Shinn vs. Papazian challenge

Nick Shinn's picture

About a year ago in a Typophile thread, in response to Hrant's advocacy for a science-based, theoretically-driven approach to legibility, I argued that legibility was a practical matter really, and that any typeface could be turned into a text type, without benefit of science or theory. He suggested I try my own Eunoia.

Sorry for the delay. It hasn't taken that long to do, just finding the time and motivation has delayed it.

Here is a pdf comparing Eunoia Text with Eunoia, Helvetica Medium Condensed, Univers 57, and ITC Franklin Gothic Book Condensed.

I've shown the face 8/9 justified, in a newspaper column format. I don't think this is a book face, as Hrant would probably prefer, but the challenge was to make a text face, and the news setting is a good test of that, and certainly qualifies as immersive reading.

I could have taken it further, but that would have departed from the type design, which is necessarily high contrast and condensed.

I would have liked to have shown it compared with faces that also have this quality, such as Britannic or Ocean, but I don't have anything like that.

Have I proved my point?

paul d hunt's picture

Loops on bold fonts now form lots of words for books.

but srlsy, i'm going start using 'plus' instead of 'and' when i speak (using all u sounds).

piccic's picture

I reminded Nick's statement (and I quite agreed, but I have to read in full all there, especially John Hudson's reflections).
And I was going to ask precisely the same thing: please Nick, offer a new PDF with the setting!

hrant's picture

{I have removed this post because Nick has forbade me from participating in threads he has started. Continued: - 12/17/09}

nina's picture


Nick Shinn's picture

Thanks, Hrant.


IIRC the abstinence was Hrant's idea.

Chris Dean's picture

Some of the better reading I have had here in a while. I love a good are vs. science debate. In these materials x-height, character count, letter-spacing and hyphenation are confounded. It is not possible to determine "legibility" until first define what that means, select dependent variables, generate a testable hypothesis, develop additional materials, select a sample population and generate a balanced experimental design.

nina's picture

I'm not getting it.

"The sample I showed would be suitable for a magazine sidebar."

What kind of magazine?

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