Posts tagged with adaptation - page 4

ZX Courier

Originally commissioned by IBM in 1955 for use on their typewriters it soon became a de facto standard on typewriters, screenplays and successfully made the jump to graphical user interfaces with the advent of TrueType after a slow start as a bitmap font.

I created this font around 2006 as part of the BASIN package which required some fonts for people to use in their apps and games but was cleaned up in 2018 to try and make it feel more distinctly Courier and less a generic mono-spaced serif.

The monospace design of the original makes it work quite well on the Spectrum with even spacing. It works well for title, information and blocks of text and gives a smart feel that does not feel as dated as Courier does on modern platforms.

ZX Chicago

Susan Kare’s iconic Chicago shipped with the original Apple Macintosh in 1984 and was the standard system font until MacOS8 replaced it with the TrueType Charcoal look-alike. It did receive a dust-off in 2001 to become the primary font on the newly launched iPod range.

I created this font around 1990 using Artist II on a Spectrum +3. Chicago wasn’t quite so iconic back then and the real challenge was trying to get a 12-pixel high proportional font into an 8x8. (MacOS has a 9pt ‘Chicago’ that is devoid of the distinctive bold flair). To keep the tall narrow style I reduced the width of some characters but then created a more relaxed ‘wide’ variant too. In early 2021 I added a “Twiggy” variant based on screenshots of the Mac prototypes that sported an earlier version of Chicago.

It achieves the job of looking like Chicago while not being too similar at a pixel level. It’s the feel of the 12-point using some of the style from the 10-point. I’d think this is what the 9pt should have looked like with some tweaks for mono-space and low-res readability.

This font works well for titles and large blocks of text although could benefit from a proportional renderer.