Akiem Helmling, Bas Jacobs

If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old

TYPO Labs 2017 New Dimensions in Type Engineering | Saturday, 08 April | 3:00 pm | Cupola

Considering type designers as the astronauts in the typographic universe, OpenType Variable Fonts could be regarded as the new spaceship created and kindly provided by the industry. And why it’s already great: everything works perfectly and is cleverly engineered. Yet there is also a little downside: the not-yet-resolved delay happens when implementing the communication system back on earth. Therefore, it’s not (yet) possible to share anything from our discoveries with the designers at home.

But there is no need for frustration. Let’s think positive and productive, and take the time we have to look more carefully and think twice. No doubt, the spaceship looks great, cool, and fantastic. It’s brand new and we are all eager to board. But at the same time, we should also be realistic—it’s also just another spaceship. Like the others, it does not include an autopilot. Thank God.

Also in this vessel, the control and responsibility fully lie in the hands of the type designer. It’s up to us to decide how the story continues. Columbus did not discover America because his boat was better or faster then those of the others. But because he was daring to believe and go to the unknown. Even though we are living in a different time or playing a different game, we should be aware that the basic rules remain the same: using new technology will not make old ideas any better.

akiem-helmling400

Akiem Helmling

Underware's work is among the most popular of independent type foundries — happy-go-lucky, high-quality, text-friendly typefaces for both display use and comprehensive typesetting. Underware’s typefaces stand out thanks to unique aesthetics and a considered collective presence. Underware is a refreshing and intelligent team who, while taking what they do seriously,…
bas-jacobs400

Bas Jacobs

Underware's work is among the most popular of independent type foundries — happy-go-lucky, high-quality, text-friendly typefaces for both display use and comprehensive typesetting. Underware’s typefaces stand out thanks to unique aesthetics and a considered collective presence. Underware is a refreshing and intelligent team who, while taking what they do seriously,…

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