MyFonts.com Sponsoring TidBITS — In the information-scarce days before the Web, I pored over computer-related publications, and even though I’ve never been a designer, I especially liked font catalogs. They featured impeccable design, with the sample letter forms standing out clean and black on the white paper, all supported by a paragraph of text extolling that font’s lineage, virtues, and uses. It’s been a long time since I saw a font catalog, but I’ve equally enjoyed the Web site of MyFonts.com, whom we’d like to welcome as our newest sponsor.
As with the catalogs, MyFonts.com revels in typography, providing biographies of famous type designers and font descriptions. But what gives MyFonts.com its appeal is its dynamism – the entire site is backed by a comprehensive database that lets you start with any font and see more typefaces by the same designer, foundry, or vendor, plus other faces that are visually similar. The TypeXplorer tool takes this browsing to the next level for most fonts, letting you ask to see similar typefaces that vary by boldness, width, contrast, or x-height. You can see the full character set for any font, plus enter a limited amount of your own text to see how it looks. Another tool called WhatTheFont (previously called Identafont) will try to match an uploaded scan of text to fonts in the MyFonts.com 10,000 font database.
Like other Web sites that give you a window into vast databases of information, such as the Internet Movie Database (IMDB), MyFonts.com is just plain fun if you’re at all interested in typography. And if you’re a design professional, you can buy many of the fonts you find in MyFonts.com. Either way, I think you’ll enjoy spending some time browsing around MyFonts.com. [ACE]