Thought Chasm these posts, while infrequent and poorly thought out, are also not all that complex, structurally.

Is Apple’s San Francisco the Future of Typography on OS X?

Spoiler: not likely.

[UPDATE: As of the OS X announcement, it looks like I’m way wrong here. That’s not new, but the skepticism below is still there. We’ll see how iOS and OS X look with the change.]

[UPDATE: They totally did, it’s a variant with a lot of nice qualities, and it’s totally fine.]

I think this is an amazing critique of a typeface, in that it’s completely broken.

For those with lives, San Francisco is a new typeface from Apple for their watch. It’s focused on legibility in small sizes, which means little differentiation in strokes and more space between letters so words aren’t muddy.

This is meant to be a disparaging bit, calling out points of weakness:

San Francisco has a number of issues that you will also find in Helvetica and DIN, the difference of course is that neither Helvetica nor DIN were designed for the screen. San Francisco does have a certain visual rhythm that appeals, but there is a conspicuous awareness of a pixel grid. The meeting points of the strokes are not acute enough, the letters don’t lead into each other, and there is simply too little distinction between letters.

All of those things are basically the entire point. If Apple decides to bring San Francisco to OS X as a system font (and they won’t), it will be a wrong choice. But, they made it for a watch and people will use it out of context (co–Comic Sans–ugh). One guy put it in the menu to see how it would look, so you can’t argue the choice has been made (even with the weak-sauce “?” pandering headline to try and cover your bases).

To make things even more humorous, Mr Moss holds up Roboto as a “good typeface” from Google. It’s not, unless Arial gives you warm feelings.

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Posted in haha, quick thoughts, wtf??