Per a few requests, I added a small feature to the font combinator:
First, the content on the first page is editable – but a lot of people miss that fact. Now, on hover, there is a dashed outline that I hope brings more attention to that.
Now, when you click on a piece of content that is editable, the font controls switch to the relevant options. It makes more sense when you play with it.
Check it out – http://www.google.com/webfonts/v2!
Google Fonts offically (soft) launched the new version of their Google Fonts directory late last week. It’s a huge improvement in every way imaginable. They did some really great work on it. I was privileged to be part of the user research process, and I can tell you a LOT of very hard work went into getting this thing right.
One of the stated goals for version 2 is that they will have 1000+ web fonts to choose from in one year’s time. This new design will definitely handle that volume of web fonts better than the original version.
There are also many more tools that let you look at how your fonts will be used. The “Test Drive” feature is particularly nice.
I think one of the smartest new additions is the data impact indicator that is shown on the last page of the process. It’s great to know how much load you are really adding.
So, go take it for a spin, and get using those web fonts!
I’ve been wondering lately why I’ve taken such an interest in Google Web Fonts. After all, why focus on that service as opposed to any of the other web font providers out there?
I’ve come up with a few reasons:
The price– I’m not going to lie – the fact that it’s free is pretty compelling. I can understand Googles motivation – the less images on the web are contained within I mages, the better for them. But because of the free nature of the service, I feel like I can play around with it and experiment. The for-pay services are great when you have a finished design in hand, and you know what you need.
Google’s CDN – I have a lot of faith in googles servers – but I also truthfully have yet to hear of people having issues with any of the big name font providers either.
You can download the fonts themselves – i’m not sure if the for-pay services allow that. it definitely helps during the design stage.
The open source nature of a lot of these fonts – which yes, means that quality will vary wildly, but there are some real winners in the directory.
This does not discount the value of the other font providers out there – just why I’m paying more attention to Google Web Fonts. What do you think? What font providers are you finding success with? Let me know!