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Mac OS® X Snow Leopard™ Bible by Mark Hattersley, Galen Gruman

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Chapter 22. Managing Fonts

When the Mac was first introduced in 1984, two things set it the most apart from the PCs of the day. One was the use of a mouse-driven graphical user interface. The other was the use of fonts (aka typefaces). Never before could you use typography in your documents, and the result was the desktop publishing revolution that ushered in the popularization of the media because anyone could produce good-quality publications. When the Web rose in the late 1990s, fonts were part of the basic mix of its presentation capabilities.

So the Mac has a long history of being font-oriented. Over the years, font technology has changed significantly, and the Mac OS has kept up with those changes. Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard works with five kinds of font technologies, and it provides a management tool that enables you to control which fonts are active. (Because each font takes system memory, if you have a large font collection, you may not want them all loaded in memory at once.)

Exactly What Is a Font?

Technically, what computer users call a font is what typographers call a typeface: a set of characters available in one or more related stylistic variations. For example, the font/typeface Arial has the styles Arial Regular, Arial Italic, Arial Bold, Arial Bold Italic, ...

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