WordCamp St. Louis: It’s about time. It’s about type!

Mary Baum was one of the last ses­sions of the after­noon and was talk­ing about typog­ra­phy on the web. Mary has a long his­tory in design and typog­ra­phy and believes it’s about damn time we have full access to type on the web.

The web-type drought

Up to recently we have all be frus­trated by the lim­ited typo­graph­i­cal options we’ve had for 15 long years. 5 choices is not enough, it’s time we had more.

Mary pin­points the web-type drought end­ing on the day Paul Irish posted his work on @font-face in Sep­tem­ber of 2009. He saved us. :)

We came from a time of Times, Geor­gia, Ver­dana, Tre­buchet, and Tahoma. Now we thank­fully have tons of options with dif­fer­ent type­faces. Embed­ded Open­Type has been around since 2004 but it’s only till recently that type foundries have opened up licenses for use on the web.

Back­ground with WordPress

Mary just got started with Word­Press within the last year but in that time has put hun­dreds of hours into learn­ing Word­Press themes and just enough PHP to be dan­ger­ous. She got started with the The­matic frame­work but is now work­ing with the Gen­e­sis frame­work but also uses Ele­gant themes for some sites.

Type options

Cufón, sIFR, Type­kit, fonts.com, Google web fonts are all options that we have now for using type­faces in our sites. There’s plenty more but those are the ones Mary pointed to as worth using and, in some cases, pay­ing for.

All those hosted solu­tions are good but Mary still prefers going the route of using your own fonts on your own server using @font-face. One thing to be care­ful of though is upload­ing the license infor­ma­tion to your own server as well so that it’s clear you have the rights to use that font on the web.

When using @font-face you want to be care­ful to make sure you have a bul­let­proof CSS set up for your font. Fontspring posted an updated ver­sion of bul­let­proof CSS to use that will cover all the way back to IE6.