Cantarell? (Was: Re: Planned GNOME Shell UI changes (was Re: String and UI Change Announcement))

Given recent discussions regarding the use of this list, I'm unsure
whether I should be responding to this question here. That said, I do
want to ensure that people get answers to queries like this.

Andrew Cowie wrote:
> On Mon, 2011-01-10 at 12:33 -0500, Owen Taylor wrote:
> >  * The default font will be changing to Cantarell 
> Cantarell?
> If Cantarell is this, which says
>         As my very first typeface design... designed for on-screen
>         reading; in particular, reading web pages on an HTC Dream mobile
>         phone ...  font file currently contains 391 glyphs
> then at first glance it seems an odd choice.
> DejaVu serves us well with outstanding coverage across the Unicode space
> and one of the only fonts with complimentary Serif, Sans, and Sans Mono
> families. Do we need to replace it?

It's not a question of coverage; it's about style (though we need to use
fonts that have good coverage, of course). The visual style that has
been developed for GNOME 3 is one that aspires to be subtle and refined.
Stylistically, Cantarell accords with that in a way that DejaVu does
not. Another aim for GNOME 3 is to ensure that the new desktop is
visually distinctive. Cantarell is a better choice than DejaVu here,

I'm really excited that we're using this new font for GNOME 3; it has a
really nice design and will give the new desktop an extra bit of

IRC: aday on

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