Parametric / Generative Fonts

hrant's picture

This has been brought up before, but I'm hoping to
wrap my head around the state-of-the-art of systems
that generate fonts [semi-]computationally.

We have the LettError work, we have MetaFont*, and
we have this:


Any others?
Any first-hand experience?


blank's picture

Any others?

Frank Blokand's DTL Letter Modeler. And makeOTF can generate various filler symbols for Mac OS Roman.

Any first-hand experience

Drawing is a lot more fun.

hrant's picture

> DTL Letter Modeler.

DTL Letter Modeler: ah yes, thanks.
MakeOTF: how smart is it?

Designing "metaglyph systems" is to drawing glyphs what drawing glyphs is to lettering. I think most people who prefer drawing glyphs over lettering would prefer making systems even more (if/once it's easy and powerful enough). A good litmus test might be: do you enjoy spacing a font?


hrant's picture

Oh yeah!


nina's picture

Then there was this:
«TYPEFACE is software that translates facial dimensions into generative type design.»

miha's picture

Some more:

Publicly available programs



There are some papers about parametric/generative font design, usually written by non-designers two or three decades ago. Also, not surprisingly there are patents, and systems which I don't know where to put, such as PANOSE.

These links are about latin parametric fonts for text. There may be some systems for experimental type that I didn't include and some interesting non-latin systems, I have to check my saved links.

riccard0's picture

Another interesting Metafont project:

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

Perhaps obvious and not really a "system" but, Python in Fontlab.

Amado's picture



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