It’s a font installer app. It lets you install fonts directly from a web site into an app on your computer.
What’s wrong with downloading fonts in zip files?
I don’t know, nothing. But you said you don’t have time to listen to my story, and now you’re telling me there’s nothing wrong with manually downloading a zip file each time you purchase a font, unpacking it, archiving the fonts systematically, and in a secure location, so that you can find them back “easily” when you need to suddenly reinstall all the fonts in the middle of a project, and then repeating when you’re receiving unexpected font updates out of nowhere? That you have the time and concentration for that?
Alright, Tell me about it.
After you’ve purchased the fonts from independent type foundries, you simply click on a link in their shopping cart, and open comes the Type.World app loading the new font subscription. Then you click on whatever fonts of that subscription you wanna install, and it’s done. The fonts are now ready to use in your applications.
The subscriptions sync into your Type.World user account, and you can hook up other Type.World apps on other computers as well, Mac or Windows, and hopefully in the medium term future also from Android and iOS, tho I can’t promise anything there right now. That depends on whether I can get future development funded or not.
Oh, and you can share the font subscriptions with other Type.World users. First only complete subscriptions, later also subsets, which I call collections.
When the foundries release font updates, you get notifications in the app and can easily upgrade, or revert back to older font versions when needed.
Reminds me a bit of app stores.
Almost. It’s like when app stores became a thing, how easy they suddenly made app installations compared to the drag that used to be involved?
Click & done, except for fonts, and without the selling part.
You still buy them from each foundry’s own website, and collect all the subscriptions in your Type.World user account inside the Type.World app.
And if your computer crashes and you need to reinstall everything, you just log back into the app and boom, everything’s there, and you’re only one click away from installing them back like the first time.
Awesome, I think I get it. But how are you getting funded?
At the moment I receive monthly donations through Patreon as well as funding from Google Fonts. Once it’s published, which I expect for end of March this year, 1 A.C., I’ll start charging publishers fair prices for transactions on the Type.World system, which comprises of a combination of a few different servers in the cloud that the app connects to, including each foundry’s own server.
So, essentially, Type.World is a cloud technology provider, and as such, it will charge the publishers per transaction. I’m currently asking publishers for feedback on their expected business in a survey. The feedback will help ensure both a sustainable business for Type.World as well as fair prices for the publishers.
If you’re interested in sporting Type.World for your users, you should participate in the survey.
Type.World is not something that you as a foundry need, it’s something your customers need, your users. You want to improve their experience.
Hold on, can I also use that for my custom font clients? I keep emailing them the font updates and when they’re in the middle of their project already, things can get a bit messy with the font versions sometimes, ya know..
Yeah, if you already have your server implemented anyway, you can totally push font updates to your custom font users in the agencies. Actually you can’t push, but they get notified in the app and can then update easily. The updates can’t be completely automatic because in a professional environment, designers still need to install font updates as a conscious activity in order to register that documents might look different and text reflow etc. But it’s still just one click!
You mentioned servers. So what do I need to do as a font publisher?
Yeah, so you need to implement an API Endpoint alongside your website’s shopping cart – the place that already knows which of your customers purchased which fonts. Your server spits out that information when the app asks for it. It’s just a bunch of metadata in JSON format, following a protocol that I’ve defined. It’s a lot simpler than the entire rest of your website.
And the really cool part is that turn-key shopping cart solutions like Fontdue or Lttrshop or FoundryCore could have the Type.World API built right in, so if you’re just starting out as a type designer or you wanna keep things simple with your cart development, you basically don’t need to do anything.
Separately, I’ll also provide a font hosting service at some point where you can just upload and send your fonts to custom type clients. Even design schools could use that to send fonts to their students in a controlled manner. This service will be available for rent, but I don’t know yet, how soon.
Awesome, man. And what about security?
Quite secure. You can read about all of that in detail in the developer docs.
So you’re telling me that I can install fonts directly from a type foundry’s website, receive all updates through the app, share the subscriptions with co-workers and external service providers securely, and it’s all Open Source?
Boom – take my money. What was your Patreon again?