Input, (more than) a typeface for (more than) code

Curator: Jesse Ragan
date: April 14, 2015
Categories: Experience Design, Typography
Input samples

David Jonathan Ross’ new typeface Input is an unbelievably limber workhorse, arguably the most versatile suite of screen fonts ever created. And Font Bureau has made it free for us lucky cheapskates to use (for private/unpublished purposes).

More than just a typeface, Input includes an interface to customize the fonts, with a mind-boggling array of options. Use the Interactive Preview to test different combinations of forms for characters like “a,” “g,” and zero. Use the sliders to adjust width and weight. Choose sans, serif, or mono. Then, with a few clicks, download your own customized version—generated on the fly, server-side.

Although a monospace version of Input is available (and pitch-perfect), David Jonathan Ross encourages us to rethink the assumption that monospace fonts must be used for writing code. The proportional-width versions of Input demonstrate his thesis: the characteristics of a good coding font aren’t tied to monospace proportions. (Read his well-reasoned argument in “Questioning Monotheism.”)

As a bonus, a special version of Input is available as a system font replacement for Mac OS Yosemite. Input wins over Helvetica in a contest of screen legibility—there’s no doubt about that. And it’s refreshing to hear a friendlier personality in your computer’s typographic voice.
Interactive Preview, the interface for customizing Input
Input specimen

Input, designed by David Jonathan Ross, is available from Font Bureau.
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