What are some awesome free fonts?
February 22, 2004 10:53 PM   Subscribe

I'd like a free font (note: has to be awesome).

I'm getting very, very tired of Times New Roman, and Book Antiqua isn't really doing it for me. I was wondering if anybody had a favorite free alternative font? It would have to be a nice, pleasant-looking serif font for Windows that wasn't too dissimilar to the above, at least not so different that my professors will just tell me to change it back.

I've done some searching on the internet and the askmetafilter archives (which have a surprising number of font questions), but haven't found anything. Mostly, the internet is full of very nice fonts that cost $20, or bogus font-porn sites with popup ads. There must be something out there, though -- I just want to give my documents a little different feel. Links appreciated!
posted by Hildago to Grab Bag (17 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I use Verdana for everything I do. It comes with Windows.
posted by tomorama at 11:16 PM on February 22, 2004

Some free variant of palatino? I end up running off most of my research papers in palatino by default, but that's in the LaTeX world.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:27 PM on February 22, 2004

Truth be told: making a font that's good for setting large amounts of legible small text is exceedingly hard - which is why decent free fonts for that purpose are so rare. A quick search brought up only PetitLatin as being at all promising.

Have you tried Georgia (probably already on your computer)?
posted by kickingtheground at 11:28 PM on February 22, 2004

"Arial kicks ass."

Okay, no, really. Windows-standard Georgia is pretty nice looking on the printed page. Palatino is availble on the ol' Linux boxen and is similarly not too ugly. There is something to be said for having "your font" available globally (even if it is somewhat Cheesy).
posted by Ogre Lawless at 11:32 PM on February 22, 2004

If you keep running into commercial fonts that you like, but are only interested in free ones, check out Lookalike Fonts for potential substitutions. Some (if not many) of the suggested replacement fonts may be freely accessible on the Web.

In addition, here is a site with thousands of (supposedly) free fonts, though they don't offer thumbnails. You could simply download a batch and then view them without first installing them using The Font Thing.

Unfortunately, none of the ones I was going to suggest (Calisto MT from Monotype, Minion from Adobe) seem to have free variants. Good luck.
posted by Danelope at 11:36 PM on February 22, 2004

I like garamond which isn't free but came with my computer (either with win2k or office); you might check to see if you have it. (also googling can probably turn up a copy or at least a lookalike).
posted by juv3nal at 12:00 AM on February 23, 2004

daFont might have something... It's generally where I go for free fonts.
posted by Katemonkey at 12:06 AM on February 23, 2004

Katemonkey, daFont is daBomb. thanks.
posted by theora55 at 5:20 AM on February 23, 2004

Some people made type just for you. Lido.
posted by raaka at 6:02 AM on February 23, 2004

You can find tons of crazy fonts here.
posted by MsVader at 6:09 AM on February 23, 2004

palatino also comes on macs.
posted by rhyax at 6:26 AM on February 23, 2004

I'm a big fan of garamond which, as juv3nal pointed out, you may already have.
posted by jpoulos at 7:02 AM on February 23, 2004

Georgia, Verdana, and Trebuchet are all fine typefaces, but are designed for screen use, not paper use. At high resolution and normal sizes, there are better faces available.

One of my favourites is Korrina.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:40 AM on February 23, 2004

Thanks guys.
posted by Hildago at 10:00 AM on February 23, 2004

I'm late! I'm late! But check this out. S'cool.
posted by taz at 4:05 PM on February 23, 2004

Taz, you are right, that is cool.
posted by Hildago at 6:45 PM on February 23, 2004

For an alternate sans-serif font, I've always liked Bookman old style, but it's not to everyone's taste.
posted by BigCalm at 6:12 AM on February 24, 2004

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