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Working with Fonts Online

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Finally RapscallionFor years my students have been asking what they can do to use their favorite fonts in their Web sites. Usually, these students are graphic designers who recoil in horror when they find that a user has to have that particular font installed on their computer.

There have been services to do this for years. IE has had an Active X control that allowed developers to put in fonts by converting them to .pfr or .eot files. JavaScript solutions have also been available.

However, there have always been limitations to these methods. Most don't work in all browsers. Some require the user to download more data. In all cases, it is a lot of hassle for very little impact.

The good news is that this is rapidly changing. As browsers improve, and CSS3 integration increases, it becomes increasingly easy to embed fonts into a Web page.

In an article on the Six Revisions Web site, Joshua Johnson at does an excellent job of outlining the use of the CSS3 declaration. The techniques and resources he outlines use the @font-face declarations to effectively embed fonts into nearly any modern browser or mobile device.

Check it out. The Essential Guide to @font-face

Of course, now we have to deal with that pesky font licensing issue...