Kerning, or why to hate Comic Sans

if you hate someone teach them to recognize bad kerningComic Sans, the font of derision, or so font aficionados tell us. But they usually don’t tell us why. Okay,  it’s really casual, and somewhat silly, but that doesn’t seem like a good reason to throw rocks at it. That is is used inappropriately isn’t the font’s fault. (A headstone in Comic Sans?)

Turns out that one of its design flaws, or casual characteristics, depending on your POV, is the kerning. That’s the distance between letters, and in spite of what we’re used to on computer screens, it’s not set in stone. It’s why type justified to right and left both can look really odd; the spacing between letters changes. Kerning is a major function of good typesetters and font designers. Most of us don’t alter it deliberately.

Here’s your chance: play the Kerning Game. Move the letters around until it looks good, and find out how a pro would solve the dilemma.

I found this game a while back, possibly through Moonrat’s blog, but it’s been a while: I don’t really recall. But I torture myself with it at intervals. How good an eye do I have? Good enough to hit the pro solution about 70% of the time. Once in a while I blow it completely.

You try. Dare ya.

2 responses to “Kerning, or why to hate Comic Sans

  1. You find the best stuff! I think it would be easier with smaller type. Even so, I earned 89 points on one, and reached the 60s on most. I’ve always disliked text with full justification.

  2. 100 3 times but still ended with 68 overall. 🙂

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