Microsoft has introduced a change of typeface and, in a self-aggrandising open letter addressed to “each human on earth [sic] that’s ever typed textual content”, says the default font of 15 years, Calibri, is to get replaced with the newly created font Aptos. The corporate says that is “the proper font for increased decision screens” and the selection was made following “impassioned suggestions” from customers on 5 new fonts it had commissioned. 

The 5 fonts have been named Bierstadt, Grandview, Seaford, Skeena, and Tenorite. Bierstadt was chosen however has been renamed Aptos. This can be a whole guess however I reckon the font was in all probability named after Albert Bierstadt, and re-named as a result of in German it means “beer metropolis”. Aptos is taken from its creator Steve Matteson’s favorite unincorporated city in California, with the phrase coming from the indigenous language Ohlone and that means “the folks”.

As of at the moment Aptos will seem because the default font throughout Phrase, Outlook, PowerPoint and Excel for the lots of of hundreds of thousands of customers of Microsoft workplace software program the world over. Over the approaching months it’ll change into the default throughout all PCs working Microsoft software program. 

Microsoft’s submit saying the brand new font does go into the realms of the marginally mad, and I say this as somebody who’s really fascinated by fonts. It says Aptos “was crafted to embody the numerous elements of the human expertise” and was designed with “a slight humanist contact”. This can be a lot to say about what is basically a fairly nice-looking sans serif. 

“There’s at all times that little voice inside me saying, ‘You understand, you gotta attempt to sneak in just a little little bit of humanity. You possibly can’t simply use rulers and straight edges and French curves to make all these shapes mechanical.'”, stated creator Matteson. “I did that by including just a little swing to the R and the double stacked g.”

Microsoft goes on to speak about what a very good job the font does of being readable then actually cracks out the thesaurus of reward: “daring, well-defined, directive, and constrained […] articulates many alternative languages and tones […] Stem ends are clear minimize […] Refined round squares throughout the letters’ contours permit increased legibility, particularly at small sizes.”

There’s additionally an especially amusing little bit of font snobbery when Microsoft goes on to speak in regards to the little dots above sure letters: “the heads of i’s and j’s are round dots versus grotesque squares.” Take that, squares.

Mockingly sufficient Matteson drew the font (Microsoft’s time period: “ideated”) with paper and pencil, as a result of he finds engaged on computer systems too “ephemeral.” He cites the “nuances that you simply get on paper that will not happen in case you’re clicking, dragging and holding down the shift key” and for good measure provides that drawing is “a extra bodily expression of your self.”

In addition to Aptos the opposite 4 commissioned fonts will stay on in Microsoft’s Workplace suite and, similar to its predecessors Instances New Roman and Arial, Calibri will stay pre-pinned on the prime of the brand new font menu in case you’d somewhat stick than twist. “Fonts are private,” says Microsoft, rubbing your arm and providing a scorching drink, “we get that.”