TYPE DESIGN INFORMATION PAGE last updated on Sun Aug 19 17:04:08 EDT 2018

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LUC DEVROYE


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Hinting and the web

Hinting has traditionally been used for design on grids and pixel screens. Dave Crossland (Google) summarizes the state of affairs in early 2018 quite accurately: Designing to a pixel grid is no longer required, because most of screen reading is on phones which have very high resolutions that are better than print. Since there are still a good chunk of users with Windows, it is still important to apply auto hinting for their reading comfort, but most users don't benefit much from hints. Of course if you are trying to retail a font family for top dollar then you will go the extra mile and do hand hinting, but the value of this for users is going to continue to decline. I think we are already at the point where there is zero distinction between typefaces intended for print and digital; that future is here, it just isn't evenly distributed. Certainly, forward-looking companies will stop investing in hand-hinting from this point on, closing one of the ugliest, darkest and least understood chapters of type design.

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Luc Devroye ⦿ School of Computer Science ⦿ McGill University Montreal, Canada H3A 2K6 ⦿ lucdevroye@gmail.com ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org/fonts.html