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Adobe Edge Web Fonts (adobe.com)
308 points by ujeezy on Sept 24, 2012 | hide | past | web | favorite | 82 comments

Careful, you can't legally serve these fonts with your app, you can only link to them. Am I the only one who finds this a big deal? It means you can't control the uptime of your fonts, and it seems like it would complicate development when you're offline, too.

From a business standpoint, it makes perfect sense to turn fonts into a "service" by hyping the hosting aspect. It would be like if jQuery said you can't serve jquery.js from your web server, you can only link to it, and then they start offering paid versions of jQuery.

I realize fonts are a commercial product, but my understanding is that Google Web Fonts really are free to use in your apps, whereas this is a free service. According to the terms, it is illegal to "retransmit" the "Service Materials".

I'm not sure I understand where the fonts on that page are coming from. They don't seem to be the serious Adobe professional fonts, many of which are available from font-as-a-service providers at a cost. Rather, they seem to be a lot of familiar things people are already using via Google Web Fonts and other free sources: Arvo, PT Sans, League Gothic, etc. Some (all?) of these are available under quite open licences, so I'm not sure what right Adobe would have to restrict those anyway.

Chunk is a serious font, we just bought 30 licenses for a variant of it (chunk five) a few months ago.



A bit curious: 30 variants of Chnuk 5 are not Chunk 5. Where did you buy it from?


The website itself has hardly any frills.

Adobe really needs to drop the corporate marketer talk.

"Adobe Edge Tools & Services: New tools and services for a beautiful, modern web."

"Edge Web Fonts is conveniently built into Edge Code today and will be available in Edge Reflow and other Edge Tools & Services soon."

I'm reading all this and I still have no idea what Edge is or why I should care.

A much more informative link for the HN audience is this: http://www.edgefonts.com/

They want to appeal to bosses who will tell the developers to use it..

Yes. Managers, not developers, are Adobe's customers.

It is rather infuriating if you are stuck under that relationship.

I'm not a boss but I showed my developer could workers and he couldn't figure it out.


should have read "co-worker" thanks auto correct.

No problem, I would have suggested a helpful correction but I was completely lost. On that note, I just though how funny it would be if autocorrect just had a WTF? when it was completely lost.

Wow that's more zealous auto-correct than Digg fixed-that-for-you kids.

From that page:

-- Edge Web Fonts gives you access to a vast web font library made possible by contributions from Adobe, Google, and designers around the world. The fonts are served by Typekit, so you can be sure of high performance and stability. Plus, it’s free! --

>I'm reading all this and I still have no idea what Edge is or why I should care.

Neither do the people who wrote it, I can assure you :)

Neat, but I don't understand why Adobe would do this. I already use Adobe Typekit, and $50/year gives me access to a huge library of fonts at an unlimited number of websites. For my purposes, I'm tempted to stop paying even that totally reasonable, meager amount and just use this free offering instead.

After following most of the links on the page, I can't find any mention of limits on pageviews or traffic. On the surface of it, that makes their free offering a little bit better than their paid offering.

I feel that this is effectively:

Adobe® Edge Web Fonts: Paid for graciously by the users of Typekit.

    <script src="http://use.edgefonts.net/league-gothic.js"></script>
I wonder why they pushed negotiation to the client side instead of doing like google. you need to send this http://use.edgefonts.net/league-gothic.js to your user instead of this http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Source+Code+Pro in order to serve your font, and it won't work with js disabled.

TypeKit has a lot of countermeasures to ensure that the fonts are used according to the license, and not by anyone who isn't allowed to or through proxy's or something. I don't know the details but had a run-in with this in the past, resolved soon by customer support. I'm guessing Adobe didn't care for creating a second serving system to serve up these fonts, or the licenses are still restrictive that it requires some added logic.

This is similar to how TypeKit serve their fonts. They wrote a blog post explaining their reasoning: http://blog.typekit.com/2011/08/11/better-web-font-loading-w...

That post claims that fonts don't have a fallback mechanism for when a font fails to load, but fonts have had fallbacks for as long as we've had CSS:

    font-family: "Obscure Font", "Common Font", sans-serif;

I don't know the current state of things, but a failed font download used to result in blank/transparent text in some browsers, ignoring the fallback font.

From the linked page:

"The fonts are served by Typekit, so you can be sure of high performance and stability."

I abandoned Google fonts because of the annoying latency / flash on refresh. The Adobe fonts are smooth on my dev machine. That might be worth the difference under the hood.

Sad that they don't support international characters (or at least not the full character set of the language we use here).

Fonts provided by Google are better in character range coverage. Anyway, thanks Adobe.

I thought so as well first time, but it seems they do, see 'subset' section here: http://www.edgefonts.com/#url-specification

Also: http://jsfiddle.net/6zUQu/1/

It seems that only the example on their site includes 'default' character set. Note that, though, sadly not all fonts have different than latin-1, or partial latin-1-ext.

"In addition, Adobe will be applying its considerable font expertise to improving and optimizing a number of the open source fonts that are available in both Google Web Fonts and Edge Web Fonts. The teams from Typekit, Adobe Type, and Google Web Fonts are working to identify which fonts will benefit the most from our attention, and how we can best approach improving their rendering and performance."

Helping to improve fonts that are not just freely available, but freely available on services other than your own? It's almost like I'm starting to feel goodwill towards Adobe. It's rather strange.

Back in the day they did fight Fontshop in court to make it possible to embed fonts (in PDF-files). Today there are still fontdesigners that charge an extra fee if you use theirfonts in things like Flash. Or just forbid it. Yeah, I'm looking atyou HouseIndustries...

I find Adobe remarkably inconsistent. The people behind their most famous product line, Creative Suite, seem to consistently produce poor quality software full of awkward limitations and oversights backed by terrible customer support, whose only redeeming feature is that since they basically killed off or bought all of the serious competition years ago everyone else's software is actually worse.

On the other hand, Adobe's typography people seem to be consistently good at producing high quality work, selling it at reasonable prices, and offering it on reasonable terms. Consequently, probably 90% of the money I've spent on serious fonts over the years has gone to Adobe, because they blow away the the-90s-called-they-want-their-printers-back silliness of certain other well known foundries, who either haven't noticed that we use fonts more on-screen than in print these days or who shamelessly advertise one price when the actual price to buy a useful product is presumably higher (presumably, because they never seem to tell you how much those extra permissions will actually cost).

Browse the fonts listed in the select box: http://2012.s3.amazonaws.com/edgefonts.html

That page crashes my Chrome tab. Wonder what's the practical limit for number of custom fonts.

I was thinking of making something similar. Thank you for saving me some time this morning!

I've never heard of this "Adobe Edge". What's the deal here? I can't tell if it's a free thing or what.

Adobe's closed source fork of http://brackets.io

Actually, Brackets itself started inside Adobe by a group of employees, so Edge Code is their distribution package as much as Chrome is to Chromium. I can't see it in a negative light, I think they're getting this right.

Adobe is following this "open core" approach on several of its newer offerings. For Instance adobe

That's what Edge Code is. Edge is their collection of developer-focused tool and services. Basically, they're trying to shake the stigma of Dreamweaver.

Also, because it's implied otherwise, it should be stated that Brackets is an Adobe-created/-owned project. The two are still quite tied together, as Brackets improvements are pushed into Edge Code releases.

Edge seems to be more than that. http://html.adobe.com/edge/

More like Brackets is an open-source fork of Edge, since it was started by Adobe.

I see a few overlapping fonts (or, at least, overlapping names) from Google Web Fonts. But most seem new.

Is there going to be a new competition over who has the 'cutting-edge' fonts?

Their linked blog mentions a partnership with Google regarding some of the fonts offered.


With that said and paranoia of external asset serving/hosting, does anyone know if these fonts can be self-hosted?

Also, there is an extra DNS round trip by using an external web service. And I hate seeing JavaScript crawl into my <head> tag - certainly not for a web font.

I hope so! More competition means more awesome free fonts for me. I hope they compete bad. Some web fonts render terribly across platforms. Windows still has terrible awful horrible handling of fonts so anything these companies can do to improve that in web fonts would be much appreciated.

I was wondering the same thing - Is there an advantage to using Adobe's web fonts over Google's fonts?

On my dev machine, Google's has an annoying flash / latency issue. Adobe's is smooth.

Damn........ they got a font called Lobster Two

This changes everything

Wait till you see Helvetica Neue S...


I think it comes from Google Web Fonts that one.

Am I right in thinking that they don't support Web Font Loader? [1]

Considering this is built on top of Typekit — which does support Web Font Loader — this is surprising.

[1] - https://developers.google.com/webfonts/docs/webfont_loader

If Adobe were really interested improving the web typography either Myriad Pro would be in the free set (it isn't) or they would change the default font in their creative suites to one of the free fonts (they haven't)

This is frustrating. I've spent 10 minutes on their site, checked out the links, and still can't figure out how to browse their font collection. Am I supposed to sign up with this Edge tool to do that? By contrast, see http://www.google.com/webfonts. You land there and start working.

I found that equally baffling. I threw together a page that displays the best (according to Adobe[1]) webfonts of the bunch: http://jsbin.com/itayep

[1] http://html.adobe.com/edge/webfonts/#edgeWebFonts

Am I right in thinking Adobe bought TypeKit?

You're right, but you're about a year late.


Still no VAG Rundschrift. I have seen people request it on Typekit for years. Adobe is the licensor for this font, I have no idea why they haven't listened and either start offering it as a web font or explain why they won't/can't.

If you don't mind hosting it yourself it looks like you can buy VAG Rundschrift as a downloadable web font from MyFonts.com.


Priceless! "Our mission: move the web forward and give web designers and developers the best tools and services in the world." And then: "Download a PDF version of this document (PDF, 47 KB)"

You do know that PDF is an open format, right?

Yeah, but it is in Adobe's interest to have you download a pdf that happens to use a pointless feature that only exists in the version of acrobat the came out three weeks ago and no other pdf viewer supports.

Aye, but it's not exactly moving the web forward, is it?

My point exactly.

I have a question on how web-fonts actually work.

I thought fonts basically just vector graphics. Since these are just java-script files, how are they being distributed? How do these work?


google: embed css link, the negotiation which one to download is made server-side

adobe: embed js link, the negotiation which one to download is made client-side

Ah, I see now. Thanks for clarifying.

Is there a web page to browse all these fonts? That dropdown is tedious to use.

I created one for that: http://www.yvoschaap.com/edgefonts/

Prepare for some resource hogging :)

Thank you!

The dropdown was broken for me on Windows 7/Chrome.

And I can't see any of these in IE 8 (using IE8 due to corporate lockdown).

My mistake - low system resources on the P.O.S. laptop I'm issued with.

Does this still put an ugly badge on the corner of your page?

This is trash. A repackaging of a lot of free OFL type that's already out there, but new and improved with restricted licensing, JS dependency, and relying on Adobe.

Too bad this is what hit the top slot. They also announced the release of the open source code and its monospace variant. I'm using it in elementary OS and it looks fantastic in Sublime Text and terminal.

Googling did not help, so can anyone please provide a link to the other announcement?

This is a good font, but to me it's nowhere near as good as Inconsolata-g, the best fixed-width font I've found.


It's fonts and a pageful of bitter people who cannot figure them out.

I no longer trust, nor like Adobe. And I don't think I ever will again. I genuinely want to see them fail in everything they do and I care not one jot for the men and women who work there or their families. I root for Pixelmator, I salute Apple's stance on flash and even wanted Silverlight to give Adobe a run for it's money.

There is a point to this rant. I have used Adobe products my entire working life. I loved Adobe and the products they made. But now...? I am what happens when you treat your users like shit, and everyone else like idiots.

Fortunatly for me, my inflated opinion and militant outlook is made more tenable when they keep releasing turds like this.

Sorry, but no, there was no point to that rant. I'm no Adobe fan either, but your comment adds no value; it isn't a specific criticism, just being angry. If you dislike them, just don't use their products and move on.

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