I Love Typography

I Love Typography is Moving

to a new server
Today, I had planned to post the second part of 15 Excellent Examples of Web Typography. The first part, was such a success that it crashed my dedicated server. A combination of the Digg and Zeldman effect, took down the site within a few hours of posting the article. Apologies to those who had difficulty accessing the site.

iLT on Digg

This is how my server was made to look during the Digg-Zeldman effect.

The Digg-Zeldman Effect

To prevent this kind of thing happening again, I Love Typography is moving to a new server — one that will withstand just about anything you can throw at it, and the kitchen sink. The move is well-planned, but you never know what might go wrong (with me involved). In theory, the downtime should be around five minutes. I will also take the opportunity to upgrade to WordPress 2.3. However, I’m taking no chances, so I will post the second part on Thursday. If everything goes smoothly, you can congratulate me; if everything goes terribly wrong, you can blame Brian.

So, I thought I’d take this opportunity to seek your feedback. I’d like to know what you like or dislike about the site; should the articles be longer or shorter? Is the text a comfortable reading size? Do you have suggestions for articles? How about posting frequency? Is two posts a week enough, or perhaps a single post each week, that’s more in-depth, with the odd newsy or fontsy (new word!) article in between.

Here are some of the things I have planned for future iLT articles:

01 A closer look at an individual typeface or font; it’s distinguishing features, a little about its history and its designer, where it can be used well; other typeface it goes well with.

02 A series of articles on how to make fonts. How to get started, free software for font creation, with a guest post from a type designer;

03 Book reviews;

04 More type terminology articles like Who Shot the Serif?, The Return of the Serif, and Decline and Fall of the Ligature.

05 More typographic humour and cartoons;

06 Video Podcasts. I would love to do this, but what do you think? I’d really appreciate feedback on this one — especially if you have any ideas for specific podcast topics.

07 And lots of other incredibly interesting stuff, that I’ve yet to think of.

ilt readers are great
Thanks to everyone who shared and Dugg 15 Excellent Examples of Web Typography, and a big thank you to all you subscribers and commentators. You are all stars.

See you Thursday for 15 Excellent Examples of Web Typography — Under the Bonnet. Wish me luck and keep everything crossed for the server move!

And, if you want to ensure you don’t miss out on future articles, you can with a mere click, subscribe completely free of charge to I Love Typography.

johno
iLT


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  1. n3rdski

    Oh no downtime! What will I do without my iLT.com!
    But seriously I visit this website at least once a day to catch up on anything new or just get some inspiration. Being a graphic design student I need to cram as much knowledge about the art and profession as I can.
    I think this site needs a lot more of 1-7 :)
    But my top three things have to be the video podcast, type terminology,
    and well anything new in typography. Your “15 Excellent Examples of Web Typography” article was awesome. It made me want to do some serious work on my website. Other than that you guys are doing an awesome job with the site.

  2. I don’t have time to answer those questions quite yet (as i am at work) but I wanted to tell you I love the server image. Imagine that? a person who loves fonts has a good sense of humor. What’s the world coming to?

  3. Chris P.

    “Is the text a comfortable reading size?”

    I could deal with a skosh more leading.

  4. The Digg-Zeldman Effect. I love it. Sounds like it belongs in a classic 50’s sci-fi movie. I’m gonna have to post about this one. I have a thing for phrases that tickle me. Anyway, enough about me…

    I like two posts a week. Don’t think more is needed, though I’d read them if they came. As for a suggestion, how about some interviews? For example, I’d love to read one, or listen to one, or watch one, with the creator of one of those 15 examples of excellent web typography sites. You know, why they made the decisions they did? What inspired them? What inspires them? And blah, blah, blah, and so forth.

    Interviews with creatives are great. Heck, get a couple of them together somehow and have them shot the breeze on typography. You could be like the Jon Favreau in Dinner with Five. But maybe I’m getting a little carried away.

    Wherever you go I’ll follow. Keep up the wit and cleverness. The info is great for sure, but it’s the wit in presentation and voice that I love.

  5. Bruno

    >other typeface it goes well with.

    Would absolutely love some lessons on general usage and good combination of typefaces/fonts in various situations (web/print/etc) and what different messages they may convey.

    I love what you’re doing with this site so far. Looking forward to reading more! Good luck with the move.

  6. Have you tried the WP-Cache plugin? It may help you withstand the Digg effect.

  7. Good luck with the move! It’s so cool that a site on typography is making such an impact. You’re doing a lot very right!

  8. Rafael

    I love all the things you have planned for the future. Good luck with the new server!

  9. Lica

    By all means don’t decrease the frequency of the posts. One week just seems too long to wait.

    I’m a keen fan of showcasing work and I am very interested in your plan of action #2.

    Keep up the good work. Hope all goes well with the server upgrade!!

  10. rabid

    Hope all goes well for the server move. Not too much downtime I hope.

  11. halliday

    Wow, u already changed to WP 2.3. Any problems? I see ur Recent posts has dissapeared ;)
    Good luck with the blog m8. It rocks, and there aren’t many type sites that do that.

  12. Hi! Great blog.

    I was wondering if we could possible know which host you’re moving from/to. It’s so hard to see past the buzz-word packed marketing of web hosts aimed at designers/freelancers and hearing your personal experience (or at least finding out what you’ve moved away from) would help lots of us looking for good hosting that can handle large spikes in traffic.

    Thank you in advance!

    ADDED: Right before posting this I just noticed that you host with MediaTemple (says at the bottom of the page). Did you have a “virtual private” and move up to a fully dedicated plan? Or are you moving away from MediaTemple all together?

  13. n3rdski
    Very pleased to hear that. More of 1—7 coming up. I’m giving the video podcasts a serious thought; they wouldn’t be that frequent, but might be worth a try. Thanks for your input.

    Dustin
    If you’d seen my face during the downtime, you’d have laughed harder.

    Chris
    I’ve been debating that. I may well add just a skosh more.

    Amos
    I should post your comment as an article! Thanks for the feedback. That’s really give me a lot to think about.

    Bruno
    Thanks for your kind words. I’ve added your suggestions to my growing list.

    Alenônimo
    Yes, I have thanks, though I wasn’t using it at the time of the crash. I quickly installed it, and it did ease the pain a little. Now it’s here to stay.

    Alec
    Good to see you here again. And you were here from the start! Thanks.

    Rafael
    Thanks for the vote of confidence.

    Lica
    Noted. Point 2 is definitely on the list now, though may take a little time to get round to it.

    Rabid and Halliday
    I hope so to. Yes, WP2.3’s new database structure has meant that that the existing plugins for recent posts don’t work. I’ll have to write my own, unless anyone knows of a recent posts plugin that is compatible with WP2.3. And I’ve just noticed that my list of Biographies has also disappeared — that too relied on the old categories. Another thing to fix.

    Jeremy
    Yes, by all means. I’m moving from a dedicated MT server (dv Rage) to a Grid Server, simply because the Grid Server technology is better at dealing with spikes in traffic. Besides the crash owing to the Digg-Zeldman effect, I’ve been very happy with MT. Support is slower than I’d like, but when it comes to the crunch they’ll go out of there way to help; ultimately that’s why I’m sticking with them. I will keep my Dedicated server, for other sites, though.

    I’ll reserve judgement on the Grid Server until it’s up-and-running. Let me know if you need anything else. Thanks for visiting.

  14. Apologies to those who recently had problems trying to comment. Should be fixed now.

  15. The move to the new server has been completed. A few minor things to sort out ( I say minor, else I’d cry about it).

  16. Glad the comment was fixed. I was already wondering whether my browser/computer got crazy.
    John, I really like the idea of video podcasting. Would love to read more of Type Terminology in your story-telling way. Would be great to get more suggestions on Type combinations.
    And yes, keep up the great work - twice a week posting is working well. We don’t want you to get burned out from posting too frequently. I would hate to see the quality of your posts suffer from that.

    Oh, and I’d lllllove to get that kids laptop for my daughter. She’s got one, but not as cute as this, and it’s not set up to access internet like yours ;-)

  17. Keep up the great work Johno.

    The creating a font article would be great. I get a lot of questions asking about how to start from beginning typographer friends of mine. I could just throw them the link to the post and say, “go at it!”

  18. Persia

    I love this site and say you should follow your muse— I find a writer’s passion for the subject makes a big difference, and if you’re posting out of obligations to what you think we want, you won’t be as engaged.

    Not so hot on video podcasting as streaming is blocked at work!

  19. Congrats on your success John. Moving servers and stuff like that always makes me nervous so good luck with that.

    As far as what I like and don’t like about the site, there are two comments I’d make.

    a) IMO, the I Love Typography gigantic logo on top ought to be clickable and return a user to the homepage. Thats a simple but often overlooked common internet usability issue IMO.

    b) My other preference would be to have a short summary of an article on the homepage instead of the full article. It makes scanning content easier IMO. Just a preference of mine: I know that others view the issue differently.

    But the overall content and community and design is wonderful and thats what really keeps people returning. What I mentioned were just a few personal preferences.

  20. Think your theme is not widget ready then, otherwise you could just just the “Recent Posts” widget that comes as a default with 2.3 (i just upgraded as well). Maybe Brian can look into that (there are ways and tut’s about to widgetize a widget-less theme), you sidebar looks a bit messy to me anyways (all the different font-sizes and oh noes! - even a tagcloud)— but you already know that and that’s just me.

    Keep it up John :)

  21. not sure if this is the most appopos post for me to jump in, but i just had to say ‘i love this blog!’.

    i’ll make sure and comment once the server move is complete, not that it’ll make a difference that i got in ‘back in the day’ before you got all big headed and needed to move to a new server.

  22. Wow! Not suprised about the Digg, but having Zeldman mention you :D Very nice!

    For the future:
    I think perhaps I would like to see some shorter posts. I know how it is to have so much to say on a subject that you write 5 pages, but intersperse it with some shorter ones? Everything you say is very interesting, but I rarely have 15-20 minute blocks of time to read something so long.

    I think 2 posts/week is comfortable. It’s not overwhelming and you leave us wanting more and looking forward to the next one, but it’s not so far away that we lose interest. I also like the fontsy posts, so keep those coming!

    Oooooo! I can’t wait for your articles on creating typefaces! That sounds fascinating!

    I think podcast videos are a great idea! I’m thinking of it as a video capture of the screen and you talking at the same time (instead of the camera being pointed at you). This would work perfectly for a short, but in depth dissection of a typeface. Tell us what makes Baskerville Baskerville, show us good examples of it in use (just still photos or something) and show us the tell tale characteristics of the face. What do you think? I know you could do it!

    Erm, PS:
    … did I miss the addition of a new author? Pardon and please don’t think me rude, but who is Brian, John?

  23. Angela

    I would like:

    - More articles about individual typefaces
    - Less meta posts (like this one) asking for advice, that I don’t read anyways :P

  24. I’m glad the move went well! Things seem to be working fine.

    As for the site, I’m open to just about all of your ideas. Though 02 and 06 interest me in particular — I’d love to know how to create my own type, and video podcasts can certainly add a nice interactive touch.

  25. I am no big type connoisseur but I just like looking at things that look good. I also like reading things that seem interesting, and follow people who make ordinarily dry subjects fun. So.. that’s why I read. This is a really good looking blog, you make the topics seem fun, and I learn something from most of the posts. I can’t ask for more than that, so I’ll stay a subscriber :)

    I guess what I’m saying is that even if people demand more of X or less of Y, you shouldn’t necessarily do it if it doesn’t keep you happy about working on the site. People’s wants wobble all over the place, whereas your enthusiasm for the site is the main thing.. so keep it fun for you!

  26. “…but I just like looking at things that look good…”

    Exactly the same here. I actually know zero about typography, i can say what a serif is and what kerning means, but i think that’s it. But i love the art of typography, just like i love the art of illustration, the art of photography and the art of filmmaking. This site deals with my love of typography just right.
    I always wonder why some people are “into aesthetics”, and to some it means absolutly nothing. Why is that so? Why are some people aware of the golden ratio and use it unconciously or conciously, and some don’t?

  27. Kari Pätilä

    What I’d like to see, is someone actually setting the type for an entire webpage. I did some experiments involving ligatures and kerning and it didn’t feel entirely unlike typesetting by hand.

    Comparing a page with, say, regular and “improved” Georgia, would seem to me an experiment worth conducting.

    Not to suggest that I’m too lazy to try it out myself or anything of that sort.

  28. about the stuff you’ve planed for iLT, all of them sound awesome.

    post frequency, 3 posts per week would be okay, 1 cartoon, 1 in-depth and other of moderate size with yours great sense of humor.

    cheers and best of luck! :D

  29. NCJ

    I am a graphic designer turned web design/developer

    I enjoyed your recent article on 15 Excellent Examples of Web Typography, however, I would love to see more articles on web typography including articles on how to get away from using the standard PC system fonts.

  30. Phil

    Great site – I love what you’re doing here!
    Regarding potential future articles or topics, I would love to see something along the lines of “a typeface a week,” where one font is dissected every week.

    Topics for discussion might be the typeface’s history, influences, design notes, identification tips (key features)…

    I also note that you recommend books. Perhaps a book review?

    Thanks for an entertaining and informative site!

    Phil

  31. Wow, I JUST posted about that trick of adding a   to the end of paragraphs to avoid widows. But this plugin is friggin’ brilliant! It does that and way more.

  32. i loved it.. :)
    thanks for sharing..

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