Open source…fonts?

The open-source approach, born in the field of programming, is catching on in a new area: type design.

In 2003, type design company Bitstream, in conjunction with the GNOME Foundation, released a font family called Vera for open-source use. Under the license terms, anyone was permitted to make new fonts based on Vera, as long as the derivatives were given a different name.

Now, with Vera essentially dormant, an international group has picked up work on an offshoot called DejaVu. There are other Vera derivatives, such as Erav. But DejaVu has caught on widely enough for it to be the default font for Dapper Drake, the latest update to Ubuntu Linux. It may also become the default font for Red Hat’s Fedora version of Linux.

Read this article from

Plus, An Open letter to John Warnock (of Adobe Systems) requesting the release of eight to twelve core fonts as public domain.

*Explore and add what you know about “GNOME,” “GNU,” the “Free Software Foundation,” the “Vera” font family or other open-source concepts, ideas and initiatives at the Whats New Media Wiki


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