Friday, November 2, 2007

Should I change to a serif font?

This blog currently uses a template with a sans-serif font. Some people find serif fonts more readable. I have put up a poll to determine whether my readers would prefer a serif font. Please click on the thumbnail below to see what this blog would look like with a serif font if you would like to make an informed decision.

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Rick Darby said...

I'd go with a serif font. Sans serifs (known as "Swiss style" -- one is even named Helvetica) had a brief vogue in the '60s and '70s, but look dated now.

Very few books use sans, and their designers know something about readability. I don't know whether it's inherent or just conditioning, but the fact is that we are overwhelmingly accustomed to serif fonts, which includes virtually every type face since the invention of movable type.

Even in ancient Rome, letters of the Latin alphabet had "serifs," which are said to be derived from marks left by the chisel on stone or marble at the end of each stroke.

Ted Slater said...

Tough call -- small print is usually serif (the little marks at the edges of letters seem to help our eyes understand those letters more efficiently).

Headlines are often sans serif.

But online is a different animal. Perhaps until hi-res monitors are more common, it's a legibility wash between serif and sans serif.

FWIW, I've become accustomed to reading sans serif text in online media....