Rotis Rounded?

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Darrin Scott Hunter's picture
Joined: 24 Mar 2006 - 12:57am
Rotis Rounded?
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What do you think about Rotis Rounded?! I just noticed this subtle change in this logotype here in Cincinnati this past week....of course, they're making connections between the custom rounded stroke endings and the rounded feet and hands in the mark....

Juergen Weltin's picture
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Joined: 13 Jan 2006 - 6:31am
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OUTCH!

j's picture
j
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Joined: 30 Jul 2004 - 1:49pm
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ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Tiffany Wardle's picture
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Joined: 13 Jul 2001 - 11:00am
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I don't think I mind rounding the corner's as much as the companion typeface is just clashing with it.

Andreas Stötzner's picture
Joined: 12 Mar 2007 - 10:21am
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No tears please.

Whatever you do with Rotis, you simply *can’t* make it more poor than it is already.

Ben Mitchell's picture
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Joined: 12 Aug 2007 - 4:05pm
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Agree with Tiffany; that companion font has a horrible g.
Funny name: Children's what?

whoneedselectricity's picture
Joined: 9 May 2009 - 8:20pm
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Why didn't they just use a rounded font to begin with?

Thomas Binder's picture
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Joined: 13 Jan 2006 - 9:04am
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>Whatever you do with Rotis, you simply *can’t* make it more poor than it is already.
Word.

j's picture
j
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Joined: 30 Jul 2004 - 1:49pm
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No tears please. Whatever you do with Rotis, you simply *can’t* make it more poor than it is already.

That's my normal Rotis reaction.

Kermit R's picture
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Joined: 14 May 2009 - 2:14pm
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"they’re making connections between the custom rounded stroke endings and the rounded feet and hands in the mark"

Then the ends of the letters would be the severed limbs of children...

Nina Stössinger's picture
Joined: 19 Jun 2006 - 3:01pm
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Directing blanket hate at Rotis is so easy… and so often misguided. But yeah, seeing it forced into this half-rounded kids' font costume is rather painful.

Andreas Stötzner's picture
Joined: 12 Mar 2007 - 10:21am
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Directing blanket hate at Rotis …

I wouldn’t talk about hate here. Its more something like – Bääähhhhhhrlckxx.
And yes, Aicher maked it very easy to feel so ;-)
(Wished other things in life would be that easy)

For the half-rounded alteration: this is exactly the spirit and approach Otl Aicher himself advocated. He did a Rotis Semi-Sans and a Rotis Semi-Serif which are Bastards even worse than our Cincinnati child.

Nina Stössinger's picture
Joined: 19 Jun 2006 - 3:01pm
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"Bääähhhhhhrlckxx"
:-)
I don't think it's pretty, either. That "e" looks like it just ate something that went bad a week ago. But: It reads amazingly well when properly typeset – which seems very hard to do, as the optimal effect most often isn't achieved. I've seen it done well once (by Aicher himself), which sure convinced me that it has its merits, even though it's so often badly used.

"Rotis Semi-Sans and a Rotis Semi-Serif which are Bastards"
Shouldn't it be time to think out of the boxes classically delimited by classification?
I suspect that especially semiserifs are massively underrated, and that there is a lot of uncharted territory for successful text fonts between the classic serif and sans genres. Essentially declaring that territory a "no man's land" is convenient, but not very fruitful.

Andreas Stötzner's picture
Joined: 12 Mar 2007 - 10:21am
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… it has its merits

Yes it has. I respect the designers courage to explore something. But not every interesting outcome of an exploration is equally good as a typeface.

… think out of the boxes classically delimited by classification

I didn’t think along the lines of classification but rather about *the nature* of script. Aicher was obviously uncomfortable with the *traditional* opposition between Sans and Serif. It was HE who reasoned along the limits of classification and thought it would have merits to just violate these limits. Now, what did he embark on? He did NOT go back to the roots of both to see what new paths can possibly be found from THAT point. Instead he took his knife and cut one ear off from the two – very well. The frankensteinish result, if one likes to put it so, is something new, ok. But is it something worthy?

“no man’s land” – Aicher’s land ;-)

Nina Stössinger's picture
Joined: 19 Jun 2006 - 3:01pm
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"But not every interesting outcome of an exploration is equally good as a typeface"
Like I said before, I personally can't get excited about the way Rotis looks – but I think it works (or at least can work) extremely well. Actually, the style I had this "epiphany" with was the Semi Sans, which I find the most hideous of the bunch, visually speaking. But the fact that it works makes me forgive it for being so ugly, and in my book, makes it a successful text face.

"He did NOT go back to the roots of both to see what new paths can possibly be found from THAT point. Instead he took his knife and cut one ear off"
What makes you say that? Does he discuss his design process somewhere? (I admit I haven't finished reading "typographie" yet.)
And just for the record, of course he didn't just chop off the serifs and that was that; I think the way he rebalanced the shapes in each style is pretty successful:

But I'm curious, are there any fonts that you think actually do that: Go back to the "roots" and find new paths from there, off the beaten tracks of the "classic" genres? I'd be curious to learn what kind of results you think such an approach might yield – results relevant for today no less.

BTW, I wonder if historicism (in the sense of basing one's designs on historical precedent and the way things developed to where they are today – your "roots") must really be the only permissible way to go about finding shapes that work. What's so despicable about "remixing" existent shapes? About cutting off ears? Are type designers that indebted to type history – more so than to the reader, who just wants/needs type that works?

Andreas Stötzner's picture
Joined: 12 Mar 2007 - 10:21am
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… if historicism […] must really be the only permissible way …

Of course not. Referring to roots is not historicism but radicalism (“radix” ;-).
There are fonts which sometimes get referred to as “incised”. I think this is a far more interesting direction for the option “serif/sans”.

I don’t want to be dogmatic on this, just wanted to express that Aicher’s thinking is too mechanistic for my taste, not only in terms of Rotis.
But that’s another thread …

Nina Stössinger's picture
Joined: 19 Jun 2006 - 3:01pm
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"just wanted to express that Aicher’s thinking is too mechanistic for my taste, not only in terms of Rotis.
But that’s another thread …"

Oh, this has been another thread for quite a while. :-)
(Did I mention recently that threads that run off on a tangent are some of the most excitingly living things on Typophile? – I expect people to try and shut me up if they disagree.)

BTW, thanks for the "incised" keyword.

Ben Mitchell's picture
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Joined: 12 Aug 2007 - 4:05pm
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Agreed, don't shut up ;)