[scribus] Which font used in the logo - Armada Regular

Dave Crossland dave at lab6.com
Sun May 25 23:49:48 CEST 2008

2008/5/25 avox <avox at arcor.de>:
>>>> But fonts are functional software, and photos are typically decorative
>>>> artwork.
> And photos take only seconds or minutes to produce, while
> fonts take months or years.

Complex programs also take years to produce. As do encyclopedias with
10,000 core articles of high quality. As do open street maps.

>> I believe that since fonts are software, and since type designs are
>> functional - a type design you can't read with is non-functional -
>> then they ought to be free in the same way as program software is, and
>> functional information like encyclopedias is too. The "glyphs are art"
>> reasoning is at best a misunderstanding of design as art, and at worse
>> a sneaky way for proprietary software developers to justify DRM.
> So if function is all that matters, noone would need more tha Courier /
> Times / Helvetica surely? Those are quite readable.

Usually this argument only includes one typeface, because including
several indicates that a variety of type designs are needed.

That's because, although the ability to read words is the primary
function of a type design, and being recognisable as a "letter" is
what defines shapes of letters from other shapes, that is not the
_only_ functional aspect.

We need many more free fonts than those three - just as many as
existing as proprietary software - because there are _many_ secondary
aspects of type designs that have a massive effect on how well they

There are also many tertiary aspects about how type designs are
implemented in software too.

For example: Helvetica is a great type design for signage and large
scale use, but it not intended for reading paragraphs of text at 10pt,
and if its font isn't hinted well, it will work very poorly at small
sizes. Other sans serif type designs are intended for reading long
texts with, and can be well hinted to function on screen as well as on

> IMO a font designer has the right to profit from his/her work, and as long
> as one needs money for living, the font designer should decide how
> to pay for the use of his/her work.

I could answer that nobody is forced to be a type designer. Most of us
cannot manage to get any money for standing on the street and making
faces. But we are not, as a result, condemned to spend our lives
standing on the street making faces, and starving. We do something

But that is the wrong answer because it accepts an implicit
assumption: that without total control of the use of font software,
type designers cannot possibly be paid a cent. Supposedly it is all or

The real reason type designers will not starve is that it will still
be possible for them to get paid for type design; just not paid as
much as now.

Restricting copying is not the only basis for business in software. It
is the most common basis because it brings in the most money. If it
were prohibited, or rejected by the customer, business would move to
other bases of organization which are now used less often. There are
always numerous ways to organize any kind of business.

Probably type design will not be as lucrative on the new basis as it
is now. But that is not an argument against the change. It is not
considered an injustice that sales clerks make the salaries that they
now do. If type designers made the same, that would not be an
injustice either. (In practice they would still make considerably more
than that.)

There are plenty of ways that type designers could make a living
without selling various ways of using fonts. This way is customary now
because it brings type designers and publishers the most money, not
because it is the only way for them to make a living. It is easy to
find other ways if you want to find them.

Here are a number of real world examples of free font software being paid for:

A type designer finds 1 person who wants a font exclusively, and they
pay 100% of the development cost (including a profit margin)

A type designer finds 2 people who want a similar font unexclusively,
and they pay 2/3rd of the cost each, leaving 1/3rd profit margin.

A manufacturer introducing a new computer will pay for the porting of
fonts onto the new hardware.

An OS developer introducing a new OS will pay for the porting of fonts
onto the new text layout engine.

A lingusitics organization employs type designers to enable the
organization to promote literacy in very poor areas of the world.

The sale of teaching services also employs type designers.

I'm not sure that anyone has a _right_ to profit, because if someone
with a better business model starts their business, they ought to
drive that person into bankruptcy.

There is nothing wrong about doing business and making profit and
making a living, as long as that business isn't socially harmful; many
kinds of businesses are illegal, many more are socially frowned upon.

Proprietary software is socially harmful, and I think I may have a
better business model for making fonts than the proprietary guys; I'm
certain I have a business model that can co-exist with them. Afterall,
the only OS developers who have survived Microsoft are either owned by
Microsoft (eg: Apple) or free software developers :-)

(This email is largely parodying http://www.gnu.org/gnu/manifesto.html :-)


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