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New Eco-Friendly Font Developed

December 22, 2008

A new font that cuts ink usage by about 15 percent has been developed by a Dutch company looking for ways to reduce the environmental costs of printing.

The “Ecofont” has little holes in the letters.

The Utrecht-based marketing and communications company that designed the font, Spranq, struck on a Swiss-cheese design after failures with earlier experiments using thin letters and partial letters.

“It turns out that its necessary to preserve the size and outline of letters to keep them readable,” company co-founder Gerjon Zomer says.

He says it could be an adequate font for personal use or for internal use at a company, but that it is not a beautiful font.

The font is offered for free from Spranq’s Web site.  Zomer says his site saw a spike in traffic last week as word of the Ecofont began to spread.  A lot of the International traffic came from the U.S.

He said it was gratifying because “when you put something online you never know what to expect.”

The company is inviting developers to improve the Ecofont further under a free, open-source model, and Zomer says Arabic and Hebrew versions are already under development.

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