Saturday, September 17, 2005

Are we becoming font snobs?

In the interest of getting you to talk to me -I'm going to do something I RARELY do online (I like to keep up the illusion that I am a nice guy) -I am going to DELIBERATELY bring up a controversial topic...

I'd like to know your unabashed feelings about my recent post at:

"My point is not that FOG is better than x, y or z BUT that we must not enhance a certain caste mentality of what it takes to be a typographer and how glad we are to be using only the best tool."

In all the talk of which is the better tool -let’s not forget our pedigree! And let’s not belabor new typographers with this extra burden which only serves to stifle their creativity as they listen to us debate the issue."

"I would hate to think that a newbie would worry over which tool before he/she begins a work of art. Let them not be encumbered by our advice until they have their feet wet in forming the glyphs and especially spacing them."

" If FOG is for amateurs then what is so wrong with that? Must they perform Python scripting and digital signatures before they are even out of diapers?"

"Perhaps FOG can continue to serve as the doorway for the timid, introspective creative types who don’t want to be told it has to be done a cetain way with only certain software?"

Soooo... what's it gonna be???

Contrary opinions are invited and totally welcome!

Jimmy G.
Der FontMeister


Blogger poohbah said...

Jim, I didn't take the time to read through the post. Apologies.

My take on what I can only assume is the gist to your sentiment however, a reasonable case can be argued toward the folling thoughts:

1) FOG has been the leader in ushering in the design of digital typefaces, and has become the basic industry standard tool over these many years.

2) Familiarity with FOG's intuative interface has been both appreciated, allowed for efficacy in production, and has been most notably emulated by virtually all the top typeface interfaces available to the market today. (They took notes.)

3) The learning curve for typography, depending on what one would like to acheive as a result, is made easier by the way that FOG had originally made the interface visual to represent the basic principles in typography. As an artform, it can be possible for anyone starting out, or by veterans in their craft.

You shouldn't think of yourself as pretentious in this sense, Jim. Afterall, you have been at the forefront of this technology for many years. If anything, I wish you were better respected and that users of FOG were more vocal in praise toward all your efforts. It is unfortunate that Macromedia didn't seem to take an approach that would have helped to limit FOG's competition in the market, but then again - they knew they had what amounted to an industry standard that stood by its own merit. My only complaint toward that however, is that it became unfortunate that the program didn't progress with the times, which is why the recent updates are so exciting to we who use the tool.

3:00 AM  
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1:16 AM  
Blogger Luke Gedeon said...

Hi Jim,

My Dad, Mark Gedeon, mentioned that he has a friend who has been working in typography for a while. He did not mention the fact you practically invented the user interface of all font software everywhere, but I thought that was really cool.

Your name came up in response to my post yesterday about using a font editor for the first time. I really enjoy graphic design but had never taken the time till this week to get into fonts.

Just wanted to say hi, if you are even monitoring this blog anymore. Do you have another site now where you currently posting?

5:40 PM  

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