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#1
James Hines

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I thought this article might be of interest since as cartographers we deal with the issues of choosing fonts to display on our maps.

Saving money on printer ink through your choice of fonts
By Ben Patterson

Here's an interesting idea for users who want to squeeze every last penny out of their high-tech budget: Saving money by choosing a printer font that uses less ink than others.

It's not just theoretical savings we're talking about: The Printer.com blog says that its research found that all users -- individual printer users and small business environments -- stand to save up to $80 a year per printer based on nothing more than changing the default font they use when they print documents.

What font is the most economical? While the appropriately named Ecofont is designed to minimize ink and toner use, there's actually one font with an even more toner-sipping attitude. That font: Century Gothic, which covers the average piece of paper with ink to a level of only 3.45% total ink coverage. By comparison, Arial, the most commonly used default font, averages 4.97% coverage. A burlier font like Franklin Gothic Medium hits over 5.5% coverage.

The numbers may look small, but don't be tricked into thinking they don't matter: Those costs add up when you realize you may be pumping out 60% more toner on every page you print than you really need to.

Remember of course that ink and toner usage is only one part of the puzzle when it comes to saving money on printing costs. Using a smaller font will let you fit more text on a page, thus letting you reduce the amount you spend on paper each month. Using a duplexer to print on both sides of a sheet of paper -- or recycling printed pages so you re-print on the backs of sheets that are no longer needed -- will also let you double your paper efficiency.

Of course, the best solution to saving money on ink and paper is simply to avoid printing as much as possible. Think before you print!


"There is much beauty that we fail to see through our own eyes teeming with life forms that give us that perception of our reality.  Leaves on the trees blowing gently in the wind, or scarily, the waves pounding through high surf, or lightly on a warm summer’s day; that opportunity to sit or swim in the water on a white beach.   That comfort to shout, “The universal conscious do you hear me?  I am alive, guide me dear logos towards the path of rightnesses.”  Earned what has been kept, no longer to be absorbed into a life filled with cold damn winds and  that stubborn fog clouding  my vision with nothing but darkness."


#2
Hans van der Maarel

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Apart from the fact that I think that Ecofont is horrendously ugly, I'm not sure it would actually work well on a map, where legibility at small sizes is very important. Anybody ever give it a try?

Also, on street maps, I use an awful lot of condensed variants, which are even denser in terms of coverage.
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#3
Esther Mandeno

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Apart from the fact that I think that Ecofont is horrendously ugly, I'm not sure it would actually work well on a map, where legibility at small sizes is very important. Anybody ever give it a try?

Also, on street maps, I use an awful lot of condensed variants, which are even denser in terms of coverage.


Nope, never used Ecofont but like you said, it's a matter of keeping things readable. I often have to use 'white' on my color-drenched maps (those aren't very eco-friendly at all).
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Esther Mandeno
Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving. - Albert Einstein




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