Introducing Bito - A free (unfinished) typeface

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After being worked on, abandoned, worked on, abandoned, and worked on again many times over the last 15 or so years, I'm finally putting it out there.

Bito is a typeface I designed when I was studying in university that I never got around to finishing. Over the last few months I've put some time aside to finsh the lowercase glyphs and a few punctuation marks, and turn it into a font you can download and use for free.

The full story and download links are in the Bito Typeface page.

I have to thank Ryan, a former colleage, for encouraging me to work on and release Bito. It's been a fun project and I will continue to work on it as time permits. Next step is to finish the uppercase glyphs and missing punctuation marks. For example, the @ sign wasn't that important back then, but it sure is now.

Keen-eyed readers would have noticed that a few weeks ago I changed the logotype of Disturbances in the Wash to use Bito. I'm very happy to be using a typeface that I designed myself.

I encourage you to go read the story and download Bito. Let me know what you think.

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Week 1: Music, Typography, and Photography blogging

Here we are, the first week of 2014. I thought it'd be a good idea to start off the weekly linked post this year with a few things that might be of value not only now, but for the rest of the year.

John Carey's favourite music from last year

John posted a collection of the music he listened to and liked the most during 2013. It's a pretty good list of music. I found a few gems that I'd never heard of before. My favourite is probably Psychic by Darkside, which I'm listening to as I write this. You can listen to the first song, Golden Arrow, in this YouTube link. It's over 11 minutes and it gets better every time I listen to it. Perfect for writing.

Character of a Typeface

If you're a typography geek, like I am, and you know why the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog, then you'll enjoy this short video.

Tips on how to run a successful photo blog

David Cleland wrote a post with 8 tips for anyone thinking of creating a photography blog. It's good advice. He recommends using Wordpress and I do agree to a certain extent. It's what I use for every other site I have and what this one was hosted on originally. However, this one has been on Squarespace for years. At the time, Wordpress needed way too many plugins and between updates to Wordpress itself and the plugins, things broke too often. Fortunatley now most of the functionality you need comes built into Wordpress, so that's less of an issue.

So there it is. Three things that I'm sure I'll come back to a few times. I hope you enjoy them as well.

Week 52: Chicago (typeface), VSCO Cam presets, and Aperture tip

Apple's Chicago Typeface

Remember Chicago? The typeface used by Apple during the 80's and 90's as the main user interface font?

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If you're feeling a bit of nostalgia, there's a fairly easy way to get it onto your brand new Mac and ready to roll under Mavericks. It involves downloading a copy of Apple's System 7 from the Apple website and doing a bit of fiddling with Disk Utility. There are step by step instructions over at Stack Exchange.

New presets for VSCO Cam

VSCO Cam, my favourite photography iPhone app, released a brand new set of presets. At first, I couldn't see them. If the same happens to you, I found that just pulling down to refresh will do the trick.

VSCO Cam was also chosen as the best photo editing app over at The Sweet Setup. It's a great article.

By the way, if you get a connection error when downloading a bundle in VSCO Cam, here's how I got around it.

Quick tip to speed up Aperture

This week I updated my last Aperture library to the latest version. While doing so, I revisited the Preferences and found an option in the Previews section that I don't remember seeing before. It says "Share XML with other applications" and you can set it to Always, When quitting Aperture, or Never.

Apple Aperture preferencesthis support Article that explains it.

Basically, in Aperture 3.5 the way previews are shared has changed. Now they're always available to Apple's apps (iMovie, Safari, Mail, etc.) but for third-party apps to see them you need to share this XML. However, the article states:

If you do not use Aperture media in any third-party applications, setting XML sharing to "Never" in existing libraries is best. This eliminates the need for Aperture to write periodically to an XML file which can cause a spinning wait cursor to appear as you work, or when you quit Aperture.

So set "Share XML with other applications" to "Never" for "better performance and faster quit times".