Responsive Typography
Using Type Well on the Web
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: September 2014
Pages: 110

Responsive web design helps your site maintain its design integrity on a variety of screen sizes, but how does it affect your typography? With this practical book, graphic designers, web designers, and front-end developers alike will learn the nuts and bolts of implementing web fonts well, especially how to get the best appearance from type without sacrificing performance on any device.

After examining typography fundamentals and the evolution of type on the Web, author Jason Pamental provides useful approaches, real examples, code, and advice for making your type performant, progressive, proportional, and polished—the primary ingredients of responsive typography.

  • Understand how type plays a vital role in content-first web design
  • Weigh the tradeoffs between self-hosting and using a font service to get the best performance for your site
  • Get your type on the screen fast by designing for Progressive Enhancement
  • Use a responsive relative scale to adjust proportions between typographic elements for any device or resolution
  • Polish your type with ligatures, kerning, and other techniques to create rich, textured reading experiences
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oreillyResponsive Typography
 
4.5

(based on 6 reviews)

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Pros

  • Easy to understand (6)
  • Concise (5)
  • Well-written (5)
  • Accurate (4)
  • Helpful examples (4)

Cons

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    • Novice (5)
    • Student (5)
    • Expert (3)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Developer (4), Designer (3)

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    4.0

    Type is your voice. Speak eloquently

    By Martin

    from Tiverton, Devon

    About Me Developer, Educator

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Accurate
    • Concise
    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Intermediate
      • Student

      Comments about oreilly Responsive Typography:

      Responsive Typography
      By Jason Pamental
      Publisher: O'Reilly Media
      Released: 2014
      Pages: 86

      This is a short, but valuable book that will get you started with responsive web typography. The first half contains a short history of typography: i.e. aliasing, type hinting, and the difference between a typeface and a font.

      The second half is very practical and this is where the book shines: the author covers the two available choices of self-hosting, or of using a service, and the effect on bandwidth and speed. There is also a good section on FOUT (Flash of Unstyled Text) and the problems of speed and perceived speed.

      Although the book is short it is the example files and code that make this book. These serve as a good starting point for your own css files. There are easy workarounds for orphans, good guidelines for responsive line length and line height based on Robert Bringhurst's typographic masterpiece, and a good rule of thumb for sizing ems: 'don't apply font-size to containers' (p44).

      The book is based on four tenets: performance, progression, proportion, and polish and the example code illustrates these well. I've found this whole area a tricky one to get started on and have sometimes fallen into the trap of relegating the importance of typography, but as Jason Pamental concludes:
      'Remember: type is your voice. Speak eloquently.'

      Disclosure: I'm writing this post as part of O'Reilly's blogger review program.

      Martin Rowe

       
      4.0

      Good primer

      By Safety Scribe

      from Victoria BC

      About Me Designer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Concise
      • Easy to understand

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        • Intermediate
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        Comments about oreilly Responsive Typography:

        I came at this book knowing little about responsive anything, but I am determined to learn html5 and related skills for myself. So this small but rich tome served as a great primer. I'm still reading it but one observation is the author has the talent to talk at the same level throughout rather than starting off talking to you but eventually drifting off to their own level of knowledge. This is a writing challenge I wrestle with, and which many well meaning and knowledgable if not entirely coherent creators of these types of books often fall prey to. The book is short and sweet, usually that feels like a bit of a rip off but in this instance I think the author stuck to his outline and kept it concise. Definitely filling some gaps that other books didn't quite flesh out.

         
        5.0

        Concise and passionate

        By Mel

        from San Diego, CA

        About Me Developer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

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        • Well-written

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          Comments about oreilly Responsive Typography:

          This book was exactly what I was looking for plus. The author is passionate about the topic. It provided the overview and insight that inspired the purchase of the book. I look at Typography differently after reading this book.

           
          5.0

          A must for web professionals

          By Darren Germain

          from London, UK

          About Me Designer, Developer, Maker

          Verified Reviewer

          Pros

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          • Easy to understand
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          • Well-written

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            Comments about oreilly Responsive Typography:

            Finally the technology and tools are emerging allowing the craftsmanship of typography to start appearing on the web. This book gives a solid foundation of this much-neglected aspect of web design.

            Both designers and Front-end developers will benefit from reading this book, which is concise and at times a witty introduction to responsive typography.

            There were lots of nuggets of information which I gained from this book even having formally studied typography before becoming a web designer over 10 years ago. This even included different approaches on how to deal with orphans, an aesthetic faux pas in quality print typesetting, and hopefully soon online too.

            Simple put, if you want a better quality product (both design and engineering) then this book will put you on the right path.

            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Good web typography primer

            By Harald Groven

            from Tromsø, Norway

            Verified Reviewer

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              Comments about oreilly Responsive Typography:

              Short, well written and easy introduction to how to use web fonts. Not burdened with paper typography legacy, but lot of text describing how we got to the messy state of dealing with different browser support and font rendering.

              The whole book could have been two chapters in the encyclopedic O'Reilly book "Fonts & Encodings", but the size of that book will scare away most readers who just need the practical knowledge of do and don't of eb fonts.

              (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Really great book on type

              By Mustafa

              from London

              About Me Designer, Developer, Educator, Maker

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Accurate
              • Concise
              • Easy to understand
              • Helpful examples
              • Well-written

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                • Expert
                • Intermediate
                • Novice
                • Student

                Comments about oreilly Responsive Typography:

                If you're working on the web as either a front-end developer or web design then this book is for you. A lot of tips & tricks from perfomance to dealing with FOUT. Also it has a great historical introduction for those type geeks out there.

                Would Highly recommend.

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