Re: Serif/San Serif Fonts

Subject: Re: Serif/San Serif Fonts
From: Heilan Yvette Grimes <HEP2 -at- AOL -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 11 Apr 1995 20:24:02 -0400

If you study font history you'll find that most, if not all, early fonts
(16th century or so) were all serifed. This had absolutely nothing to do with
readibility. As I stated before readibility has to do with how you are
taught. If you are raised on serifed fonts your comprehension, reading spead,
etc., is greater than with san serifed fonts. If you are raised on san serif
fonts then your readibilility, copmprehension, etc. is greater with san
serifed fonts.

The serifs actionally had a purpose. Early printing methods (Gutenberg, et.
al) were crude and had problems with quality. Smudges prevailed. The purpose
of the serifs was to act as mini inkwells. During the printing process when
the typeblocks were all inked up the serifs would collect a bit more so that
the letters printed evening on the page. With the advent of offset and
photooffset over the last half century the inks and processes have improved
so that serifs aren't needed for the technical aspects of printing. But now
people are used to them. It was only with improved printing processes that
san serif became a viable type option.

--Yvette


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