Say Hi to the type team

I want to offer my sincere thanks to Thomas Phinney for all the work he put into this blog. But despite his absence, “the blog must go on.” Everyone on the Adobe Type Development team will be contributing interesting bits about fonts and type technology. Some of them may be unfamiliar to some of you, so I’ll take this opportunity to offer a brief introduction.

Robert Slimbach has been designing typefaces for 25 years. He’s responsible for the design quality of the type library in general and the Adobe Originals series in particular. Robert’s designs have won numerous awards, including the Prix Charles Peignot and six TDC2 awards. He was instrumental in moving Adobe’s fonts toward broader language coverage, and was an early promoter for contextual layout and support for optical sizes in text families. designer profile

Ken Lunde is an authority on East Asian text handling and font technologies. His book “CJKV Information Processing“, now in its second edition, is a standard reference in the industry (catalog). Among many other accomplishments, Ken helped to define Unicode’s first Ideographic Variation Sequence registry.

Read Roberts develops and maintains the tools we use to make our fonts, including the AFDKO (Adobe Font Development Kit for OpenType) that we offer for free download (AFDKO site).

Nicole Minoza is our program manager, moving various projects along when she’s not running marathons or doing programming herself. She was a Political Science major (with a side in Computer Science) and is now working on her MBA.

Ernie March has worked on fonts for 25 years, many of them at Adobe. He handles most of our font testing, doubles as our release engineer, and occasionally finds time to help with font development.

Gu Hua is a recent addition to the team. She has worked on East Asian fonts for more than 12 years. Now she tests our East Asian fonts and related technologies.

Christopher Slye is the team lead for font development. He’s both a typeface designer and font technician. He maintains the databases we use to build our fonts, and was responsible for overhauling all our fonts to bring them up to current best practices. designer profile

Miguel Sousa got his MA in Typeface Design in 2005 from the University of Reading, where his Calouste design won a TDC2 award. He helps develop our newer font families, and is our in-house expert on Flash & Flex. Miguel serves as the main “answer guy” for font technical questions both inside and outside the company in forums like Typophile.

Paul D. Hunt became fascinated with languages and cultures early in life. This eventually led to a BA in International Studies. Paul’s affinity for languages and design then converged in typeface design. He landed an internship with P22, which turned into a multi-year job. Paul went on to hone his type craft at the University of Reading, where he graduated with merit from the Masters program in Typeface Design in 2008, then joined the Adobe team in January 2009. In addition to basic Latin, Paul has designed typefaces for Cyrillic, Greek, Devanagari and typefaces with extended Latin coverage to support African and American Indian languages. He is a frequent contributor to (and moderator for) Typophile, and helps maintain its wiki.

And of course I’m here too. I fell in love with letterforms in the 1970s, which led to a degree in graphic design. After working in the publishing industry I joined the Adobe type team in 1986, and have been involved with our font development, tools and technologies ever since. I originally hoped to design type, but found I could make more of a difference managing the team and doing things like helping to define the behavior of OpenType layout features.

Adobe also has a Type Development team in Tokyo, led by Taro Yamamoto with font technologist Masataka Hattori and typeface designer Ryoko Nishizuka. designer profile We’ll have more about their work in another post.

We’re all looking forward to more communication with each of you as our work here continues to evolve.

– David Lemon

4 Responses

  1. Si says:

    The blog is dead! Long live the blog! Great to see Tom’s work continue. Looking forward to some interesting posts. Cheers, Si

  2. james says:

    Out of curiosity, what’s the development status of Thomas Phinney’s unfinished Hypatia Sans family. Will it ever be finished and released?[David: Ironically, Thomas’ departure is speeding up the completion of Hypatia Sans. The project was stalled because Thomas had so many other items on his plate. But now that we’re forced to have someone else finish it, it’s moving ahead nicely. Expect a commercial release later this year.]

  3. Andrew Meit says:

    David and et al…Thanks for coming foreword to maintain this blog.Something to consider reflecting on the 25th Mac anniversary. One of the reasons I got a Mac was its font support. However, from the beginning Adobe strove to lock down fonts and lock out designers. As an early betatester and later lead tester, Fontographer challenged Adobe. With FontLab now the main tool still standing and within reach for many; Hence, over the years Adobe changed and became more enlighten as your teams mission now reflects that well.However, there is room for improvement yet. As for as I can tell, Adobe has not fought for “all” type designers, not just Adobe’s, right to IP protection both at the OS/web level or at policy level with Washington (Music and movies are overly protected, yet my fonts are not even close!).Another area is tool/font education. Where is our “John Nack” in the type world! Where is the classroom in a book for Opentype design? tutes for Opentype?? Whereas Altsys strove to write award winning informative User guides and Type on the Desktop booklet, Fontlab failed and seems not interested in reaching out to teach well its tool. A user forum makes not a teaching guide! Why not Adobe to support publicly and well teaching others best use of Fontlab so all graphic designers can enjoy the craft of typedesign. Lastly, teaching the general public about who creates type, how type-craft is learned, and why type matters. I hope the next 25 years Adobe can expand its mission to grow, teach and protect not only its turf, but all type designers. Please, end the type war. Thank you.[Hey, Andrew – long time no see!My perspective on what Adobe has/hasn’t done is somewhat different. As far as protecting fonts, we were instrumental in getting the U.S. Copyright Office to recognize fonts as copyrightable software, and we got a federal court ruling that fonts are valid subjects for design patents. And along with Microsoft we’re presently working with the W3C to try to institute a mechanism for web fonts that is acceptable to the font development community.You can see we have only a handful of people, so we have to put our time into the areas we think will make the most difference. That means our educational efforts are necessarily limited. But we’re hoping to get more material onto the web site (already a reasonable resource), and we’ll remain active in the main on-line forums.- David L]

  4. Isn’t it amazing the number of issues the world wide web has brought up? I can see from my recent introduction to graphic and web design that font is very important to both printed materials and websites. A great type has the ability to stand alone as a design for a poster, logo, etc with the master layout of a good designer. I agree that your hard work on fonts should be protected.

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David Lemon

I fell in love with type in '77 and joined Adobe in '86. These days I manage the type development team. I like being at the intersection of art & technology, and am working to make good type easier for everyone.

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