Type Network


Families /

Families primer

Traditional family/style choosing flowchart
The traditional process of choosing a family and then selecting styles.

Presentation of typeface families on the desktop is based on family and style data in the font files presented to the operating system and then interpreted into menu selections for use. And on the web, typeface families and styles have been identified generically, or by file name, and then assigned properties and called whenever a run of text requires that family.

As long as the font format only contains one style of a family per file, each file can only contain one family, and no matter how complex a range of styles within a family, files can only refer to one family. In many cases, a family is broken up into several files representing different sets of styles, like optical sizes for display use, or files of a family can be divided among different widths of the whole family.