Thursday, October 23, 2014

Retro Science Fiction Typography Inspiration

Dave Addey, Senior Writer at Apple and blogger, created a blog called “Typeset in the Future”, in which he painstakingly analyzed “2001: A Space Odyssey” for every usage of typography in the film. From the title card to the user interface, to the type on the uniforms and the buttons on the consoles.

Looking at “futuristic” designs from the science-fiction of the past, it is easy to see that the visions of Sci-fi typography have changed with the technology available to those who were designing he future. Initially beginning with the type that appeared on dials and knobs, science fiction artists ran with each new technology developed, from CRTs to LCDS, from holograms to augmented reality.

Futuristic type has stuck with the angled forms initially influenced by the limiting factors of pixels, though these limitations are long past being a limiting factor.

While there have been many attempts to create simplified “future” fonts with the advent of computer technologies, as we move forward it seems that designers are more often than not using simpler, geometric sans-serif fonts.

OCR-A is “Optical character recognition”, and perhaps the font that people call to mind when they think of computer/futuristic fonts. Its angled designs were intended to be recognized by computers and humans.

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