NET NEWS: A Fount of Fonts

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Science  28 Jun 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5577, pp. 2303
DOI: 10.1126/science.296.5577.2303b

Palatino, Times New Roman, Symbol—the traditional fonts are failing scientists, engineers, and doctors, according to a consortium of six publishers called the Scientific and Technical Information Exchange. The group announced on 10 June that it plans to bring typography into line with the needs of science by offering a slew of custom-built, tech-friendly fonts.

Right now, scientists and engineers must borrow their α's, Æ's, and ΔT's from multiple fonts that are not always compatible or recognizable to people working on different computers. The consortium has hired typographical experts to design a new set of fonts that will contain 8000 scientific, medical, engineering, and mathematical symbols that will work at every stage, from word processing to print and on the Web. Sponsors include the American Chemical Society, the American Institute of Physics, and Elsevier Science. When the font sets are complete next fall, you'll be able to download and use them for free.

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