Thursday, June 07, 2007

Browser Font Hack

Kostyantyn pointed me to the sIFR project and boy am I impressed. It's nothing short of remarkable - it's easily in the top 10 hack I've ever seen.

The goal of the project is to seamlessly integrate any custom font into your web page without having to resort to the usual image or flash tricks. I don't have an easy way to test this out, but from their sample page it looks like it works - and works really well.

The basic idea behind the hack is to load your font of choice into the Flash plugin and then throw away the Flash movie itself. Apparently this act has the side effect of giving the browser access to the new font (this is actually my guess - I haven't dug into the guts of the project yet). Once you have this font, you can use CSS and JavaScript to apply it to your text, and viola, you have a beautifully laid out page with a minimum of effort.

They've done an excellent job of having you specify only a small amount of actual code in your page to make this work, even though there's lots going on behind the scenes.

I'll have to update my dynamic text to image hack to use their library. As it stands, my solution seems down right crude.

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