You’re looking at one right now.

What a font is, precisely, has varied in meaning over time. In letterpress printing using metal type, a “font” was a complete set of characters in a specific size and style of typeface (a set of characters that share a common design structure). So for a typesetter working with metal type, 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 term “font” has largely taken over, particularly since outline fonts can[[note]]that’s not to say “should”[[/note]] be scaled to any 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 [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin 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 [=macOS=] and Windows, would let you see the fonts and even anti-alias them, but current versions of Windows and [=macOS=] 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

!! Points and Picas and Ems, oh my!

The basic unit of type is the '''point''', which defines the height of a given glyph's '''bounding box''' (not the letter itself -- a holdover from the days of metal type). The size of a point once varied by country, but the Linotype and Monotype machines helped spread the use of Anglo-American printers' points, which were a hair smaller than 1/72 inch, and modern desktop publishing software now defines a point as exactly 1/72 inch, simplifying the math considerably[[note]]unless you’re accustomed to the metric system, in which case, maybe not[[/note]]. Depending on the relative height of the lowercase and capitals, the length of the extenders, and the amount of whitespace at the top and bottom of the bounding box, different fonts can appear different sizes at the same point size, so it's not a reliable indicator for apparent size; you'll have to trust your eyes for that.

A related term to the point is the '''pica''', which is defined as 12 points, or ⅙ inch. While not relevant to consumer-grade apps like Microsoft Word, it's used in the publishing industry to define the physical size of the paper, the text block, etc., and so is a standard unit of measurement in professional typesetting software like Adobe [=InDesign=]. Dimensions will usually be spelled out in a combination of picas and points, written in the format "[=XpY=]" -- e.g., a text column with a width of 16p6 is 16 picas and 6 points, or 2¾ inches.

Also pertinent is the '''em''', which is a measure of width equivalent to the height of the bounding box at the specified point size. So, for example, 1 em at 12 pt size has a width of 12 points (1 pica or ⅙ inch), an em at 18 pt has a width of 18 points (1p6 or ¼ inch), and so on. As such, it's useful for specifying dynamic measurements linked to text size, as on websites designed for multiple devices and screen sizes. It's also good for determining the proper indent for a block of text, with 1–3 em being standard.[[note]]The default tab-stop is ½ inch, which is exactly 3 em at 12 pt; note, however, that while a tab-indent can be set manually, it's better practice to set the auto-indent feature in em units for more consistent and satisfactory results).[[/note]]

Finally, due to quirks in how text is interpreted in web browsers, the most reliable method for getting a specific size of text when designing a website is the '''pixel''' unit, or "px" for short. While pixel density has increased exponentially over the decades, a decision by Microsoft eons ago (back in TheNineties) to make the assumption of 96 pixels per inch (as opposed to Apple's usual assumption of 72 ppi) means that the px measurement can reliably be used to generate type in units of 1/96 of (what the viewport assumes as equivalent to) an inch, making it useful across platforms and devices. By this assumption, a font on the web set at a given number of pixels is generally the same as the same type displayed in a word processor at ¾ that numerical size in points. So 16 px on the web is generally the same as 12 pt type in a word processor, and so on.

!! The space between: Leading, Letterspacing, and Kerning

Type isn't just made up of the letters themselves, but the space that exists between them, between words, and between lines of text. Despite being "invisible" to most readers, they define the overall "feel" of a font just as much as (if not more than) the black parts, and designers ''agonize'' over the perfect spacing, down to thousandths of an em. [[http://ikern.com/k1/ An algorithm now exists]] to help take some the pain out of this part of font creation, but plenty of designers, whether out of pride, stubbornness or cheapness, insist on doing things the old-fashioned way.

'''Leading''' (rhymes with "heading")[[note]]so called because it was originally controlled by inserting strips of lead between the lines of type[[/note]] refers to the space between two lines in a block of text. Generally speaking, shorter lines need less space between them, while longer lines need more. Having ''no'' leading (a.k.a. being "set solid" or single-spacing) means that the lines of text are the same height as the point-size, leaving nothing in between, but unless the lines are very short or the type appears small in general, this is often undesirable.[[note]]Word processors actually usually insert a small amount of space, in the ballpark of a quarter of the point size, in between the lines; change the linespacing of a document set in 12-point text from "single-space" to "exactly 12 points" and see what happens.[[/note]] Leading is usually indicated by the total distance between the top of the bounding box on one line to the top of the next; so "12 on 14" or "12/14" refers to 12-point type with two extra points of line-space, taking up the equivalent vertical space of 14-point type from the top of one line to the next.[[note]]On the web, leading is controlled by the "line-height" CSS feature, though browsers don't always interpret it consistently. While CSS troubleshooting is outside the scope of the article, try setting it as a unit-less multiplier, rather than a fixed size or percentage, if it gives you trouble.[[/note]] With digital type, it is also possible to have "negative" leading (i.e., lines being closer together than their vertical height would normally allow); this can look good in display type and advertising, but you have to be careful that the letters on adjacent lines don't appear to collide, and it's never a good idea for body text.

'''Letterspacing''' (defined by the font's '''metrics''', or built-in space parameters set by the designer) determines how far apart any given letter is from its neighbors. It has default values that are attuned to the font's intended size or use, although it can be adjusted through the judicious use of '''tracking''', which increases or decreases the overall spacing between letters in a text. Tight spacing usually benefits large types[[note]]and has some leftover associations with TheSixties and TheSeventies, when the "tight-but-not-touching" style, made possible via phototypesetting, was at its peak[[/note]], 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”. Used in excess, tracking can make the text look affected.

'''Kerning''', on the other hand, is a special spacing-value between specific pairs of characters in order to correct visually uneven spacing. It adds or subtracts space between just those characters when they appear in sequence, so it doesn't produce a distracting gap (or worse, a collision between letters, which end up overlapping). There can be tens, to hundreds, to ''thousands'' of kerning pairs in a given font, depending on the number of glyphs overall and the designer's level of motivation. If kerning fails to resolve an issue satisfactorily, the designer may need to create a '''ligature''' (a single glyph of multiple letters together) to get around it; combinations of lowercase "f" and a following letter are common due to its prominent overhang.

!! Choosing (or making your own) fonts

Just as the number of books in existence continues to increase, so does the number of typefaces to choose from. Choosing the right typeface for the job can be a tricky business, particularly when you're not limited to the styles that come preinstalled on modern [=PC=]s. A good knowledge of the history and societal connotations of different typefaces, as well as that of the text itself, is essential. But if you're absolutely stumped for ideas, [[http://i.imgur.com/ftQLI45.png here's a handy (tongue-in-cheek) flowchart for designers]]. Conversely, if you want to know what that particular font is, try [[http://www.identifont.com Identifont]] or [[https://www.myfonts.com/WhatTheFont/ WhatTheFont]]. The success rate is often hit-or-miss, but they're probably the best resources out there nevertheless.

You can, if you wish, make your own fonts; it used to be quite the expensive hobby for those without access to the financial resources of a type foundry, 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 significantly cheaper. (That's "cheap" as in money, not time -- creating a typeface is a very tedious process, especially if you're including multiple character sets or styles; 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:

[[AC:Serif]]

Serifs are [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serif embellishments]] added at the extremes of the strokes of some letters[[note]]based on Roman square capitals and monumental inscriptions, which had an outsize influence on Italian Renaissance lettering[[/note]]. They were characteristic of the earliest non-blackletter 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.

To ease identification, serif types are usually broken up into subtypes based on their features. Terminology and the precise number of categories varies, but in general we have:
* '''Old-Style''' or '''Renaissance''': The types of the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin European Renaissance]], spanning from the late 1400s to the late 1600s. Generally split into two phases:
** '''Humanist''', '''Jensonian''' or '''Venetian Old-Style''': The earliest printed serif fonts, making a break with the earlier Blackletter tradition (e.g. the Gutenberg bible). More-or-less codified by the work of Nicolas Jenson c.1470, it is a close copy of the formal book-hand then in use by scribes in Venice, with mild line contrast as though written with a broadnib pen held at a shallow angle. The crossbar of the lowercase "e" sits at an angle, and the whole thing feels more "written" than "designed". Italic type doesn't exist yet.
** '''Garalde''', '''Aldine''' or '''French Old Style''': Named after printers Aldo Manuzio and the later Claude Garamont, both of whom established models that numerous others followed. First used by the Aldine Press in printing a book by Pietro Bembo about a trip up Mount Aetna around 1500, it features a lowercase "e" with a horizontal bar and overall more regular proportions and details. Line contrast is low-to-moderate. The French old-styles in the manner of Garamont and his contemporaries continue this theme, gradually becoming more formalized and distinct from writing. Italic type exists (also first printed by the Aldine Press), but at the time is completely independent of the upright (roman) style. The major contribution in French old-styles is the use of slanted capitals to flow with the italic lowercase; previously, only upright (roman) capitals were used apart from swash (calligraphic) initials, which were usually written in after printing.
* '''Transitional''': A maddeningly imprecise term that deals with a "transition" from the "old-style" Renaissance typefaces to the so-called[[note]]by the people who used them in the 19th century[[/note]] "Modern" faces of the industrial age. In general, the stroke angle goes from diagonal to upright or nearly upright, under the influence of the handwriting of the period using the pointed pen. There is greater contrast from thick to thin, and a greater influence of geometry. Because the term is so vague, it's often broken down into several subgroups:
** '''Baroque''' or '''Dutch-taste''': The types of the Enlightenment, characterized by the work coming out of the Low Countries during the 17th and early 18th century, particularly Amsterdam and Antwerp. The overall style is similar to the 16th-century French models, but is more condensed and has a darker overall impression, influenced by the blackletter styles still prevalent there. These types were brought to England by Dr. John Fell in the early 18th century, influencing the subsequent work of William Caslon. Italic type is starting to be used in combination with the roman, but only tentatively.
** '''Rococo''', '''Neoclassical''' or '''Réalist''': Coming in for a relatively brief period in the late 18th century, these types reflect a growing obsession with geometric purity[[note]]As in the grid-drawn ''Romain du Roi'' by Philippe Grandjean[[/note]], with types designed with a ruler and compass rather than by eye. Contrast is much more pronounced than before, and italic types more closely resemble their roman counterparts, being more readily intermixed. Key output from this period comes from John Baskerville in England, along with Pierre-Simon Fournier in France and Joan Michael Fleischman in Holland. Technical improvements in ink and punchcutting allow much sharper corners and thinner strokes on type, and in combination with smooth, bright white "wove" paper, there was a belief among critics that reading them for long stretches would cause blindness. Others were more enthusiastic; Benjamin Franklin actually wrote to Baskerville, praising his work.
** '''Scotch Roman''' or '''Scotch Modern''': Types [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin originating in Scotland]] at the end of the 18th century, influenced in equal measure by the Neoclassical faces from England and the Didones from France and Italy. The first Scotch faces were cut by Richard Austin for Wilson & Sons in Glasgow and Miller & Richard in Edinburgh, and were closely followed by John Drury for Caslon & Sons in London, who had found it difficult to compete using their existing Baroque inventory. Once the types made it to the U.S., they were widely copied, being seen as a less austere alternative to the continental Didones. A compact version of Scotch, known as '''Ionic''', was the predominant style of newspaper typeface for a century after its introduction. There's some debate as to whether they should be considered as Transitional or Modern types, however, as Scotch has an overall Didone structure, yet it also has bracketed serifs (sloping smoothly into the body of the letter rather than meeting at a corner) and lower contrast, which it has in common with the late Transitional faces.
* '''Modern''', '''Didone''' or '''Romantic''': The quintessential types for fashion magazines, epitomized by the work of Giambattista Bodoni in Italy, the Didot family in France, and (to a somewhat lesser extent) Justus Erich Walbaum in what is now Germany. Everything adheres to strict geometry, with a clear vertical axis to all letters. Serifs are barely-there hairlines, with abrupt transitions between thick and thin strokes. There are ball-shaped doodads on the ends of lowercase "a", "c" and "r", and the capital "R" has a wide bowl and a bendy tail that ends in a vertical curlicue, a feature also present in the exit strokes of the (equally rigid) italic. Bold type also starts to appear during this period, first as the ridiculously bold "fat face"[[note]]designed for eye-catching ads, since the Industrial Revolution had made advertisements for consumer goods very much a thing[[/note]], and later toned down for more subdued emphasis. By the end of the 19th century, there is a pronounced backlash against these types, with the Arts and Crafts movement and adherents such as William Morris advocating a return to calligraphic roots, and American printer Theodore Low De Vinne commissioning the '''Century''' series with lowered contrast and heavier strokes.
* '''Slab serif''' or '''mécane''': A style that grew out of the 19th-century "Modern", except with all strokes (including serifs) readjusted to more-or-less equal width in monoline, mechanistic fashion. Subtypes are '''Clarendons''', with smoother transitions between the serifs and the main strokes (akin to Scotch Romans), and '''Egyptians''', with mechanical, sharp corners (akin to Didone models). Originally conceived as type for headings and ads, they eventually found their way into more traditional roles, and the 20th century saw them following similar trends to sans serifs, giving rise to '''geometric''' (e.g. '''Memphis''') and even '''humanist''' (e.g. '''PMN Caecilia''') varieties.
* '''Glyphic''' or '''flared serif''': Reminiscent of letters cut into stone, as in the original "Roman capitals" found in monumental inscriptions. The criteria are almost entirely based on the shape of the serif, which leaves it open to interpretation; while '''Trajan''' (based on actual Roman inscriptions) is undoubtedly a member, some would put even '''Optima''' (traditionally thought of as a sans serif) in here, along with a good number of decorative or titling faces not explicitly based on stonecarving. It's kind of a catch-all category.

Some, such as typographer Robert Bringhurst, invent terms for 20th-century styles such as "Lyrical Modern" and "Postmodern", but they encompass such a broad range of influences that it's hard to say whether these will stick in the long term. In general, subsequent styles are defined less by their design elements than by the technologies that enabled a growing and increasingly diverse collection of typefaces, including the pantograph, hot-metal typecasting machinery, phototypesetting, and the rise of personal computers and digital fonts.

OK. So with that out of the way, here are some of the most well-known serif types:

* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baskerville Baskerville]]'''. A late 18th-century face named for its designer, the calligrapher and printer John Baskerville. Baskerville was a master of pointed-pen “copperplate” calligraphy, and it shows in the fine details and pronounced stroke contrast of his typeface. Upon its introduction in the 1750s, it received both acclaim and scorn, with proponents such as Ben Franklin praising its beauty, and critics suggesting prolonged reading of text set in it could cause blindness. Baskerville himself always took care to use plenty of whitespace to offset the fine-lined nature of his type, however, which is not always followed by others who have used his work. The Monotype version bundled with [=macOS=] is not especially robust, which makes it especially necessary to handle with care. ('''Baskerville Old Face''', bundled with Windows, isn’t Baskerville’s at all, but based on a copy by Isaac Moore for the Fry Type Foundry of Bristol.[[note]]Baskerville’s original types were unavailable because his widow had sold them to the predecessor of Deberny & Peignot in France, so it is necessarily a somewhat loose interpretation.[[/note]])
** As with other historical revivals, there are multiple versions of “Baskerville”, some better than others. The most usable modern versions include '''[[https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mrs_Eaves Mrs. Eaves]]''' by Zuzana Licko, an elegant display version named for Baskerville’s housekeeper-turned-wife, and '''[[https://www.stormtype.com/families/baskerville-original Baskerville Original]]''', a direct revival by František Štorm of Baskerville’s original types, available in two optical sizes. A free version geared towards body text, '''[[https://github.com/impallari/Libre-Baskerville Libre Baskerville]]''' by Pablo Impallari, is also available.
** Baskerville’s types were influential among his contemporaries, and they produced designs that were similar to (or outright copies of) his work. As mentioned above, Isaac Moore’s version is widely avaialble as Baskerville Old Face; '''[[https://store.typenetwork.com/foundry/cartercone/fonts/big-moore Big Moore]]''' by Matthew Carter is a modern display version intended for large headings. Elsewhere, William Martin, the brother of the chief assistant to Baskerville’s punchcutter, went on to design and cut his own version for the printer William Bulmer around 1790; this was revived in the 20th century under the '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bulmer_(typeface) Bulmer]]''' name. Richard Austin cut similar types, but with even greater contrast, for publisher John Bell's British Letter Foundry in 1788, which were revived by Monotype in 1931 as '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bell_(typeface) Bell]]'''; they were revived again in the 21st century by Commercial Type as '''[[https://commercialtype.com/catalog/austin_and_austin_news/austin Austin]]''', supporting a large character set in a wide variety of styles.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bodoni Bodoni]]'''. A textbook "Modern" 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 (essentially an update of its hot-metal version to be metrically compatible with the ITC incarnation), but is a more austere slab serif font with distinctly less loopiness. '''[[https://www.marksimonson.com/fonts/view/bookmania Bookmania]]''' by Mark Simonson attempts to distill the better aspects of the typeface by combining the structure of the original Bookman with the over-the-top loops and swashes of the phototype era; how it's used is up to the discretion (or lack thereof) of the typographer.
* '''[[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 typeface for ''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. "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 River Thames. Modern type designer 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]]The rest of the type is believed to be buried under the bridge Cobden-Sanderson dropped it from, as it was [[UsefulNotes/TheTroubles bombed by the IRA]] in 2000 and had to be reconstructed.[[/note]]
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garamond Garamond]]''': Typefaces based on the work of Claude Garamont[[note]]The attested spelling of his name, homophonous with the name of the type[[/note]], whose types cut in Paris during the first half of the 16th century set such a high bar that they replaced Aldus Manutius's original types at the Aldine Press in Venice, and were imitated in and out of France well into the next century. There is a more "sculptural" quality to the letterforms compared to Italian predecessors, along with some intentional irregularity in the mix, most noticeable in the varying slant of the italics (designed by Garamont's contemporary, Robert Granjon). Good for setting a classy, readable text with an "old world" flair[[note]]such as the U.S. editions of the ''Literature/HarryPotter'' books[[/note]]. Note, however, that the name "Garamond" has been applied to a great many typefaces of widely varying quality. You can't go wrong with '''Adobe Garamond''' or (more recently) '''Garamond Premier''', however. For those without a budget or access to Adobe software, '''[=EB=] Garamond''' is a free offering with an extensive character set (including Cyrillic and Greek), which even the [[CausticCritic famously opinionated]] Erik Spiekermann has praised as "one of the best open source fonts around"[[http://twitter.com/espiekermann/status/434362030552657920]].
** 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]]'''. A Scotch Roman font native to the computer screen. It has larger characters than Times New Roman, with old-style (or "lowercase") figures. One of the first outline fonts explicitly designed for screen use, emphasizing legibility through simplified details and extensive hinting. 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 done in Renaissance style, while Adobe's '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arno_(typeface) Arno]]''', designed by Robert Slimbach and released in 2007, is a modernized take. '''Brioso''', also by Slimbach, is similar but more closely based on the style of writing Jenson's types imitated. Another, '''Catull''', was 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]]


[[AC: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) in general.

Sans-serif types were invented around 1816, first appearing in a specimen book by William Caslon IV[[note]]the ''other'' Caslon's great-grandson[[/note]], but gained acceptance only gradually, taking off around the turn of the 20th century. Since then, several different styles have proliferated:
* '''Grotesque''': Also referred to as "'''gothic'''" (which referred to ''all'' sans serifs until other genres started appearing), these are the result if you take the serifs off a Didone typeface, equalize the stroke widths and simplify the details a touch. The letterforms are generally "closed up", with small apertures, and strokes ending in somewhat haphazard angles. Capitals are wide and relatively uniform in width. Capital "R" tends to have either the bowed Didone leg or a straight leg seemingly straining under the weight of the bowl; lowercase "g" can be single-story, as in '''Akzidenz-Grotesk''' (1897), or double-story, as in '''Franklin Gothic''' (1904).
* '''Geometric''': A trend that burst onto the scene in the late 1920s in [[UsefulNotes/WeimarRepublic Weimar Germany]], based on the radical typographic experiments at the Bauhaus. Epitomized by '''Futura''' (released by the Bauer Type Foundry in 1927), the lowercase is based largely on geometric shapes (circles, squares and triangles), while the capitals are modeled after Roman monumental inscriptions. The boom in geometric sans serifs during TheRoaringTwenties and TheGreatDepression goes hand-in-hand with the Art Deco aesthetic of the same time period. Ironically enough, the country that gave rise to geometrics soundly rejected them during the 1930s, as UsefulNotes/NaziGermany promoted the use of the overtly Germanic blackletter script instead.[[note]]Then they turned around and abandoned blackletter in 1941 after they realized nobody in Nazi-occupied territories could ''read'' the damn thing.[[/note]] Geometrics in general are useful for evoking the Art Deco era, but the most iconic examples are overexposed, so it helps to hunt for something less ubiquitous than Futura or Kabel.
* '''Neo-grotesque''': A reaction to the postwar return to popularity of grotesque sans serifs among Swiss designers, neo-grotesque designs like '''Helvetica''' and '''Univers''' take the turn-of-the-century grotesques and iron out the quirks in the name of cool, understated rationality. The overall look is similar to previous grotesques, but more uniform in structure, with strokes tending to terminate horizontally or vertically wherever possible. While neo-grotesques arose through the Swiss design movement of TheFifties and TheSixties, they've been ubiquitous ever since, with Helvetica in particular becoming a part of the typographic "furniture" (pun intended). There are still non-Helvetica standouts (witness Roboto and San Francisco just within the past few years), but the entire genre is literally ''everywhere''.
* '''Humanist''': In contrast to the Didone basis of grotesque sans serifs, a humanist sans takes its basic structure from the Renaissance typefaces of the 15th and 16th centuries. They first arose in the early decades of the 20th century with typefaces such as '''Johnston''' and '''Gill Sans''', but they weren't codified as a separate style until after UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, with the advent of '''Syntax''', '''Frutiger''' and others. The lowercase "g" is often (though not always) two-story, and the overall letter shapes are closer to calligraphy, sometimes with pronounced differences in stroke contrast, as in '''Optima'''. This style is much favored for informational signage due to its good legibility and is generally more useful for long-form text than other types of sans serif.
It's also not uncommon to see blends of different sans-serif styles, such as a geometric-grotesque (such as '''Proxima Nova'''), or a humanist-geometric (cf. '''Avenir'''), but these are the basic styles. With trends over the past few decades of designing a sans-serif companion to new serif types, it's not inconceivable to encounter "transitional" (humanist-grotesque) sans serifs as well, but they're generally lumped in with either "humanist" or "grotesque" depending on which way they lean.

Anyhow...

* '''[[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/ITC_Avant_Garde Avant Garde]]''', initially designed for the magazine of the same name, is a geometric typeface designed to be "edgy" and "hip" but has lost that feel from overuse thanks to its inclusion in the [=PostScript=] standard. 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).
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Century_Gothic Century Gothic]]''': Monotype's SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute, licensed to Microsoft so they could avoid paying for the [=PostScript=] licensing. A modern remake of a 1930s font called '''Twentieth Century''', pre-installed on Windows computers, which was itself a SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute for '''Futura''' (see below).
* '''[[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/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]]'''. A type family released by American Type Founders starting in 1904 as part of Morris Fuller Benton's project to systematize the various headline faces inherited from ATF's predecessors.[[note]]The "Franklin" probably refers to Benjamin Franklin, in reference to the Central Type Foundry of Philadelphia.[[/note]] 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.
** More broadly, Franklin Gothic makes up the extra-bold end of what's often called the "News Gothic family", made up of various fonts of similar but differing designs. '''News Gothic''' makes up the regular weights and widths, '''Alternate Gothic''' is at the condensed/compressed end of the spectrum, and '''Lightline Gothic''' and '''Monotone Gothic''' are at the light/expanded end. Revivals usually take one of these designs and extrapolate them through the remainder of weights and widths: '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benton_Sans Benton Sans]]''' does this for News Gothic, '''[[http://atftype.com/atf-alternate-gothic.php ATF Alternate Gothic]]''' does it for Alternate Gothic, and '''[[https://www.fonts.com/font/itc/itc-franklin-gothic ITC Franklin Gothic]]''' (as well as its own revival, '''[[https://store.typenetwork.com/foundry/fontbureau/fonts/itc-franklin ITC Franklin]]''') does it for Franklin Gothic.
** In terms of free offerings, Pablo Impallari's '''Libre Franklin''', based on the original Franklin Gothic, is available on Google Fonts, while '''[[https://www.theleagueofmoveabletype.com/league-gothic League Gothic]]''' is a free revival of Alternate Gothic No. 1 from the League of Movable Type.
* '''[[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 type designer 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]].
** '''Spartan''' and '''Twentieth Century''' are the SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitutes from Linotype and Monotype, respectively. Both have long been superseded by the real thing, but Twentieth Century is notable for being the basis for '''Century Gothic''', a SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute for '''Avant Garde Gothic'''.
** Newspapers in the mid-20th century more often than not relied on a pair of SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitutes, '''Tempo''' (from Ludlow, for headlines) and '''Vogue''' (from Intertype, for captions and similar). They were both notable in that they had multiple alternate characters in order to resemble not only Futura, but also other similar typefaces.
** '''[[http://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", it was modeled after machine-cut signage from the mid-20th century in [[BigApplesauce New York City]], such as the lettering on the outside of the [[WretchedHive Port Authority Bus Terminal]]. 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, however, it and its clones had been [[GoneHorriblyRight overused by amateurs and professionals alike]], largely subverting its original intent of being the least obtrusive font imaginable.
** "Helvetica" is actually the ''second'' name for the typeface, coinciding with its re-release for Linotype machine composition. It was originally known as '''[[http://www.fontbureau.com/nhg/ Neue Haas Grotesk]]''', and had a slightly different look than the Helvetica that exists today. After decades of successive transitions to new technologies, Linotype and Font Bureau went back to revive the original in 2011, although it's not clear whether it will ever be as popular, since it lacks the sheer name cachet of "Helvetica".
** '''Neue Helvetica''' (or "Helvetica Neue" as it appears in font menus) is a 1983 revision to bring order to the haphazardly-expanded Helvetica family, adopting a numbered classification system for its various weights and widths akin to '''Univers''' (described below). On the whole, it looks nearly identical, but it's slightly boxier. The razor-thin end of its weight range was employed by Apple in the [=iOS=] 7 interface overhaul before they ditched it in [=iOS=] 9 for their own '''San Francisco''' (described below).
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arial Arial]]''': The SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute from Monotype, ostensibly based on one of their old sans serifs but unquestionably meant to ape Helvetica to avoid the [=PostScript=] license fee. [[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's probably Helvetica.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Univers Univers]]'''. TheRival: Both it and Helvetica were released 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. Univers is known for its numbered style classification system, whose "periodic table" advertising made a splash (even if it wasn't big enough to overcome the Helvetica hype).
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unica_(typeface) Haas Unica]]''': A project in the late 1970s to combine the strengths of both Helvetica and Univers[[note]]which had recently come under the ownership of the same foundry due to corporate mergers[[/note]], creating the ideal neo-grotesque for the phototypesetting age. The only problem was, by the time it actually came out, photo-setting was on the decline in favor of desktop publishing, and Unica was virtually indistinguishable from Helvetica, which had already been digitized. The design sat unused and largely forgotten until 2015, when two rival digital versions came out: '''[[https://lineto.com/Lineto.com/Frontpage+Features/LL+Unica77/ Unica77]]''' from the team that designed it back in TheSeventies, and '''[[https://www.linotype.com/7918/neue-haas-unica.html Neue Haas Unica]]''' from Monotype (who had bought out Linotype, who had bought out Haas).
** '''[[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/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. Transport for London keeps the official version[[note]]currently '''[=Johnston100=]''', created in 2016 for the typeface’s centennial and ahead of the Elizabeth Line’s completion[[/note]] under tight licensing restrictions for official applications only, but several retail versions, such as '''P22 Underground'''[[note]]commissioned by the London Transport Museum[[/note]], exist for use by the public.
** '''[[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 [[UsefulNotes/NationalRail British Rail]] in particular) from the late 1920s to the mid-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.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kabel_(typeface) Kabel]]''': A geometric typeface released the same year as Futura, but much more calligraphic in form, featuring an "e" with a tilted crossbar, diamond-shaped dots over "i" and "j", and an unusual, "one-and-a-half-story" lowercase "g".[[note]]To wit: it's basically a sans-serif version of the designer's own '''Koch-Antiqua'''.[[/note]] The original metal version has long ascenders in the Art Deco fashion and was quite popular in the 1960s, although it's probably best known in the form of '''ITC Kabel''', which blows up the x-height in typical ITC house style. This version (especially in the "black" weight) seems especially popular for advertising. More recently, '''[[https://www.fonts.com/font/linotype/neue-kabel/story Neue Kabel]]''' tries to split the difference in x-height between the original and ITC versions, making it more usable for body text.
* '''[[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, and was actually updated along the way to make it less glaringly identical.
* '''[[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.

[[AC: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/ITC_Zapf_Chancery ITC Zapf Chancery]]''': A chancery italic font by Hermann Zapf, with longish extenders and a hand-lettered, calligraphic flow. Long included as a standard font on [=macOS=], it can be used to add an elegant feeling to invitations, personal cards, and ad copy. The swash (decorative) capitals mean that it's not so good for setting in all-caps, not that the average computer user seems to care.
** '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monotype_Corsiva Monotype Corsiva]]'''. Monotype's SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute, created to circumvent Adobe's [=PostScript=] licensing. ([=PostScript=] relied mostly on fonts from Linotype and International Typeface Corporation, leaving Monotype out of the loop.) Not quite as blatant a ripoff as some of Monotype's other [=PostScript=]-knockoffs from the same era, Monotype Corsiva is relatively well-done in its own right. A standard install with Windows and/or Office, much as Zapf Chancery is for the Mac.
* '''[[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.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zapfino Zapfino]]''' is a famously complex script typeface, originally designed in 1944 by Hermann Zapf but now released until 1998, with implementation overseen by David Siegel and Gino Lee. It features a plethora of ligatures and alternate characters, involving near-limitless customizability in the hands of a skilled digital typographer. Originally offered in four complementary font files, it's now available as a single file with alternates accessible via [=OpenType=] features. Though a standard install with [=macOS=], the bundled system version has a much higher x-height than the regular Zapfino; this version is known commercially as "'''Zapfino X'''" (for "Mac OS X" and/or "x-height").

[[AC:Monospaced]]

Fonts where every glyph occupies the same amount of horizontal space. Monospaced fonts first came about through the use of typewriters, which, due to mechanical limitations, had to advance the same width every time a key was pressed. This results in some odd-looking compromises, with characters like "i" and "l" being extremely wide, and "m" being squished in horizontally. Later typewriters allowed for a limited number of character widths that varied depending on the system, but in the public's mind, a typewriter font always equals monospace. In spite of typewriters having been long supplanted by word processors[[note]]first as dedicated machines, then as specific apps on a device[[/note]], however, monospaced fonts have found new life in coding, where horizontal alignment is of great importance. They've also remained as the typefaces of choice for screenwriting, since the image of a writer of hammering out a script on a typewriter has held that much sway in the popular imagination. As a result, they continue to be produced for these niche uses. Fonts for code in particular are also tuned for character distinguishability, with a slashed numeral "0" and distinct glyphs for capital "I", lowercase "l" and numeral "1".

* '''[[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/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 on Windows.@@
* '''[[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 script fonts originally designed for professional printing, like Zapfino, Mistral, or Brush Script.
* '''[[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.
* '''[[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/Prestige_Elite Prestige Elite]]''': One of the other big-name typewriter fonts for the IBM Selectric, this one never caught on with the same kind of popularity as its sister face Courier, though it's still available. Just as Courier has inspired a variety of similar fonts, so has Prestige; '''[[https://mbtype.com/fonts/triplicate/ Triplicate]]'''[[note]]previously released as "'''FB Alix'''" for Font Bureau[[/note]] by Matthew Butterick expands on the original by including true italics and small caps, as well as proportional and code variants via [=OpenType=] features.

[[AC: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/Copperplate_Gothic Copperplate Gothic]]''': An all-caps, monoline quasi-sans-serif with tiny slivers for serifs, well-used by those trying to emphasize their "serious" credentials, such as bankers and lawyers. It's actually an outlier for designer Frederic Goudy, who much preferred his many old-style serif types, but this has ended up his most popular and best-remembered font.
* '''[[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 owes to 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.

[[AC:Blackletter]]

Also known as "Gothic", although in typography that refers to a particular style of sans serif. Blackletter developed during the middle ages in Europe and was actually the first kind of movable type used -- Gutenberg's 42-Line Bible was set in it. Vintage blackletter has a number of features that differentiate it from other scripts, including particular forms of "A", "X", "k", "r" "x", "w", and "z", use of the long "s" ("ſ"), and ligatures for "ch", "ck", "ss/sz" ("ß") and "tz"; these are usually omitted or Latinized in modern fonts. Blackletter held on mostly in German-speaking territories once serif typefaces took hold, but took a steep nosedive in popularity in the middle of the 20th century [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarII for some reason]]. Nevertheless, it's still useful for newspaper mastheads, beer labels and pub signs, diplomas and award certificates, [[HeavyMetalUmlaut heavy-metal bands]], [[UsefulNotes/TheRenaissance Renaissance faires]], and [[PuttingOnTheReich aspiring Fascists]]. Just use with care, and ''never'' use to set in all-caps, which just looks ridiculous.

Historically, there were four basic kinds of Blackletter:
* '''Textura''' or '''Textualis''', the darkest, densest version, which was used for deluxe manuscripts. It was all angles and straight sides, with the letter "o" being a hexagon and (in handwritten books) many neighboring letters sharing these vertical strokes, "weaving" words and lines together into a sort of unbroken "cloth"[[note]](or "textile", hence "textura")[[/note]]. This, combined with the dearth of horizontal connecting strokes, could result in entire words looking like a bunch of verticals, with the word "minimum" being a typical example (it's why the letters "i" and "j" have dots). This version was often highly ornamented, the better to showcase the skill of the scribe, and is still the go-to style for newspaper mastheads[[note]]when they bother to use blackletter at all[[/note]]. On the other hand, the 1930s saw the introduction of an extremely pared-down style of Textura, akin to a sans-serif (e.g. '''Deutschland''' and '''National'''). Unfortunately, the era of their release meant they were inextricably linked with UsefulNotes/NaziGermany,[[note]]just look at those names![[/note]] and are now rarely used to portray anything else.
* '''Fraktur''' by far the most common blackletter style used for ordinary texts. In the diagnostic character of "o", one side is flat and the other is rounded, which gives it a "broken" or "fractured" appearance. Wider, less ornate and more open than Textura, it is on the whole more readable, which probably explains its relative popularity. Still, you're unlikely to encounter it that often nowadays except in a historical context.
* '''Bastarda''' or '''Schwabacher''': A rounder style, softer than the harder edges of textura and fraktur but still visibly "gothic" in style. The diagnostic character of "o" is rounded on both sides, but comes to points at top and bottom. The German "Schwabacher" style in particular has a peculiar lowercase "g" with a flat "lid" crossing the vertical strokes.
* '''Rotunda''': The widest and roundest form of blackletter, most similar to its origins in Carolingian minuscule[[note]]the scribal alphabet promulgated in Charlemagne's era[[/note]]. The lowercase "o" is completely round, and the "d" resembles its uncial form with a leftward-curving stem. It's the most similar to serif fonts by a long stretch, but perhaps for that reason (i.e., it's not "blackletter" enough), it's not as common.
Different countries that used blackletter also had cursive styles based off them: France has ''Civilité'', for which Robert Granjon (now remembered for the "Garamond" italics) was known during his lifetime, while Germany had ''Kurrent'', which was taught right up until the end of World War II. Both are known for being rather impenetrable to those used to roman-based cursive, despite being ostensibly based on Latin letterforms.

''Examples forthcoming...''

[[AC:Creative]]
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bauhaus_(typeface) Bauhaus]]''': A variety of stencil-style geometric fonts loosely based on [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herbert_Bayer Herbert Bayer]]'s 1925 "Universal Alphabet", characterized by curves instead of corners and an overall aesthetic not unlike vintage neon signs. There are plenty of variations on this theme, but '''Bauhaus 93''', released by Monotype in 1993[[note]]and essentially a copy of the earlier phototype font '''Blippo Black'''[[/note]], is a standard install with Microsoft Office and especially ubiquitous. These were especially popular in the 1960s and '70s, which is where a lot of Bauhaus-style fonts come from, including '''Blippo''' from [=FotoStar=] (which graces the title screen of ''[[VideoGame/SuperMarioBros Super Mario Bros.]]''), '''ITC Ronda''' and '''ITC Bauhaus''' from ITC, '''Cut-In''' and '''Pump''' from Letraset, and a good many others. More recently, '''Architype Bayer''' from The Foundry, released in 1997, resurrects Bayer's original unicase designs.
** '''[[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Typography_of_Apple_Inc.#Motter_Tektura Motter Tektura]]''', a Bauhaus-style font created by Austrian designer Othmar Motter in 1975, is an interesting case. Although it's very familiar (particularly to [=GenXers=] from the U.S.) 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.
* '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papyrus_(typeface) Papyrus]]'''. [[ForeignLookingFont Ancient-looking font]]. While not a particularly ugly font like Comic Sans, it's "a font from the early '80s wearing a week's stubble"[[http://practicaltypography.com/bad-fonts.html]] and is 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 type designer 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 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/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]]).

[[AC: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…

[[AC: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. His father, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linn_Boyd_Benton Linn Boyd Benton]] (1844–1932), invented a process of engraving using the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pantograph pantograph]], which allowed a single master typeface design to be manufactured in multiple sizes, where they previously had to be designed and cut individually.
* 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]] long before it was recognized as a distinct field. His released types are rather modest in number, but two of them (Electra and Caledonia) are considered classics of the hot-metal era[[note]]though their digital conversions leave something to be desired[[/note]], and another (Metro) was a newspaper mainstay for decades. His creative output was far greater than Linotype ever cared to bring to commercial release, but he has provided plenty of fodder for other designers; the Font Bureau and its alumni are particular devotees.
* Adrian Frutiger (Switzerland, 1928–2015): 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 (France, c.1510–1561): 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 Garamont's death. Note that the spelling with "t" is intentional and attested historically for his name, while the spelling with "d" is usually applied to the types inspired by him. They sound exactly the same in French, much like Dupond & Dupont (a.k.a. Thompson & Thomson) in the ''Franchise/{{Tintin}}'' series.
* Eric Gill (United Kingdom, 1882–1940): Best known for the typefaces Gill Sans and Perpetua, the tract ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/An_Essay_on_Typography An Essay on Typography]]'', and being a creepy, incestuous sexual predator.
* Frederic Goudy[[note]]rhymes with "cloudy"[[/note]] (United States, 1865–1947): A letterer and type-designer working in the first half of the 20th century, well-known for his many old-style designs influenced by the Arts & Crafts movement, first for ATF and later Lanston Monotype.[[note]]Many of his designs are still available through Lanston / P22.[[/note]] '''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goudy_Old_Style Goudy Old Style]]''' (1915,[[note]]part of an expansive and largely forgotten type family[[/note]] for ATF) is a standard install with Microsoft Office, while his (atypical for him) '''Copperplate Gothic''' (1901, also for ATF) is practically a cliché on business cards and letterhead. Credited with the aphorism, "Anyone who would letterspace lowercase would [[UnusualEuphemism steal]] [[BestialityIsDepraved sheep]]."
* [[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[[note]]often Latinized as "Aldus Manutius"[[/note]] (Italy, 1449–1515): A printer in Venice who used the first roman type to make a definitive stylistic break with handwriting, as well as the first italic types (both cut by Francesco Griffo). Also 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, which, 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, 1918–2015): Creator of Melior, Optima, Zapf Chancery, Zapfino, and perhaps most famously Palatino, and an early pioneer along with Donald Knuth in digital type design. His widow, Gudrun Zapf von Hesse, is a type designer and calligrapher in her own right and recently celebrated her 100th birthday by releasing another font.

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 Systems: You might have heard of them. Founded in 1982 by John Warnock in his garage, the company pioneered the influential [=PostScript=] page-description language, leveraging it to work with major type foundries such as Linotype and International Typeface Corporation to produce faithful digital versions of some of the most iconic fonts out there, jump-starting the boom in desktop publishing. Thanks to their suite of creative software, they have remained ever-present in the publishing industry, but their most major contributions to computing have come under the hood in the form of the aforementioned [=PostScript=] language, as well as the [=OpenType=] font format, which allows for selectable alternate characters, multiple character sets, and much else. Their Adobe Originals series of fonts is also well-respected[[note]]and also omnipresent, since they come bundled with Adobe software[[/note]], although their curious penchant for including an ahistorical "Th" ligature in with the standard set[[note]]i.e., it's on by default and can't be individually turned off[[/note]] on revivals of historical typefaces has been known to drive some creative professionals a little batty.
* 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 Inc.: 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=]). Apple's Core Text API is capable of adjusting character spacing and even switching optical sizes on the fly, which will be immensely useful to developers if it ever applies to anything beyond [=SF=].
* 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.
* [[http://www.emigre.com Emigre]]: Founded in 1984 by Rudy [=VanderLans=] and Zuzana Licko in Berkeley, California, its members were inspired by the arrival of the Macintosh to create entirely digital typefaces, with no metal or phototype antecedents. They gained notoriety through their eponymous ''Emigre'' magazine and its experimentation with "grunge" typography in the 1990s, which was decried by traditionalists; at the same time, they have produced hardworking screen faces such as the '''Vista''' superfamily, as well as elegant historical revivals such as '''Filosofia'''[[note]]derived from Bodoni[[/note]] and '''Mrs. Eaves'''[[note]]derived from Baskerville[[/note]]. Their '''Exocet''' and '''Mason''' fonts are also an inescapable facet of goth culture and and anything vampire-related.
* 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. Known for their rights structure, wherein individual designers retain ownership of the typefaces they've made and can take them elsewhere when they leave the company. (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.
* [[http://www.typography.com Hoefler & Co.]]: Formerly '''Hoefler & Frere-Jones''', a Manhattan-based foundry run by Jonathan Hoefler (previously together with Tobias Frere-Jones) that has produced a number of high-profile typefaces, including Hoefler Text (standard on [=macOS=]) and the ubiquitous Gotham. In 2014, Hoefler and Frere-Jones had a falling-out over Frere-Jones's position with the company, with Hoefler arguing that, foundry name notwithstanding, Frere-Jones was merely an employee and not a full partner. Frere-Jones ended up leaving the company (and the entire body of work he'd done there) to [[StartMyOwn start]] [[http://www.frerejones.com Frere-Jones Type]].
* 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, tightly-spaced letterforms with an exceptionally tall x-height, which 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. Letraset bought out ITC in the 1980s and took on its name, so a decent 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. The company is now based in Germany and technically owned by Monotype, although it still operates semi-independently.
* Monotype Imaging: Originally '''British Monotype''', the U.K. division of the American '''Lanston Monotype Company'''[[note]]which, after a series of acquisitions, is now the '''Lanston Type Company''', a division of the '''P22 Type Foundry'''[[/note]], now based in the U.S. 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. The company is 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++: Originally '''Unternehmensberatung Rubow Weber''' ("Rubow–Weber Business Consulting"), founded in 1972 by Gerhard Rubow and Jürgen Weber in Hamburg, Germany, it was one of the pioneers 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.
----
!!Examples:

[[AC:{{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.

[[AC:{{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.

[[AC:{{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.

[[AC:VideoGames]]
* ''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).

[[AC:{{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".]]

[[AC: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.

[[AC: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]].

[[AC:WesternAnimation]]
* 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.
----