What I wrote this summer...

Honestly, not much. But summer is over and so is my erratic writing schedule.

The kids are back to school, my wife rocking kindergarten and I’m teaching again. But for some reason, when I’m really, really busy, that’s when I find time to write. I guess it’s because every minute of my day is scheduled. Or maybe it’s that being busy inspires me to write more. Whatever the reason, look for more writing here and over on In Store Columbia.

For now, feel free to check out what I managed to write this summer between day trips and summer fun.

-B


 
 

On Instagram

USC Library Annex. My senior thesis is somewhere on the right.

A photo posted by Bob Wertz (@sketchbookb) on

 

Bob Wertz writes about design, technology and pop culture at Sketchbook B. Bob is a Columbia, South Carolina-based designer, creative director, college instructor, husband and dad. He’s particularly obsessed with typography, the creative process and the tools we use to create. In his spare time, he likes to quote random science fiction movies. Follow Bob on Twitter and Instagram.

What I want in a newspaper

How do we make the printed newspaper relevant again?

As a kid, I loved the newspaper. Growing up in suburban Chicago, we had the Chicago Tribune and the Aurora Beacon News delivered to my house daily. And there was a local weekly called the Windmill News. I was a paper boy for the Aurora Beacon News and one of my original majors in college was journalism. Newspapers were a major part of my life growing up.

I'm still a news junkie, but it’s been years since I subscribed to the newspaper. As much as I love the daily newspaper, that’s not how I get the news anymore. I don’t have time to sit and read it every morning and all the breaking news I want is delivered through Twitter or the web.

I’ve been thinking lately about what I want from a modern local paper. What would make me subscribe again? In my perfect scenario, this is what I would love to see:

Fiercely local. 

I get my breaking national news from the internet. My newspaper will give me news I don’t get from Twitter. Newspapers now are half filled with wire stories and in today’s world, that doesn’t make sense. I get that news online the instant it breaks — not the next morning.

I want a newspaper filled with local stories and local perspective on national stories. 

National newspaper conglomerates are mostly interested in efficiency and streamlining operations. The emphasis on local would mean investing in local reporting and probably impact their balance sheets. And so for my modern newspaper to be fiercely local, I assume that it also needs to be fiercely locally-owned.

Once a week.  

My local paper — The State — often sets up a booth in the local grocery store trying to sell subscriptions. Their sales pitch is that you can get the entire week of papers for the same price as just the Sunday paper. People perceive value in the Sunday paper. 

I never have time to sit and read the paper. But for me, Sunday is the best option for spending a significant amount of time reading and I think that most papers will be better off with just one paper a week, delivered to your doorstep.

There are all sorts of problems with the economics of producing and delivering the paper just once a week. What are the presses doing the rest of the week? How do you hire a delivery team that only works one day a week? Sunday delivery keeps the lucrative retail insert profit alive, but will your subscriber base be large enough to entice advertisers to continue to print and place inserts.

So my modern newspaper — assuming you can work out the financial model — would be delivered to your doorstep once a week on Sunday.

Smart mix of online and print

Just because you only print a paper once a week doesn't mean you do nothing the rest of the week. My perfect paper would have a smart mix of online content to supplement the printed version. Blogs, podcasts and exclusive online content would keep you connected to the writers and editors. Relevant social media engages readers. Your reporters become trusted sources and well-known voices. With today's consumer, I think the success of a modern newspaper depends on this deep connection with the readership.

The Perfect Size. 

I miss the old broadsheet papers, but the logistics of printing a newspaper in smaller quantities and reduced runs means that the size of the newspaper needs to be a strictly business decision. I guess a tabloid size is the most logical, but I'm open to whatever size makes sense.

Comics

On Sundays after church, I used to sit with my dad and read the comics. I looked forward to that every week. How can we bring back that magic? The daily grind of comics burned out countless cartoonists. Would we still have Calvin and Hobbes if the schedule wasn't as relentless? A modern newspaper should work with cartoonists to recapture the magic. Partner with them to develop new models and formats.

Respectful online experience

Ads are part of the financial model that makes content possible.  I understand that, but for online ads, be respectful. Today's ads are obnoxious. Terrible. They slide in and pop up and create an awful experience. I am not opposed to advertising at all, but a modern newspaper needs to respect its readers and provide a first rate experience.

Well designed and high quality

Newspapers typically aren't held up as examples of great design. The breakneck daily schedule doesn't leave much time for refinement and reimagining. A modern newspaper has to take a step toward better design quality. Most newspaper websites aren't much better than their printed counterparts. Make content easy to find and search.

Modern consumers value design quality and high quality photography. A modern newspaper must meet those expectations.

Can this happen?

I'm not sure if anyone could pull this off. Current newspaper conglomerates have shown they don't have the foresight to pull off a massive shift like this. An entrepreneur would have to find funding, but good luck finding an investor that thinks starting a newspaper in 2016 is a good idea. 

But I still think there is value in a printed news vehicle, and not just because of the ads that are in the Sunday paper. I hope someone figures out a model before all of the local papers are gone.

Using an iPad again

In December, I pondered my mobile computing options. Do I move toward the iPad or MacBook for my mobile option? A couple of months after I posted that article, my wife mentioned that her iPad Air 2 wasn't working for her. We foolishly got her 16 GB of storage and she really wanted to use her iPad in her classroom for video. Plus, she really preferred the iPad Mini form factor over the iPad Air. So we bought her a new iPad Mini and I took her iPad Air 2.

I love the iPad as my mobile option.

My iPad is pretty much exclusively for writing. I won't be taking videos or storing pictures on my iPad so the 16 GB limitation isn't really a problem for how I'm using it. (That said, don't ever buy an iPad with only 16 GB of storage. It's massively limiting.)

I really like the 9.7-inch form factor. Much better for me than the Mini I had previously used. It weighs less than my laptop and I can use the same lightning charger that I use for my iPhone. (Not that I really ever need the charger on the road... The battery lasts for an insanely long time.)

But the real reason I love my iPad? Ulysses. My favorite writing app for the Mac is also on iPad and it's perfect. The syncing between my Macs, my iPhone and my iPad means that I can write or edit anywhere, on any device. It's amazing how a single great app can completely change the way I use my iPad.

I don't see going back to a Mac for my mobile device.* While this iPad will work for the foreseeable future, the new 9.7 inch iPad Pro looks like a perfect machine for me. I'm intrigued by the Apple Pencil and the keyboard cover. I don't mind typing on the screen, but I'm much faster and more accurate on a physical keyboard. 

Hopefully, Apple will continue to improve the hardware and developers will create pro caliber apps that take advantage of iOS ecosystem.


* Although, let's be realistic. I'm probably going to want one of the rumored MacBook Pros when they are finally released. 

Back to School: The History of American Modern Architecture

The south side of the University of South Carolina's campus under construction in the early 1970s.

The south side of the University of South Carolina's campus under construction in the early 1970s.

I spent the spring semester taking an class on modern American architecture, specifically looking at the buildings on the south side of the University of South Carolina's campus. That section of campus is going to be redeveloped soon and this was our chance to document what's there before it changes completely.

Taking a class again was a fun experience. I thoroughly enjoyed it, even if I was the old guy in the class. Thanks to Dr. Brandt for the thought provoking discussion. I don't think I'll look at modern buildings in the same way again.

The class produced a book that includes the histories and architectural surveys we researched over the course of the semester. I designed the final book and am hosting a PDF copy of it here on Sketchbook B. My project involved the pedestrian bridge that connects the south side of campus with main campus. Despite having spent have my life around campus, I realized just how little I knew about that side of campus. 

I'm looking forward to taking some more classes. I'm teaching in the fall semester, but look to take another class in the spring.

Finding that blogging rhythm

It's amazing how a schedule change can disrupt your rhythm. When summer started, our family's whole routine changed. My wife is a teacher so as the school year ended, she was no longer waking up at 5:15 to get ready and I'm now the first one up. The kids have camps and programs. My daughter started playing lacrosse. I attended a conference. My wife attended a conference. We've tried to squeeze some vacation days into our busy schedule. Our air conditioner died and it's 100 degrees every single day. I'm trying to exercise more. And just like that, I'm not writing.

Now don't get me wrong... I'm having a blast this summer. But it's times like this I realize how challenging it is to blog* consistently. I've had Sketchbook B since 2007 and I'm still trying to find a consistent rhythm. It makes me really appreciate people who blog daily or weekly without fail for years on end.

I'm working on some projects this summer and so posting will continue to be erratic until fall. One of those projects is figuring out where I want to go with this blog over the next few years. What types of things do I enjoy writing about and how do I want to structure things? What does my audience look like and what do I want it to look like? Do I want to have ads? How do I use social media to promote posts? How do I improve the photography on the site? 

I'm looking forward to finding that focus that I've been missing. And hopefully finally finding a new rhythm.


* I try to avoid the words "blog" and "post," but sometimes, it's the most appropriate word to use.

SbB Runabout Superwide is a Fontstruct Top Pick

My new experimental unicase typeface, SbB Runabout Superwide, was named a Fontstruct Top Pick. I'm really excited about how it's turned out. Or to be more accurate, is turning out... It's still very much a work in progress. My intent is to use Runabout as the foundation of a whole series of fonts — with a range of widths, weights and designs.

You can download SBB Runabout Superwide over at Fontstruct.

Quick Review: Pilot MR Metropolitan Retro Pop Ballpoint

Walking through Target a few weeks ago, I noticed they were selling a Pilot MR Metropolitan Retro Pop ballpoint pen. 

I'm familiar with the Pilot Metropolitan Retro Pop fountain pen and rollerball. The Metropolitan fountain pen is well regarded as a great pen for beginners. I own a green Pilot Metropolitan fine nib fountain pen and I've really enjoyed it. But I had no idea how there was a ballpoint version available through typical retail channels and I wanted to try it out.

The Metropolitan Retro Pop that I purchased from Target is sharp looking, with a dark gray metal body. The center band is a black and silver houndstooth pattern. The rest of the trim is silver. The point extends with a slight twist on the top of the pen body. If you are used to cheap plastic pens, the Metropolitan feels substantial. 
 
The pen is a 1.0 mm black ballpoint and writes smoothly on a wide variety of papers. I typically use a 0.5 mm or 0.7 mm point so the line is a little thicker than I'm used to. The pen insert is replaceable but uses a shorter Pilot Dr. Grip Center of Gravity refill that is only offered in black or blue and only in 1.0 mm. I'm not sure if other refills will fit it as well. (None of the refills I had around the house fit the pen.)

For such a cool looking pen, the packaging isn't impressive at all. It's clearly designed to blend in with the other Pilot packaging, but it doesn't really do a great job showing off the pen. I'm also a little surprised that the word "Metropolitan" doesn't appear anywhere on the retail packaging, since that's the branding that is more prominent in the fountain pen offerings.

The Metropolitan fountain pen and rollerball models come in a range of colors and patterns. According to the Pilot website, the ballpoint comes in five colors combos, but I've only seen the dark gray and houndstooth on the shelf. 

The pen is a solid and versatile addition to my collection. I enjoy writing with it and it's nice to have a quality ballpoint to supplement my fountain pens. While I like the gray and houndstooth design, I hope Pilot makes the bright colors widely available for people to discover.

If you don't think you are ready for a fountain pen, the Metropolitan ballpoint might be a great option for you. For $13, it's a solid gateway to the world of nicer pens.

Published: May 2016

I started strong in May. Got busy and then sick. I didn't write nearly as much as I wanted to this month. I'm limping into June without a lot of momentum.

One of the things that's nice about writing these monthly summaries is that I can reflect on the month and then put it behind me and start fresh for the next month with a new set of goals.

Non-blog related projects are rolling along. I'm still working on a new typeface over at Fontstruct and looking at how I'm (not) marketing my existing fonts. I finished up an identity for my sister-in-law that I'm especially proud of. And I'm working on a new side project that I plan to unveil in a couple of months.

Summer wackiness is just getting started. I'm still planning on updating regularly.

-B


War Memorial

A photo posted by Bob Wertz (@sketchbookb) on

Bob Wertz

Husband, Dad (x3), Creative Director at @UofSC, Type Designer, Teacher and Volunteer. Blogs at Sketchbook B and Wanted in Columbia.

Using my Apple Watch

I’ve seen a bunch of articles lately discussing the Apple Watch. Some folks feel the Apple Watch is a complete failure. Others argue that it’s a flawed success. But I’m going to take a slightly different take… Instead of telling you what doesn’t work, I’m going to tell you how I use my Apple Watch* every day.

Time. I know it's simple, but the Apple Watch does a great job of telling time. I forgot how much I missed wearing a watch. And I like that I can use different faces when I feel like it.

Schedule. I’m a long time Fantastical user on iPhone and I use the Fantastical complication to keep an eye on my upcoming meetings and schedule. I prefer the Fantastical watch app to the stock Apple Watch calendar app.

Weather. Apple Watch is perfect for getting a quick forecast. I've used Dark Sky on my iPhone for years and I like the Dark Sky watch complication better than the Apple weather app.

Activity Tracker. I used to wear a Fitbit, but I had syncing issues all the time. The Apple Watch tracks my steps and activity. I wish there was a better interface for viewing the data, but it syncs everything perfectly.

What’s the score of the Cubs game? I love that I can ask my watch for the score of the Cubs game. Siri quickly displays the score. Really helpful because the Cubs are awesome this year...

Apple Pay. As I’ve mentioned before, I love Apple Pay. And Apple Pay on the watch is even more effortless.

Timers and alarms. Apple Watch makes it easy to set timers for cooking and alarms for upcoming appointments.

Find my iPhone. Apple Watch lets me ping my phone and find it quickly. Helpful when I’m not sure exactly where I put it down around the house.

Remote. We love our new Apple TV. But occasionally, we can’t find the remote because it is ridiculously tiny and gets lodged between couch cushions. The Apple Watch is actually a great emergency remote for the Apple TV.

Quick response text message. I actually use the canned responses for text messages on my watch. Sometimes, all you need to answer with is “OK,” “Yes” or “No.” Or just an emoji. Apple Watch is great at that.

VIP. My notifications are mostly turned off for emails, but not from the VIPs that I’ve identified in Mail app on my phone. I get a quick buzz when someone important emails me. (I get too much email to get a notification every time anyone emails me.)

Directions. If you use Apple Maps, Apple’s implementation of directions on the watch is really nice. When I get driving directions, the next exit number or turn is on my wrist. And it buzzes when I need to make a turn. 

Sending stupid sketches to my wife. Liz also has an Apple Watch. Sometimes, sending a silly sketch is more fun than sending a text message.

Switching watch bands. It’s so easy to change out the watch band. I’ve got two and like to flip between them. I’m probably going to buy one or two more.

So is the Apple Watch worth the investment?

I feel like Apple Watch is worth the investment. Your mileage may vary. I really enjoy wearing the watch and get more than enough use out of it to justify the $300 I paid.** But people use the watch in different ways and you may come to a different conclusion.

The Apple Watch is an accessory.*** It’s not a full fledged computing platform. The screen is tiny. The interface isn’t as intuitive as it probably should be. There are plenty of first generation rough edges to iron out. 

But I find the Apple Watch fun and useful and I enjoy wearing it. For me, that’s enough.


* Apple Watch Sport, Space Gray, 42 mm.
** On sale at Best Buy.
*** I would argue that all smart watches on the market today are just accessories.

Linked: Political Polarization

I'm a big fan of "data" journalism — the kind of story that you see over on Five Thirty Eight where they dig into data and statistics to find the real story. I enjoyed this report from the Pew Research Center about the about the political polarization of the American voting public. The interactive graphs encourage exploration and enhance the story.

My original college major was journalism and I remember in orientation being told that math wasn't important for a journalism major.* In retrospect, that couldn't be further from the truth.

Typographia's Best of 2015

I’m always a fan of Typographica’s Year in Review. Each year, they assemble a panel of experts who select amazing type that debuted in the previous year. And while I’ve seen many of the designs throughout the year, I always find more than a few typefaces that I missed.

The 2015 edition continues the tradition of excellence and offers up a wide variety of designs. Stuff you don’t see highlighted elsewhere. Each selection has an accompanying essay to give context to why the piece was included. 

Among my favorites:

  • Tripper. I love a stencil font and this gem from Underware is awesome. I especially love the T and the W.
  • Hobeaux. A reimagined “Hobo!” I have no where to use this, but I love that it exists.
  • Garibaldi. Classy and elegant. A nice, large typeface family. It’s got a nice energy and I bet it looks sharp in long documents.
  • BC Mikser. What a odd monospace design and yet… I really like it.  Five weights and italics. Quirky in a good way.

If you love type, do yourself a favor and take a look at the entire selection.

Patiently waiting for Apple Pay

About 20 years ago, fast food establishments were a cash only deal. I remember when the first restaurants started taking credit and debit cards. It was a mess. They wouldn't have a pen for you to sign the receipt. The cashiers were confused. I hated carrying cash, though, and would go out of my way to find a restaurant that took cards. Sometimes, it didn't work. It took a while, but over time, the experience got better and now, almost everyone accepts debit cards. Cash only establishments are the exception, not the rule.

I feel like we are seeing a similar slow transition with Apple Pay and contactless payment in general. 

When Apple Pay works, it's magic. Effortless. Yes, sometimes cashiers are confused and occasionally, the system doesn't work correctly. But I still go out of my way to visit a store that accepts Apple Pay because the experience is that good.

I go to the Walgreens near my house more often now because they take Apple Pay. And I was excited tonight to find out the neighborhood Starbucks takes Apple Pay now, too.

My desire to use Apple Pay is only amplified by the messy chip card rollout. While I understand why we've made the switch to chip cards, I hate everything about the process.

It might be a little messy for a few more years. But hopefully, in 20 years, contactless payment will be everywhere and we'll remember how absurd debit cards were.

Until then, I’ll be waiting patiently.

Beginner's Guides for Pencils

One of the things I love about my new obsession with writing utensils is that I know virtually nothing about them. I'm learning more about pens and pencils daily.

I love my Blackwing pencils and wrote about them recently. I came across a pair of posts on CW Pencils with beginner basics for pencil users. The first post details terminology and basic background on selecting a pencil. The second article makes recommendations for the best pencil options for your need. They are extremely helpful and make me realize that I've barely scratched the surface of the pencil world.

Thankfully, pencils are much cheaper than fountain pens.

Published: April 2016

I tried for a while to write a weekly update with links to everything I had written in the previous week. I wanted a summary that I could post to Facebook and other social media channels. Some weeks, I had a bunch of links. Others, not so much. When I had a slow week, I'd feel guilty. So I've decided to start writing monthly updates instead... And this is the first.

It was a busy month. I went to Atlanta for the Atlanta Pen Show and a live recording of the Pen Addict podcast. Released a prototype typeface. I finished my first graduate class. I managed to write quite a bit this month, despite the craziness. 

And I'm still posting a weekly update over at In Store Columbia.

I've got a bunch of articles started for May and I'm hoping that I'll be able to write a little bit more this month. But as always, we'll see.

-B


8th inning

A photo posted by Bob Wertz (@sketchbookb) on

Quick thoughts on "texting in public" with Talkshow

I’ve really had fun this week with Talkshow, a new messaging service/social media network. Essentially, it’s texting, but in public. It's a mix of Twitter and texting. You are able to converse with friends and other people can see the feed, like posts and react to posts. It’s pretty intuitive and I enjoyed playing with it.*

It's iOS only. So iPhone or iPad is your only option. Talkshow isn't available for Android and you can't post from a computer. You can share your conversations with others through a web view and embed "shows" on pages.

To give you an idea of what it's like, embedded below is a sample of a conversation between my friend and former coworker James Leslie Miller.** Our conversation eventually wanders into a discussion of design software and another user, Greg, requested to join as a cohost. 

If you try out Talkshow, look me up. As always, my handle is @sketchbookb.


* I also experimented with Snapchat this week. I'm so confused.

** He'll always be "Jim" to me.

I want an electric car.

I struggle to explain why, but I want an electric car. My trusty VW Rabbit is getting up there in age and I'm thinking about a replacement. The next generation of electric cars are increasing in range and decreasing in price. With the Tesla Model 3*, Chevy Bolt, BMW i3, an updated Nissan Leaf and the rumored Apple Car, I’m thinking seriously that my next car might not have an internal combustion engine. 

But why? When I talk to people about electric cars, most of them don’t get it. At all. And I’ll be honest — I struggle to explain it. I’ve been seriously thinking about it over the last week and I'm trying to understand why I’m so intrigued by an electric transmission.

Going the distance. An electric car fits my driving habits. Newer electric cars boast a 200 mile range. Most days, I drive about 40 miles. But some days, it's almost 100 miles. Having a 200 mile range gives me more that enough juice to go anywhere I need to go without dealing with range anxiety. My wife’s SUV will work for long trips and I can use the electric car around town. I'm also close to charging stations on campus so if I need an additional charge, I can easily do that. 

Less maintenance. I hate scheduling maintenance for my car. Electric cars have no oil changes and really only need tire rotation regularly. Less ongoing maintenance is appealing, but replacing a giant battery someday will be expensive.

It's not about the environment. Most people want an electric car because it's more environmentally friendly. But in reality, that depends on how your electricity is generated. Here in South Carolina, much of our power grid is nuclear power, but a significant percentage is still coal. While I'm sure an electric car is better for the environment than its gas powered alternative, it's not a driving factor in my purchase decision. (I do think that getting America off its oil addiction is good foreign policy.)

It's not about the high cost of gas. When gas was $4/gallon, electric cars were a hot idea because they were potentially cheaper. Gas prices are relatively low and if you calculate cost of ownership today, the electric car isn’t going to be the most cost effective. So switching to an electric car isn’t about money.

I’m not interested in a hybrid. I think hybrids are cool, but they are still cars with internal combustion engines. They have all the complexity of a normal car with the added complexity of an electric car. I have lots of friends with Prius (or Priuses?), and they all love them. But my interest in an electric car isn’t because I want to use less gas. I don’t want to use any gas at all.

I’m in love with the technology. I’m completely and totally in love with technology. And an electric car is the cutting edge of technology. From the drivetrain to the internal controls, an electric car is the most advanced piece of technology on the road.**

So will my next car be electric? It's definitely possible and I think it all depends on timing. If I had to buy a new car today, it wouldn't be an electric. Too many interesting cars on the market that are a better fit for me. But if I can hold out a couple of years, I'd be surprised if I don't go electric.


* Since I haven't already put money down on a Tesla Model 3, I won't be getting one this decade.

** At least until self driving cars arrive.

Linked: Sean Adams Basic Etiquette for Designers

We've had some great speakers come to Columbia for AIGA South Carolina, but Sean Adams was one of my favorites. A talented designer, great speaker and all around good guy. He recently released a pretty awesome slide deck about etiquette for designers. I'll definitely show these to my students this fall.

Trailers x4

I love movie trailers, sometimes more than the movies themselves. Over the last month, four new trailers have caught my attention.

Rogue One. I love Star Wars and the Rogue One trailer is chocked full of Star Wars awesomeness. We'll see if the movie is as good as I hope it is, but it looks like the Star Wars I grew up with. Yavin 4. Death Star. Mon Mothma. AT-ATs. I'm excited to get more Star Wars for Christmas this year.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. As a fan of Harry Potter, I'm both excited and nervous about a new trilogy of films set in the Harry Potter universe. Much like Rogue One, the look of the trailer is perfect. It looks like a Harry Potter movie set in Prohibition-era New York. So much potential, but we'll see if it lives up to the original.

Suicide Squad. I love the DC television universe with Flash and Arrow, but I haven't been as impressed with the DC cinematic world. This trailer is obviously intended to highlight Harley Quinn, and they expect her to be the breakout character from the movie. The trailer is fun, but I'm not expecting much from the movie. I am expecting Harley Quinn Halloween costumes to be popular with the teenagers and college students this year.

Dr. Strange. I grew up a Marvel fan, but more on the X-Men side of the universe. I don't know much about Dr. Strange. The trailer does a nice job of setting up the magical corner of the MCU, with just a quick tease of the costume at the end of the trailer. Marvel has done a great job introducing lesser known properties, like Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant Man. We'll see if Dr. Strange is Marvel's next success.

New font: SbB Runabout

I started working on some sketches for a new typeface design and moved over to Fontstruct to prototype. I really like the way the prototype turned out, even if it looks virtually nothing like my sketches.

I’ve released two designs over on Fontstruct: SbB Runabout and SbB Runabout Superwide. They are free to download with a Fonstruct account.*

A couple of notes about Runabout:

  • Unicase, but mostly lowercase. Most unicase designs are primarily uppercase, but Runabout is mostly inspired by the lowercase.
  • Short ascenders and descenders. I tried to keep the design vertically compact, with very short ascenders and descenders.
  • Flexible. I’m releasing two weights: Regular and Superwide. My plan is the have a range of weights and widths.
  • Aligning the accents. I’m playing around with the idea that accents don’t need to be centered over the letter.
  • Work in progress. I’m going to continue to develop Runabout. I don’t know if I’ll release more on Fontstruct or if I move development over to Glyphs.

* You can see and download all my published Fontstruct designs on the Sketchbook B Fontstruction page.

Linked: The Oregon Trail Generation

My friend Kerry finds the best links. And I love this story he posted on Twitter about the "Oregon Trail Generation." A great article if you, like me, are stuck between Generation X and the Millennials.

Because we had one foot in the traditional ways of yore and one foot in the digital information age, we appreciate both in a way that other generations don’t.  We can quickly turn curmudgeonly in the face of teens who’ve never written a letter, but we’re glued to our smartphones just like they are.

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I became a designer just as that industry was changing and I feel like my appreciation for both the old way and the new way makes me a better designer. In the same way, I’m part of a generation that didn't have email in high school, but had it in college. That watched the internet become a thing. A generation that remembers a social life before social media, but now actively uses Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. The world completely changed in the middle of my formative years and it absolutely influences the way I look at the world. 

If you want to find more of Kerry's awesome links, subscribe to his email newsletter and get five (or more) links every Friday.