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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Which font do you use ?? ~ Dubai becomes first city to have its own font

Do you know  what groups :  Aabohi, Amudham, Anangu, Bamini, Boopalam, Eelanadu, Jaffna, Kalki, Kalaimakal, Keeravani, Kilavi, Nagananthini, Azhagi, .. .. ..


The Crown Prince of Dubai has posted stunning footage of the world’s tallest building looming out of a sea of fog.  Before reading more on why Dubai is in news – when you type a mail or a Word doc, which font do you use ?  I extensively use ‘Palatino Linotype’ .. .. this post is on a new font.   The new “Dubai Font” claims to  integrates the Arabic and Roman alphabets and will be available for use in 23 languages. The font will soon be used by the Dubai government in all official correspondence, Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum said at an event on Sunday.

In metal typesetting, a font is a particular size, weight and style of a typeface. Each font was a matched set of type.  In modern usage, with the advent of digital typography, "font" is frequently synonymous with "typeface", although the two terms do not necessarily mean the same thing. In particular, the use of "vector" or "outline" fonts means that different sizes of a typeface can be dynamically generated from one design. Each style may still be in a separate "font file”.  In typography, a typeface (also known as font family) is a set of one or more fonts each composed of glyphs that share common design features. Each font of a typeface has a specific weight, style, condensation, width, slant, italicization, ornamentation, and designer or foundry (and formerly size, in metal fonts).

Palatino is the name of an old-style serif typeface designed by Hermann Zapf, initially released in 1948 by the Stempel foundry and later by other companies, most notably the Mergenthaler Linotype Company.  Named after 16th century Italian master of calligraphy Giambattista Palatino, Palatino is based on the humanist types of the Italian Renaissance, which mirror the letters formed by a broad nib pen; this gives a grace reflecting Zapf's expertise as a calligrapher.

Dubai has become the first city in the world to get its own front, the government announced on Sunday. The type face, simply called “Dubai Font”, comes in both Arabic and Latin script and will be available in 23 languages.   The task of translating the calligraphic Arabic script to digital typography has challenged designers for decades. The conundrum lies in translating graceful calligraphic marks to pixel-based digital formats, and making sure they’re legible for a range of media—from print to websites, video screens, and mobile phones.

It was created in partnership with Microsoft and is now available to Microsoft Office 365 users around the world.    For ever-ambitious Dubai, the font seems to be a relatively minor achievement. The United Arab Emirates' largest city has long been known for megaprojects, including the world's tallest building and the world's largest indoor ski resort. Last year, it announced plans to create a whole new city intriguingly builtaround “happiness.” But praise for the “Dubai Font” was accompanied by something else: biting criticism of the UAE.

The complaints had nothing to do with the font's design. Instead, critics focused on the language used to promote the font, which focused on free expression. “Expression knows no boundaries or limits,” one video promoting the font said. “Expression is strength and freedom. It defines who you are.”  In a tweet, the Crown Prince Hamdan bin Mohammed al-Maktoum described the font as a “unique project” that reflects the heritage and culture of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and “reaches out to the world” with the hashtag “#ExpressYou”.

Dubai, the largest city in the UAE and home to the world’s tallest tower, has championed technology and innovation as it looks to broaden its appeal. However, the region has also drawn criticism for its poor human rights record and its restriction on free speech. The Human Rights Watch says the UAE often “uses its affluence to mask the government’s serious human rights problems. The government arbitrarily detains, and in some cases forcibly disappears, individuals who criticized the authorities.” In March, prominent human rights activist Ahmed Mansoor, who repeatedly drew the ire of authorities in the UAE by calling for a free press and democratic freedoms, was arrested. Last year, a 25-year-old British tourist faced jail in in Dubai after telling the police she had been raped.

Interesting ! – now which font do you use often ? is it default or do you pick one ?? – the list at the start of the post is the name of some of the Tamil fonts.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

2nd May 2017.

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