Linked by Eugenia Loli on Thu 28th Jun 2007 21:39 UTC
Original OSNews Interviews Today we feature a very interesting interview with David Turner, one of the main Freetype developers, discussing the project's past and future. These days, David continues his work in Freetype even after having been hired by Google.
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Fuzzy = Better? Huh?
by Core Duo on Fri 29th Jun 2007 09:47 UTC
Core Duo
Member since:
2007-06-24

The thing is, it's pretty easy to get used to the fuzziness

While I respect and appreciate the work of David, I have a hard time being convinced by the fact that fuzzy fonts are better. Granted that fonts that use ClearType on Windows are reshaped and are not authentic, but at least they have better contrast. Unless you plan to write printed artwork in an advertising company, I think it's not worth having to pass through the fuzzyness punishment.

I'm also having a hard time believing that he hasn't tried Windows Vista at least one time to see how fonts look like on the new version of Windows. After all, fonts on Windows has been a reference for many people. I've seen many requests on the Freetype mailing list to know how to make fonts look like those on Windows. He may not like Windows, but at least trying it would be interesting.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Fuzzy = Better? Huh?
by ValiSystem on Fri 29th Jun 2007 13:05 in reply to "Fuzzy = Better? Huh?"
ValiSystem Member since:
2006-02-28

but at least they have better contrast

My experience is that high contrast strains the eye, and create some curious reaction in how image is perceived by the brain. To me, high contrast fonts create a kind of bright glow around characters, and with high density the glow goes over other character, making them very difficult to read. So as you can guess i prefer fuzzy rendering, and i often sigh after Mac OS X font rendering. Since breezy & feisty, font rendering is much better though.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Fuzzy = Better? Huh?
by apoclypse on Fri 29th Jun 2007 13:32 in reply to "RE: Fuzzy = Better? Huh?"
apoclypse Member since:
2007-02-17

You should see Gutsy. Its beautiful. If I can notice a difference then they must have definitely improved. I personally like OSX's font rendering it works great on OSX itself but in safari on windows it looks off due to the lack of uniformity.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Fuzzy = Better? Huh?
by archiesteel on Fri 29th Jun 2007 14:41 in reply to "Fuzzy = Better? Huh?"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Unless you plan to write printed artwork in an advertising company, I think it's not worth having to pass through the fuzzyness punishment.


It's a question of personal preferences. I *really* prefer the OS X/Freetype way of rendering fonts. Then again, I use rather high resolutions (1280x768 on my laptop, 1600x1200 on my desktop) so the fuzziness is barely noticeable.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Fuzzy = Better? Huh?
by davidturner on Fri 29th Jun 2007 15:36 in reply to "Fuzzy = Better? Huh?"
davidturner Member since:
2007-06-29

it's all about preferences. there is no universal "best" setting so anyone is entitled to his own opinion. You're free to like high-contrast better, which is exactly why there is a auto-hinter (or truetype bytecode interpreter) in FreeType. See, it's not like I was limiting your choices...

And I still think that it's pretty easy to get "used" to the fuzziness. that doesn't mean you'll get all hot and warm about it though :-)

regarding Vista, there are plenty of screenshots on the Internet to know exactly what it looks like. I just didn't feel the need to buy a new computer just to look at that.

Edited 2007-06-29 15:40

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: Fuzzy = Better? Huh?
by Alex Forster on Fri 29th Jun 2007 20:25 in reply to "Fuzzy = Better? Huh?"
Alex Forster Member since:
2005-08-12

You're not alone. I think ClearType is beautiful. It achieves the contrast of aliased with three times the detail. I mean, that's what every filtering scheme hopes to ultimately achieve, right? If so, ClearType sets the bar.

And according to the ClearType patent, the glyphs are only resized horizontally/vertically. No points are moved, so the tails on your 'y' will still look as curvy as ever.

Edited 2007-06-29 20:27

Reply Parent Score: 3