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.