressed, Extra Compressed and Ultra Compressed), which actually get less bold as they get narrower in order to preserve readability.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haettenschweiler Haettenschweiler]]''': Monotype's SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute, not released until 1993, and unusual in that Monotype actually owns the rights to Impact and licensed it to Microsoft. It is visually quite similar apart from the distinctive lowercase "r" (which it borrows from Helvetica Compressed), but it at least acknowledges its relationship to Schmalfette Grotesk, being named after the original designer. It's used in the Joytube.com "Concentrate Plus" game.
** '''[[http://www.linotype.com/727/itc-machine-family.html ITC Machine]]''' can also substitute for Impact, although its chamfered edges (like the letters on a varsity jacket) tend to give more of a "sports" vibe.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clarendon_%28typeface%29#French_Clarendon French Clarendon]]'''. Apart from Clarendon, this reverse-contrast[[note]]i.e, with the horizontal strokes thicker than the vertical ones[[/note]] variation was used in wanted posters to highlight a word or phrase. Just like its sister font, it's an archetypal "Wild West" font.
** '''Playbill''' is based on French Clarendon.
* Paratype's '''[[http://www.myfonts.com/fonts/paratype/rodchenko-cond/ Rodchenko]]''' is the archetypal, hammy, totalitarian SФVIЭT PЯФPAGДИDA PФSTЭЯ font. It is not to be confused with a [[http://www.fontpalace.com/font-details/Rodchenko+Regular/ much older font by the same name]] that is particularly associated with graphic design in the 1970s; astute viewers of Boston-based movies might note it as the font used on Boston Police cars until the early 2000s. This Rodchenko is also known as [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Futura_Black Futura Black]] and was designed by Paul Renner as a companion to the regular sans-serif Futura; in turn, it's not to be confused with [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Braggadocio_%28typeface%29 Braggadocio]], which was based on Futura Black but is a little wider, a little blobbier, and a little newer (1930s vs 1920s).
** Another "Communist-style" font is [[http://asyenka.deviantart.com/art/TRUTH-PRAVDA-145657557 "Truth"]], named after the Soviet Communist Party newspaper "Pravda" ("Truth"). Other Pravda-derived fonts, however, are much more subdued and ordinary-looking.
* '''[[http://www.linotype.com/1465/serpentine-family.html Serpentine]]'''. Used a lot in the 1990s and early 21st century by brands that wanted to look hip and edgy, most notably the ''Film/JamesBond'' franchise.


[[folder: Creative ]]

* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papyrus_(typeface) Papyrus]]'''. [[ForeignLookingFont Ancient-looking font]]. While not a particularly ugly font like Comic Sans, it's generally associated with New Agers and people with absolutely no sense of design. James Cameron used it for the Na'vi subtitles in ''Film/{{Avatar}}'' and got razzed for it. A lot. [[https://xkcd.com/590/ This]] Webcomic/{{xkcd}} strip recommends its use for trolling font geeks.
* '''[[http://fontzone.net/font-details/rickshaw Rickshaw,]]''' '''[[http://www.myfonts.com/fonts/solotype/buddha/ Buddha,]]''' '''[[http://www.fontspring.com/fonts/jeff-levine/china-doll-jnl China Doll,]]''' and numerous other [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wonton_font "wonton fonts"]]: Used to convey an Asian, Chinese, and/or Japanese atmosphere, despite not remotely resembling any writing system actually used in Asia. Even so, they still get regular use, particularly from lazy designers or small businesses out to emphasize their Asian-ness. If you do feel compelled to use one of these (or are forced to by a client), handle with care, otherwise your work could easily come off as [[UnfortunateImplications racist]].
* '''[[http://www.linotype.com/134/bernhard-family.html Bernhard Antique]]''' was created by ATF typographer Lucian Bernhard in 1912, and tended to be used rather heavily in the 70s and 80s to give kind of a cozy, "homespun" look to books in the phototypesetter era. It's still used here and there (a slightly modified version called Bernard MT Condensed (without the rough edges of the original) is a default install on Windows 10), although it doesn't really work unless you're trying to be self-consciously retro.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broadway_%28typeface%29 Broadway]]''', created in 1927. Popular with works set in the 1930s.
** Piccadilly, an all-caps variant created in 1973. Looks like Broadway characters made from neon tubing.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curlz Curlz]]''' and '''[[http://www.identifont.com/show?3FR ITC Viner Hand]]''' seem to have become the stereotypical typefaces for the goth subculture.
* '''[[http://www.impallari.com/lobster Lobster]]''' by Pablo Impallari is a script font that seems to have become common for restaurant and bar signs as well as many, many product labels. It was designed to take full advantage of Microsoft and Adobe's [=OpenType=] technology, including numerous ligatures to make it work more like cursive writing, and seems to be mainly used to give a sign or document a neo-{{Retraux}} feel. Because it was released as a [[https://fonts.google.com/specimen/Lobster Google Web Font]] and is free for anyone to use, it's become very popular. [[http://www.lobsteristhenewcomicsans.com Perhaps too popular.]]
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Typography_of_Apple_Inc.#Motter_Tektura Motter Tektura]]''', created by Austrian designer Othmar Motter in 1975, is an interesting case. Although it's very familiar (particularly to [=GenXers=] from the US) from several brands, most notably Apple, Reebok, and Mead Trapper Keepers, it appears that Motter never authorized a digital version. If you find one, therefore, it's probably a recreation.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neuland Neuland]]''' (especially Neuland Inline) is best known as the Franchise/JurassicPark font, and is occasionally used to evoke images of the jungle and savannahs of Africa. It isn't necessarily a bad font, but be careful how you use it; at best, it comes off as clichéd, and at worst, [[UnfortunateImplications racist]], like the "wonton fonts" mentioned above. This fact was hinted at as early as 1928 with the naming of '''Othello''', Monotype's SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute. [[http://www.fonts.com/font/international-typefounders-inc/phosphate Phosphate Inline]][[note]]a copy of '''Phosphor''', related to '''Erbar-Grotesk''', mentioned above[[/note]] is a popular and slightly less hackneyed substitute.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Westminster_(typeface) Westminster]]''' was created in the 1960s by British font designer Leo Maggs and based on the style of the MICR[[note]]Magnetic Ink Character Recognition, a predecessor to OCR and still fairly widely used[[/note]] characters used on checks. Until digital page layout became the norm in the late 1980s, it was known to most people as the "computer" font, although if used today it's more likely to invoke a feeling of [[{{Zeerust}} mimeographed zines and musty library books]] that should have been weeded out years ago.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wingdings Wingdings]]''' and '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Webdings Webdings]]'''. A series of Microsoft dingbat (symbols instead of letters and numbers) fonts. Not to be confused with the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miscellaneous_Symbols Unicode symbols]], these fonts use symbols mapped to actual keyboard letters (such as [[http://blogs.msdn.com/b/oldnewthing/archive/2006/05/23/604741.aspx J for a smiley face]]).


[[folder: Font families ]]

It's been a trend since the 1980s or so for fonts to be designed as coherent families, usually with serif, sans-serif, and monospaced variants, and sometimes with display versions as well. Font families have existed for a long time, since printers first combined italic and upright glyphs in the same documents and wanted them to look right together, but Donald Knuth's Computer Modern family was the first modern one and still the most overwhelmingly comprehensive (due to it being implemented in a fashion best described as "excessively flexible").

* '''[[https://github.com/adobe-fonts Adobe Source]]''', while not Adobe's first open source font project (that would be Utopia), is certainly their most ambitious. Intended, at least to some extent, to show off the capabilities of [=OpenType=] technology, the joint successor to both [=TrueType=] and Adobe Postscript Type 1 formats, the family includes three sets of Latin-script core fonts (Source Code Pro (monospace), Source Sans Pro, and Source Serif Pro) as well as a large number of non-Latin scripts including Hebrew, Devanagari, and CJK.
* '''Computer Modern''' (mentioned above) and its nearly-identical update [[http://www.gust.org.pl/projects/e-foundry/latin-modern Latin Modern]] were created for METAFONT, an early digital font rendering program that Donald Knuth (better known for his ''The Art Of Computer Programming" series of books) created to complement the [=TeX=] formatting package; however, they've been long since converted to [=PostScript=], [=TrueType=], and OTF formats for wide use, and expanded to include numerous character sets. They're loosely based on older versions of Century (as was commonly used in textbooks up through the mid-20th century), but also come in many, many forms of serif, sans-serif, and what can only be described as a blocky, charmingly antiquated monospaced form. (The original METAFONT source contained something like 60 different user variables, and Knuth noted that one of the reasons METAFONT didn't succeed outside the [=TeX=] world was because type designers didn't appreciate being forced to be mathematicians just to make a font.) Computer Modern and [=TeX=] were created because of Knuth's dissatisfaction with existing typesetting facilities for mathematical and technical writing, a field it still excels at.
* '''[[https://www.behance.net/gallery/28579883/Cormorant-an-open-source-display-font-family Cormorant]]''' by Christian Thalmann is a fairly large family of variants on a basic Garamond design, redrawn specifically for use on ultra-high-res ("retina") screens. It came out in 2015, making it by far one of the newest fonts listed on this page, not to mention one of the more interesting ones stylistically.[[note]]It particularly shines in languages like French that use a lot of diacritics; Thalmann made Cormorant's extra pointy.[[/note]]
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DejaVu_fonts DejaVu]]''' (and its ancestor, the [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitstream_Vera Bitstream Vera]] family) is one of the most popular open source font families; it's used on many free operating systems and is constantly updated to keep up with changes in the Unicode standard (which mostly involves adding emoji these days). Apple's console font Menlo is a slight modification of [=DejaVu=] Mono to increase readability on a computer screen.
* '''[[https://www.dardenstudio.com Freight]]''' is a fairly large family by Joshua Darden, used, among other places, by Facebook in some of their branding, and as the main text font for most Gawker sites.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberation_fonts Liberation]]''' and [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Croscore_fonts Croscore]] are two very similar families derived from Ascender by Steve Matteson. Both are open source; the Croscore variants are used by Google Chrome as exact metrical replacements for Times, Helvetica, and Courier but are essentially completely different designs. There are also two Crosextra fonts, Carlito and Caladea, which Chrome OS uses to replace Microsoft's Calibri and Cambria fonts. Not to be confused with
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_Libertine Linux Libertine and Biolinum]]''', which are a pair of fonts designed from the ground up as an open source font family. Libertine is meant as a replacement for Times, while Biolinum is essentially a somewhat more casual Optima. Libertine is the font used in TOW's logo, replacing Hoefler Text.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucida Lucida]]''' by Charles Bigelow and Kris Holmes is very widely known due to one of its sans serif variants, Lucida Grande (also mentioned above), having been used for years as a system font by versions of Windows and Mac OS X. Lucida Console is also a common monospace font for coders, while Lucida Bright (an improved form of the original serif Lucida) was created for Scientific American magazine and has shown up sporadically on both Mac and Windows since the 1990s, as well as a good number of versions of Java. Closely related are the Luxi family (designed for the X11 Unix windowing system) and the TrueType version of the Mac OS New York font, both of which were also designed by B&H.
* The '''Microsoft Cleartype''' family (aka the "C series" or "the new Office fonts") is a set of fonts designed to show off Microsoft's [=ClearType=] rendering engine; the above-mentioned Calibri is probably the most common one, along with Cambria, Candara, Consolas, Constantia, Corbel, and Cariadings. They're standard with Windows since Vista, and with all versions of Microsoft Office; all except for Cariadings can also be had for free with some of Microsoft's Office-related utility software.
* '''URW Nimbus''' isn't so much a font family in its own right as a series of clones of Times, Helvetica, and Courier; unlike the Croscore fonts, however, the Nimbus fonts are virtually identical to their ancestors. They were released by URW for the [=GhostScript=] printing software package and are common on Linux systems and Windows systems where the owner can't afford to license real Helvetica. (In fact, the [=GhostPDL=] package that [=GhostScript=] is part of includes a treasure trove of high-quality Latin alphabet fonts, almost all of which are similar or identical to popular fonts like Arial, Bookman, or Univers, but not all of them are fully open source-licensed, so look it over twice before you distribute any changes you make to them.)
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PT_Fonts The PT font family]]''' by Russian foundry [=ParaType=] (main designer Aleksandra Korolkova) was commissioned by the Russian government to provide a unified font family covering all the languages of the Russian Federation, in both Cyrillic and Latin letters; it's available on many Linux distros as well as OS X. It comes in mono, serif, and sans-serif, and in multiple weights for various layout purposes. [[note]]Perhaps oddly (coming from a country where the Orthodox Church plays such a large role in daily life), the PT family lacks characters necessary for typing Church Slavonic, despite fully supporting Ukrainian, Belarusian, and Serbian which are not official languages of Russia at all, and even some of the obsolete letters that were deleted from the Russian alphabet after the October Revolution.[[/note]]
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rotis Rotis]]''', by Otl Aicher, is probably best known in its semi-serif form, for which it's a somewhat popular logo font, but it comes in several other variants that vary by stroke weight and serif design.
* '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thesis_(typeface) The Thesis family]]''' by Luc(as) De Groot (better known under its individual font names, [=TheSans=] and [=TheSerif=]) were designed as and commonly used as corporate identity fonts.

Finally, a few well-known…


[[folder: Font Designers ]]

* Ludovico Arrighi (Italy, 1475–1527) was, if not exactly the creator of italic type, one of its pioneers. A great many italic styles even today are based to some extent on his work, and he also remains influential in hand-lettered calligraphy.
* Ed Benguiat (United States, born 1927) worked for the International Typeface Corporation as both type designer and graphic designer. In addition to ITC Benguiat, he also created ITC Souvenir (based on a WWI-era original), ITC Bookman, and a number of logotypes including those of Playboy, Sports Illustrated, Estée Lauder, and a good number of 1970s movie posters. If you see a font that makes you think U.S. 1970s schlock, there's a good chance Benguiat had a hand in it, unless it was Herb Lubalin's work. House Industries sells five of his font designs as the "Ed Benguiat Collection".
* Morris Fuller Benton (United States, 1872–1948) was the head designer of American Type Founders and created, revived, or otherwise popularized over 200 typefaces, of which Century, Franklin Gothic, Hobo, and Cheltenham are probably the best known.
* Giambattista Bodoni (Italy, 1740–1813), who along with colleague/rival Firmin Didot created what are now known as the "modern" or "didone" style fonts.
* Matthew Carter (United Kingdom/United States, born 1937): Creator of the ubiquitous Verdana screen font for Microsoft, along with other well-known fonts like Georgia, Bitstream Charter, Bell Centennial (the phone book font), Skia, and the Greek version of Helvetica. Probably wishes he created Myriad, since his fonts are otherwise ubiquitous in modern culture.
* Vincent Connare (United States, born 1960): Created Comic Sans for Microsoft and is possibly [[OverlyNarrowSuperlative the most hated type designer alive]]. Also created Trebuchet, which isn't so bad but has been overshadowed by the rather slicker Verdana.
* The Didot family of France, printing pioneers active from the 17th through 19th century. Their eponymous font is named for Firmin Didot (1764–1836), who was also known for creating the stereotype, which originally referred to what we'd now call a printing plate.
* William Addison Dwiggins (United States, 1880–1956): A man of many talents, who coined the term "graphic designer" to describe his profession[[note]]encompassing illustration, lettering, writing, book design, marionette theater, and only much later in life, type design[[/note]], which wouldn't be recognized as a distinct field for several decades afterwards. His released types are rather modest in number, but two of them (Electra and Caledonia) are considered modern classics, and another (Metro) was a newspaper mainstay for decades in the mid-20th century. His creative output was far greater than Linotype ever cared to bring to commercial sale, but he has provided plenty of fodder for other designers; the Font Bureau and its alumni are particular devotees.
* Adrian Frutiger (Switzerland, born 1928): Creator of Univers, Avenir, and the eponymous Frutiger, the last of which was ancestral to (among others) Microsoft Segoe and Adobe Myriad, the latter of which very likely might be the defining font of the early 21st century. His OCR-B font is a common stylistic choice for movies with techie or spy themes.
* Claude Garamont, who came to fame in 1541 for "les Grecs du Roi", an influential Greek typeface commissioned by King François I of France to print bibles; the Garamond family of fonts is based on his work and named for him, although some Garamonds are based on the later derivatives created by Jean Jannon decades after Garamond's death.
* Eric Gill (United Kingdom, 1882–1940): Best known for Gill Sans, and also being a creepy incestuous jerk.
* [[http://www.impallari.com Pablo Impallari]] (Argentina): Creator of numerous free/libre fonts for the Web, most notably Lobster, Raleway, and free versions of Franklin Gothic, Caslon, Baskerville, and Bodoni.
* Susan Kare (United States, born 1954): One of the pioneers of pixel art design and the creator of most of the bitmap fonts for the early Macintosh. Chicago is arguably her most famous.
* Herb Lubalin (United States, 1918–1981): Creator of the divisive ITC Avant Garde font, and, like Ed Benguiat, a major influence on the type design of the 1970s.
* Aldo Manuzio (Italy, 1449–1515) was the actual inventor of italics, as well as the person responsible for the modern use of the semicolon. The company Aldus, which created the first mass-market desktop publishing program [=PageMaker=], was named for him.
* Steve Matteson (United States, born 1965) has been closely associated with computer typography for quite some time, having been the creator of Google's Croscore and Droid families, Microsoft's Segoe UI and Andale Mono families, and the infamous Curlz MT display face.
* Max Miedinger (Switzerland, 1910–1980) created an intentionally dull, unassuming font called Neue Haas Grotesk that, with a few tweaks and some genius marketing, went on to become the ubiquitious Helvetica.
* Paul Renner (Germany, 1878–1956): Best known as creator of the Futura font, a bit of a spiritual ancestor to Helvetica et al.
* Robert Slimbach (United States, born 1956): Creator of Minion and Utopia (one of Adobe's first free software fonts), and along with Carol Twombly, Myriad.
* Carol Twombly (United States, born 1959): During a relatively short career at Adobe, Twombly created Lithos and Trajan, as well as collaborating with Slimbach on Myriad.
* Hermann Zapf (Germany): Creator of Melior, Optima, Zapf Chancery, Zapfino, and perhaps most famously Palatino, and an early pioneer along with Donald Knuth in digital type design. Died in June 2015 at the age of 96.

And a few companies, known as "foundries" after their original work of creating typefaces out of molten metal (there's a lot more where these came from):
* Adobe
* American Type Founders: A conglomerate of some 20-odd American type foundries, including the Central Type Foundry of Philadelphia (among the oldest, if not ''the'' oldest, in the country). Under the direction of Morris Fuller Benton, it generated some of the most iconic typefaces of the 20th century, but failed to survive the technological transitions of the [[TheSeventies '70s]] and [[TheEighties '80s]], going bankrupt and having its assets sold for scrap in an infamous 1993 auction.
* Apple: Along with Adobe, almost singlehandedly responsible for the boom in desktop publishing from the 1980s onward. The company's focus on typography owes entirely to college dropout Creator/SteveJobs dropping in on a calligraphy class at his erstwhile alma mater. Employed designer Susan Kare (see below) to create most of the bitmap typefaces for the original [[UsefulNotes/AppleMacintosh Macintosh]], before eventually licensing some of the most iconic fonts in the biz. Most recently known for '''San Francisco''' ("SF" for short), a Helvetica-esque neo-grotesque used for its corporate identity and throughout its operating systems ([=iOS=], [=watchOS=], [=tvOS=] and [=macOS=]).
* Bitstream (now part of Monotype) was one of the first foundries to specialize in digital fonts. They had a huge library of both original fonts (Charter and Vera were among the first popular free software fonts) and authorized knockoffs.
* The [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Font_Bureau Font Bureau]] is a UsefulNotes/{{Boston}}-based company founded in 1989 by publication designer Roger Black and type designer David Berlow. They specialize in creating high-quality types for professional clients, including some of the most influential publications in the U.S. and around the world. They do occasionally indulge in whimsical creations or passion projects, but most of their catalogue consists of commissions. They've also developed a knack for shepherding young type designers who've gone on to do great things, such as Tobias Frere-Jones and Cyrus Highsmith. They're also known for their rights structure, where its individual designers retain rights to the typefaces they've designed. (Most former employees return the favor by staying within the fold on [=FB=]'s [[http://www.typenetwork.com TypeNetwork]] digital storefront / distribution hub.)
* [[http://greekfontsociety.gr The Greek Font Society]] produces a decently large catalog of Greek and Greek/Latin fonts. Their GFS Artemisia font is essentially Times as rendered in the style used by most Greek fonts.
* [[http://gust.org.pl GUST]] is primarily a Polish [=TeX=] user group, but they're also known for their type work, including the Latin Modern and [=TeX=] Gyre series (based on and enhanced from, respectively, the Computer Modern and URW [=GhostScript=] fonts), as well as some of their own creations like Antykwa Poltawskiego and Iwona.
* International Typeface Corporation: Started in 1970 to capitalize on the invention of phototypesetting and now a brand belonging to Monotype. Their signature style was flashy, chunky letterforms that didn't work so well in books and magazines but looked great on ad copy and signs.
* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Letraset Letraset]]: A company that produced [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dry_transfer dry-transfer]] lettering, a popular intermediate step between hand-lettering and professional typesetting in the days before desktop publishing. Its ubiquity from the 1960s to the 1980s means you may well have seen it without knowing what it was. Many of its own designs were of the "cheesy novelty font" variety, although it did produce the influential Compacta, and it also licensed popular typefaces like Helvetica from other companies. A number of Letraset faces are available digitally as [=ITC=] fonts.
* Linotype: Best known for their famously complex and popular typesetting machines that would cast molten metal into a "[[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin line o' type]]", the (relative) speed of which made it immensely popular for the high-pressure, time-sensitive world of newspapers and magazines. Linotype survived the disintegration of typesetting as a specialized trade to make big investments in digital typography, and they're still one of the biggest names in the business.
* Monotype: Formerly Linotype's biggest competitor in hot metal type, now its owner. The key difference was that the Monotype system produced individual sorts that were still hand-composed, allowing for finer-grained control over the typography, which made it more popular for books and other high-quality printing. Somewhat notorious for design theft; their Book Antiqua clone of Palatino outraged Hermann Zapf, probably even more so given that Zapf had authorized copies under different names to two other foundries.
* URW++: One of the early specialists in digitizing older type. A set of their fonts, donated originally to the [=GhostScript=] project, have been adopted among Linux users (as well as broke Mac and Windows users) as free alternatives to some of the most important fonts out there. Their Ikarus font editor[[note]]So named because early versions crashed a lot[[/note]], first created in the mid-1970s, was one of the first and, through the 1990s, most important digital font editors available.


[[folder: Advertising and Corporate Identity ]]

Many brands develop close associations with fonts.
* Times New Roman is so named entirely because it was commissioned by ''[[UsefulNotes/BritishNewspapers The Times]]'' of London in 1931. It still uses a variant today; probably the only thing that could possibly incense the normally level-headed ''Times'' readers would be if they abandoned the Times font family for something noticeably different.
* BMW today is inextricably linked to Helvetica, and has been for quite some time now.
* Volkswagen has used Futura for decades. They manage to make it look clean ''and'' friendly.
* IKEA also had a historic association with Futura; this was nixed and switched to Verdana, which caused a small outcry among fans of IKEA and Futura.
* Creator/TheBBC uses Gill Sans for its logo and corporate identity. As of 2017, it is phasing Gill Sans out in favour of a custom in-house font (though the logo is to retain the old typeface).
* The UsefulNotes/LondonUnderground has used Johnston (from which Gill Sans is derived) for a very long time; the rest of Transport for London followed suit when it was formed in 2000.
* In contrast, most [[UsefulNotes/SubwaysOfTheUnitedStates American subway systems]] use Helvetica. Most notable are probably the [[UsefulNotes/NewYorkSubway New York City Subway]] and UsefulNotes/WashingtonMetro, which both use white-on-black signage throughout their systems.


[[folder: Film ]]

* ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helvetica_(film) Helvetica]]''--a documentary about typography.
* ''Film/AmericanPsycho'': Despite what Patrick Bateman may tell you, there is not a font called "Silian Rail"--his card appears to be Garamond. Van Patten's "Romalian type" appears to be [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Didot_%28typeface%29 Didot]]. Bryce's card is Helvetica, Paul Allen's is Copperplate Gothic.


[[folder: Literature ]]

* ''Literature/ThursdayNext'': In the Bookworld, different fonts are regarded as different languages.
* ''Literature/TheFamiliar'': Fonts are used pointedly (of course, since the author Creator/MarkZDanielewski is known for his [[UnconventionalFormatting use of typography]]). The books have nine narrators, each of which has their own distinctive font, plus some other fonts used for other instances - leading to a listing of no less than 23 fonts in the end-credits of the books.


[[folder: Video Games ]]

* ''VideoGame/TypeRider'' is a mobile game devoted entirely to the history of typography and fonts, even going as far back as the age of cave paintings.
* ''VideoGame/{{Undertale}}'', similar to ''Helvetica'' mentioned below, has two skeleton characters named Papyrus and (Comic) Sans. Almost everything written or said by them is done so in their respective fonts, unlike many other characters who instead share the same font. There is also the enigmatic [[DummiedOut W. D. Gaster]], whose speech/writing is also done in a unique font - in this case, Wingdings (which seems to be where his initials are derived from - incidentally, "Aster" is also a font).


[[folder: Webcomics ]]

* ''Webcomic/{{Achewood}}''. [[http://achewood.com/index.php?date=07052007 Téodor finds the guy who invented Comic Sans]], and the rest of the cast drop what they're doing so they can beat the tar out of him.
* ''Webcomic/{{Helvetica}}'' is a comic about reanimated skeletons facing existential crises. The protagonist is also named after the typeface.
* ''Webcomic/SweetBroAndHellaJeff'' is the [[StylisticSuck deliberately terrible creation]] of ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'''s Dave Strider. So all text in the comic is Comic Sans.
* ''Webcomic/{{Xkcd}}'' [[http://xkcd.com/590/ shows us]] how to [[ExploitedTrope exploit]] a font. [[http://xkcd.com/1015/ This strip]] deals with the frustration in recognizing bad kerning. [[RuleOfThree And]] [[https://xkcd.com/736/ this one]] deals with someone who is upset at [[NoodleIncident someone giving him the wrong type of font]] [[NotWhatItLooksLike in exactly the wrong place.]]
* ''Webcomic/{{Wondermark}}'' [[http://wondermark.com/650/ features]] a character obsessed with this trope.
* ''Webcomic/NotInventedHere'' demonstrates the annoying results of teaching someone to recognize poor kerning [[http://notinventedhe.re/on/2011-6-23 here]], much like the second Webcomic/{{xkcd}} strip above.
-->'''Paul''': See this logo? There's too much space between these two letters. It's called "bad kerning".\\
'''Desmond''': Oh yeah, now that you mention it, I do.\\
'''Desmond''' (looking around): Wait, it's here too... and here... and here...\\
'''Desmond''': ''It's everywhere!''\\
'''Paul''': ''Now I'' can go.
* ''Webcomic/CyanideAndHappiness'' introduces [[http://explosm.net/comics/2301/ "The Comic Sans Game".]]


[[folder: Web Original ]]

* ''Website/CollegeHumor'' has created two shorts based on fonts, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i3k5oY9AHHM Font Conference]] and [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6djQHeqMwQ Font Fight]]. Different fonts are personified by different actors, assuming personas suggested by the font names. Thus Comic Sans is a superhero, Wing Dings is a mental patient able to speak only using the names of symbols ("diamonds candle candle flag!"), Futura is a time traveler from the future, Century Gothic is a goth, etc.
* [[http://www.mcsweeneys.net/articles/im-comic-sans-asshole This]] [=McSweeney's=] piece.


[[folder: Real Life ]]

* If you're using UsefulNotes/MozillaFirefox, a handy add-on to tell what fonts are used on a Web page is [[https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/fontinfo/?src=api fontinfo]]; highlight and right-click on text to use it.
* An interesting kerning exercise can be found [[http://type.method.ac/# here]].


[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* The sing-alongs on ''WesternAnimation/TheBeatles'' used Folio Bold to display the lyrics on all used songs except "I'll Follow the Sun".
!!It also provides examples of:
* DiscreditedTrope: For professional print design, most of the '''[[http://www.ampsoft.net/webdesign-l/WindowsMacFonts.html default Windows fonts and their Mac equivalents]]''' fall into this. However, they are very common in Web design because of their high compatibility rate with most browsers.
** To overuse and misuse script fonts, especially Brush Script.
** Though the newer CSS 3 tricks, like @font-face and embedding sites like Google Fonts, allow the use of any font to be used on the web.
* FontAnachronism: For when fonts are used in the wrong time period either by mistake, by oversight, or on purpose to evoke a certain era while engaging the general audience.
* ItsPopularNowItSucks: Liable to come up with regard to any typeface that sticks around and sees common use. Helvetica is a particular BaseBreaker; while many designers still love it, it also has a surprisingly large {{Hatedom}}, not due to its aesthetics (which are pretty much universally admired) but simply because it's been used ''everywhere'' for so long.