W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > September 2010

RE: [css3-fonts] @font-face matching and font-style descriptor

From: Sergey Malkin <sergeym@microsoft.com>
Date: Tue, 14 Sep 2010 16:57:19 +0000
To: Chris Lilley <chris@w3.org>, Thomas Phinney <tphinney@cal.berkeley.edu>
CC: Tab Atkins Jr. <jackalmage@gmail.com>, John Hudson <tiro@tiro.com>, "John Daggett" <jdaggett@mozilla.com>, Sylvain Galineau <sylvaing@microsoft.com>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>, www-font <www-font@w3.org>
Message-ID: <F759D7752D3BBC4999CA69FF4FB8BC130262B6DE@TK5EX14MBXW652.wingroup.windeploy.ntdev.microsoft.com>
Thomas wrote:

> Um, yeah, there is. "I don't care whose fonts they are; as a designer, 
> I don't want to see fake bolds and/or fake italics showing up by accident 
> in my work." This is a pretty darn common position among serious graphic 
> designers, which is why the behavior in Adobe applications is the way 
> it is. (It happens to be a position I share, but that's not the point.)

Does it mean they do not care about matching font to content of the page? Do they prefer user not to see content emphasized where content needs it? Design is about delivering content in most effective and pleasant manner to users's brain. But this statement sounds similar to "There are three font designs: Comic Sans, Papyrus and everything else. I'll never use first two." Does not sound very responsible to me.
We are talking about desired result of not seeing simulated styles on the page and this is great, but stylesheet and UA can't solve all problems automatically. Just saying "never simulate" in InDesign does not work, right? You will carefully choose font faces and fallback fonts to be used as bold, or not use bold at all in your document. You will ensure that fonts you are using contain characters used on the page. But if you do not know content of your page or what styles you are going to use, this is completely different scenario from typographer working in InDesign. If you've done your homework, you will never see simulated styles. Your font choices will be honored and you do not need any additional help from CSS. If you didn't it is too late to rely on UA in correcting your mistake on user's machine. Blaming UA for your mistakes is even worse :).

CSS gives designer mechanism to specify choice of fonts in as much detail as required, but there are situations when support for simulation is still expected. Backward compatibility and real life experience of Web designers is one big thing, it can't be just thrown away. Performance considerations is another, e.g. large EastAsian fonts where sending two fonts over the wire or using it on resource-constrained device may be expensive. 

Consistency of the spec is another point. If we want to prohibit simulated styles, why this should apply to linked fonts but not fonts installed on user's machine? 

Received on Tuesday, 14 September 2010 17:00:25 UTC

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