Re: Fonts used in print

Subject: Re: Fonts used in print
From: "Michael West" <mbwest -at- bigpond -dot- net -dot- au>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 15 Dec 2002 08:21:20 +1100



----- Original Message -----
From: "JB Foster" <jb -dot- foster -at- shaw -dot- ca>
>
> I haven't seen much (well, once I did in an internal manual) of Arial in
> text, other than headings (which is often a default setting). I have
always
> heard that Arial is Microsoft's answer to Helvetica. But since Aril is so
> ugly, why does Helvetica always pop up in discussions whenever fonts are
> discussed.


I don't think Arial is ugly. It was designed expressly
as a screen-font substitute for Helvetica. Helvetica
is an extremely successful sans serif typeface, widely
used in display settings -- signs, packaging, headlines.
It is not designed for setting body text -- although it is
often used for that purpose, especially in some European
countries where sans serif fonts are used more often for
body text than in the US and UK.

Its successors as Microsoft screen fonts, by the way, are
Verdana and Trebuchet. Both of those are generally
preferred for on-screen text over Arial.

Americans and Brits are likely to prefer serif faces for
body text. Sometimes sans serif faces are thought to
be more suited for technical material. I think this is
derived from their traditional use for statistical and
mathematical data--sans serif faces generally presenting
a cleaner representation of numbers than serif faces
(where the serifs are merely visual noise rather than
tracking aids).

Most native English-speakers will find unweighted sans
serifs (Helvetica-style) more tiring to read in large blocks
than serif faces (Times-style). This assumes that the
type has been properly set with respect to size, placement,
leading, column width, and so on.

If you were to try the same comparison in France, Belgium,
or Switzerland, you would have different results. There,
the primary schoolbooks have traditionally been set in
sans serif type.

--
Mike W
Melbourne



^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Check out SnagIt - The Screen Capture Standard!
Download a free 30-day trial from http://www.techsmith.com/rdr/txt/twr
Find out what all the other tech writers, including Dan, already know!

Order RoboHelp X3 in December and receive $100 mail in rebate, FREE WebHelp
Merge Module and the new RoboPDF - add powerful PDF output functionality
to RoboHelp X3. Order online today at http://www.ehelp.com/techwr-l

---
You are currently subscribed to techwr-l as:
archive -at- raycomm -dot- com
To unsubscribe send a blank email to leave-techwr-l-obscured -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Send administrative questions to ejray -at- raycomm -dot- com -dot- Visit
http://www.raycomm.com/techwhirl/ for more resources and info.



Follow-Ups:

References:
RE: Fonts used in print: From: JB Foster

Previous by Author: Re: TOC article in INTERCOM -- things that made me go "HUH??"
Next by Author: Re: Fonts used in print
Previous by Thread: RE: Fonts used in print
Next by Thread: Re: Fonts used in print


What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads


Sponsored Ads