Blog Archive

  • All you need to know about hyphenation in CSS

    Automatic hyphenation on the web has been possible since 2011 and is now broadly supported. There is however far more control available to designers than just turning on hyphens.

  • Top Tunes 2018

    Back after a decidedly long hiatus, here’s a compilation of favourite songs I bought this year, and a damn fine year it was too.

  • Upcoming changes to the CSS you need for variable fonts

    Two weeks ago I was invited to Berlin for a CSS Working Group meeting. One afternoon was dedicated to resolving issues with the CSS Text and Font modules. Two resolutions in particular will affect the CSS we need to work with variable fonts.

  • How to use variable fonts in the real world

    Using variable fonts in the real world turns out to be tricky. This post explains how we achieved it for the new Ampersand website and what we learned along the way.

  • Getting started with variable fonts

    Variable fonts are a new font format offering unprecedented flexibility. They will be landing in web browsers and native operating systems within 12 months. Learn how to try them out now.

  • The importance of putting your champions on a pedestal

    A champion is the person in your client’s organisation who can pinpoint the barriers to a great solution going live. Champions are obstacle clearers, problem insulators and praise singers. Find them and treat them with the reverence they deserve.

  • Choco Leibniz

    In a rare excursion we delve in some Friday political commentary from Half Man Half Biscuit. It’s National Shite Day.

  • Chrome just got darker

    A couple of days ago, my installation of Google Chrome updated itself from version 49 to version 50. The timing was fortuitous and relieved me of a growing text rendering headache.

  • Use rems for global sizing, use ems for local sizing

    An unedited extract from my forthcoming book, Web Typography. This chapter is quite technically focussed and hopefully stands well on its own. The other chapters I’ve written contain much higher proportion of typographic theory.

  • Conference diversity from an organiser’s perspective

    Clearleft we know we have a responsibility to the industry to help redress the gender balance, and that means putting together diverse line-ups at our conferences. This is much easier said than done, but difficult doesn’t mean impossible.

  • Back my Web Typography book

    I’m writing a book on Web Typography which I’m hoping to crowdfund on Kickstarter. It’ll be a handbook for designing beautiful and effective typography in modern websites, and I hope it’ll be available in time for Ampersand conference this year.

  • Brief thoughts about web typography in 2015

    Last week Digital Arts online featured me, among others, in a piece on web fonts in 2015. My main points were twofold: more interesting treatments are required, and type designers keep giving us more fantastic materials to work with.

  • List of pangrams

    There used to be a page on Wikipedia listing pangrams in various languages. This was deleted yesterday. Pangrams can be occasioanlly useful for designers, so I’ve resurrected the page of here, pretty much as it was in Wikipedia.

  • The Scourge of Helvetica Neue Light

    I’m no lover of Helvetica but neither do I hate it. That said I really do have an aversion to Helvetica Neue Light, or rather an aversion to when Helvetica Neue Light is used without due thought and attention, and particularly within user interfaces.

  • Scattered notes from Dots

    The inaugural Dots conference provided a very enjoyable day on the loose subject of innovation. I was in a mood to listen rather than take notes but I did jot down a few bits and bobs. Here they are made into some sentences.

  • Soft hyphen bug in Webkit

    Investigation into, and a fix for a peculiar bug in Mac-based Webkit browsers, including Safari and Chrome.

  • The Big Dog Cometh

    Since I knackered my Achilles tendon in December, I’ve been getting back into cycling and mountain biking in particular. The Brighton Big Dog race is on in August and uses the same tracks I now ride most weeks. We’ve entered a Clearleft team.

  • Web Typography is now open source

    In December 2005 I launched the Elements of Typographic Style Applied to the Web, a practical guide to web typography using Robert Bringhurst’s book “The Elements of Typographic Style”. The site needs updating, so I’ve now open sourced it on Github.

  • In conversation with Brighton station about CCTV

    A couple of days ago I was stuck at Brighton railway station, watching trains get delayed and eventually cancelled. While sat on the concourse I noticed the sheer amount of CCTV and various surveillance devices in plain view all around the station.

  • A new year, a new design

    To my surprise, Clagnut.com was last redesigned in September 2008. Well, it’s all change, with a new redesign launched today. It’s been created from the typography outwards, responsive from the beginning and elegant on huge as well as tiny screens.