Better rendering, expanded language coverage – and other notes.

Yet a new and also a final version of the roman in the 4 weights is coming. This version takes advantage of the last 6 months of research and experience testing rendering in the large group Google web fonts that Sorkin Type Co. has released into service.* In addition to better rendering this version will be prettier and more consistent in its construction.

Perhaps the best things about it will be the addition of glyph coverage for a far broader range of languages including Czech, Hungarian, Maltese, Polish, Romanian, Slovak, Turkish, Western Apache (Diné bizaad), Welsh, and many others.

In addition, this version will also cover non-letter glyphs that are present in the Mac Roman encoding, ISO 8859 or Latin 1, and Windows ANSI. It seems unlikely that anyone will make much use of these but this will make Merriweather complete.

Because this version will be final it will be also (finally) be hinted for Windows in VTT.

*These include: Hammersmith, Pompiere, Black Ops, Voltaire, Short Stack, Fjord, Contrail, Spinnaker, Ovo, Limelight, Pinyon Script, Supermercado One, Vast+Shadow, Gravitas, Passero, Atomic Age, Asset and Goblin.

About Merriweather

Merriweather: a type family being developed by Eben Sorkin.
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10 Responses to Better rendering, expanded language coverage – and other notes.

  1. I’m looking forward to this!

    On the topic of foreign glyphs: I’ve noticed that the ring in the ‘å’ looks a bit too much like a diacritic to my Norwegian eye. In the Scandinavian languages, the ‘å’ is not just an ‘a’ with diacritics, but a letter of its own. If you compare the a-ring to the dot over the j/i in the word ‘sjåførlærerinne’, maybe you see what I mean? No diagonal stress, no stroke contrast, and because of the relatively large size of the ring, the “diacritic effect” appears quite alien for us native Scandinavians. I guess the same goes for the degree sign °C, but percent % seems to have recieved the appropriate care.

    This is certainly no deal-breaker for me since it’s really only visible at headline and display sizes, but I thought it deserved a mention.

    • Merriweather says:

      I was able to get selection of Scandinavian books and had a look at a larger group of texts to get a sense of what the ring tends to feel like. Would you mind if I sent you some images to respond to as the next version gets closer to being done?

  2. Merriweather says:

    Thanks for pointing this out! I will adjust the shape. The size of the mark was chosen so that the ring would not close at small sizes but I suspect I can make it smaller.

    Do you have a URL to share? Or how do you use the font?

  3. There’s no need to make the a-ring smaller or positioned lower, at least not if it compromises legibility at small sizes. I’ve used Merriweather on an internal web project set in Regular 12px and headings in Regular 24px/18px. For the largest heading size, the slightly sticking out a-ring starts being noticeable. But I guess our visitors wouldn’t notice or care.

    If you need any inspiration, I found this (not exactly modern) website that has a number of samples, some of them pretty far-out in their design:
    http://www.typografi.org/galleri/aring/oslobygninger_1.html
    The author Thorbjørn Eng discusses the pros and cons of such crazy designs. Basically: Tread carefully if you want to deviate from the norm🙂

    Personally, I consider Adobe Caslon Pro to be a good example of how a “similar stroke a-ring” can be done, if you want to go down that road. (Also, that typeface demonstrates how to properly do a one-story italic ‘æ’)

  4. Sometimes it can look like a piece of pasta!
    http://www.typography.com/ask/showBlog.php?blogID=256

    When can one expect italics for Merrweather?

    • Merriweather says:

      Thanks for the link Bjørnar! You can expect a lighter ring.

      Wei Huang, it looks like Italics may arrive in February.

  5. Sounds great, I have tested Merriweather on my Kindle 4 and it is one of the best fonts I’ve tried on it. Looking forward to the italics.

    • Merriweather says:

      Thanks! Do you have a photo site account? I would love to see what the rendering is like. If you post an image showing how it looks that would be great to see and helpful as well. I was not aware that you could put new fonts into the Kindle. That sounds exciting!

  6. I’ll post pictures here when I can. It’s certainly possible on a couple levels, hacks exist with the earlier Kindle versions, (http://wiki.mobileread.com/wiki/Kindle_Font_Hack_for_all_2.x_and_3.x_Kindles) , and the control could get quite fine, even up to what type of hinting to use.

    I am using an un-hacked Kindle 4, with the Calibre plug-in. http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=118635 Non

  7. Hey, just a short note: The colon in bold weight suffered from interpolation, I guess. The dots are overlapping and appear as a bullet.

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