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Re: 508 Fonts


From: Elizabeth J. Pyatt
Date: Feb 10, 2009 1:40PM

There are a lot of user preferences, but I think one recommendation
is to ensure that the "x-height" (roughly the height of a lower-case
letter)and is not too small. You also want to ensure that characters
are not too thin.

In reality, I check the x-height and width for the lowercase "o". I
tend to think fonts with a robust "o" are a little more legible that
those with short or skinny o's. This applies to both serif and
sans-serif type

Another area to look are are similar characters (e.g. 1 (one) vs. l
(ell) or 0 (zero) vs. O (capital O)). It's better if these ambiguous
pairs are designed to be distinct.

Arial is not a bad choice, but you can consider other fonts such as
Verdana (designed for monitor use), Tahoma or Trebuchet (this was
very popular a few years ago). Note that as display qualities
improve, you may have more latitude in font selection.

For serif fonts, I would recommend Palatino/Book Antiqua, Century
Schoolbok or Georgia over Times New Roman (see the x-height on the
"o" again).

Note that the reason serif fonts were first discouraged on the Web
was because they were rendered so horribly jagged in comparison to
print, but again improvements in display technology make it less of
an issue.

Hope this helps


P.S. Beyond font face, you also need to consider font size (not too
small a point size) and font color (reasonable contrast with the
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-Elizabeth J. Pyatt, Ph.D.
Instructional Designer
Education Technology Services, TLT/ITS
Penn State University
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