September 2nd, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
Sometimes teaching people a new technical skill is a more difficult task than required.
Case in point, telling your boss how to install a font on their computer. Not a fun task.
Why not just shoot her a quick PNG of the font in question and call it a day? It’s easy to do with Suitcase Fusion 7. Check it out.
Want to try it yourself? It’s easy to do.
August 26th, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
Using fonts in video compositions with Adobe After Effects can be a real PITA. It’s often difficult to locate where fonts are missing, and often leads to choosing pre-rendered video rather than messing with live fonts in video.
Suitcase Fusion 7 makes it a bit easier to work with live fonts by providing a font auto-activation plug-in for Adobe After Effects. When you open a composition, the plug-in automatically locates and activates required fonts. Check it out in this video.
Ready to check it out with your copy of After Effects?
August 19th, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
Suitcase Fusion can manage your fonts without always running because of a handy little application called the Type Core. This app runs in the background all the time and ensures that fonts are activated when required by your professional design applications.
Want to learn more about the Type Core? We’ve made it easy. Sit back and watch this short video.
Want to test how Suitcase Fusion will work on your system? It’s easy with a free trial.
August 17th, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
Learn font distribution best practices so you don’t get caught in a font licensing conundrum
Think of font distribution as a process. Not only does it keep your fonts organized and efficiently distributed, it also helps you maintain the appropriate number of font licenses by helping track which fonts are authorized, purchased, shared (with appropriate team members), and reviewed.
A proper font distribution process helps in many areas:
- Time and money spent. Incorrect font usage can cause unnecessary misprints from text reflows and require reprints that waste time and money.
- Tracking issues. Without a proper font distribution process, your team has little (if any) insight into which fonts are being used. Some fonts may be underutilized which can result in purchasing more font licenses than needed. Proper tracking and reporting give you a meaningful way to make future font purchase decisions.
- Unhappy employees. Confusion and frustration reign when your design team can’t find the fonts they need when they need them. Life is easier when a process is in place that allows them to find what they are looking for.
- Legal concerns regarding font licensing. Without a controlled distribution and system of font access, unlicensed fonts can gain easy access into your organization or even worse, custom fonts could be released into the wild. All of which could potentially lead to a lawsuit.
Read on to learn font distribution basics and best practices to help alleviate these potential problems.
Five Font Distribution Best Practices
1. Decide how you want to organize your font collection
We recommend organizing your teams by workgroups. Workgroups are groups of fonts and users. Basically, you give a specific number of users access to specific fonts. Below are three common methods to choose from.
User Type: user types may vary, but we commonly hear about editorial, design, and production user types. These different groups have different needs and will use fonts for different reasons so it makes sense for some organizations to divide their font teams by user type.
Client: Every client is unique and so are the fonts they are using. For example, Times New Roman was built specifically for the Times of London. Companies want a specific brand identity and they can do this by creating and commissioning their own typeface, or selecting groups of fonts that most effectively represent their brand.
Project: Just like each client is unique, so is each project. However, since projects don’t have to be client specific, sometimes grouping by project makes more sense.
2. Set up compliance using permissions
One of the easiest ways to be compliant and avoid piracy issues is to set up user permissions. Instead of a whole department or company having access to certain fonts, only people who need rights to particular fonts have permission to use them. Permissions ensure your company is following branding guidelines and avoiding even inadvertent piracy because users can only use approved and/or purchased fonts that they have access to.
3. Choose roles
Who is going to be choosing, purchasing, and uploading fonts into your system? Is it your Lead Graphic Designer? Is it someone in your IT department? Having a key person who is in charge of this process helps you avoid a guessing game that can lead to problems.
4. Keep record of your font licenses and track usage
When you’re managing the distribution of your fonts, you can gain a level of control over font compliance. You have direct access into who has access to your fonts, and how many users are activating them. This helps ensure you have the right number of licenses for your actual usage and lets you make improved future font purchasing decisions – remember when we discussed saving time and money? This is your ticket to doing just that. Keeping track of all this can be a huge challenge, but font management software can help you.
5. Pick the right enterprise font management software:
Having reliable, robust font management software to save time, money, and maintain license compliance is key to making font distribution possible and successful. Look for a solution that has a dashboard allowing you to easily compare fonts side by side. Check for the ability to search for a font by specific type and set up user permissions by workgroups. Make sure reports are available so you are able to see if more font licenses need to be purchased or scaled back for future use.
What does your font distribution process look like? Let us know in the comments section.
August 12th, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
Have a ton of fonts? Of course you do. For those of us who love fonts, collecting them is often a hobby that we are unable to give up (nor should we).
Suitcase Fusion makes it easy to locate fonts in your collection. Check it out in this video.
It’s easy to load your font collection into Suitcase Fusion. Try it yourself for free.
August 11th, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
July and August have been a busy couple of months here at Extensis. After the Suitcase Fusion 7 launch and subsequent 18.1 update (which focused on Adobe and Quark update compatibility) the product and engineering teams have been hard at work to ensure the nuts and bolts of managing fonts across your critical applications are on-point.
Today, we’re excited to launch the latest release of Suitcase Fusion, which concentrates on improving plug-in stability by eliminating erroneous missing font dialogs and richer Google Font support. See the product release notes for complete details.
To install this update just download and run the new installer.
Of course if you haven’t upgraded yet, Suitcase Fusion 7 is now available for purchase and includes cloud-based font syncing, Adobe After Effects plug-ins and enough font management wizardry to make your head spin (or magically more productive) Check it out.
August 5th, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
Want to check out how a font or some text will work with a document or design, but don’t want to actually add it to a document? Use a floating preview in Suitcase Fusion 7 to see how the font will work. Check it out.
Want to play with all of the features in Suitcase Fusion 7? It’s easy, and free to do so with a free trial.
July 29th, 2016 by Jim Kidwell
Most designers build vast collections of fonts over their careers. The average collection surpasses 4,000 fonts, and exploring a library of that size one font at a time can take a while.
To make it easier to locate fonts, we’ve included a feature that allows you to locate fonts based on their similarity to others in your collection. Learn how to use this feature in this short video.
Pretty cool, eh?
Ready to try QuickMatch yourself?
Want to learn how to use our flagship font manager Suitcase Fusion 7? We’ve made it easy by creating a large number of videos that go through all of the basics of setup and use.
This video covers adding fonts to Suitcase Fusion. Get started with your font journey here.
Want to try it yourself? It’s easy to do.
Fonts are seemingly innocuous pieces of software, but when treated improperly can cause big problems for you, your team, and even your entire company.
The problems that fonts can cause come in many forms, from the mere embarrassment of a client, all the way up to multi-million dollar lawsuits.
These are a few ways font problems can be created:
- Casual font copying & trading
- Misuse of open source fonts
- Under-licensing of fonts
- Distribution of fonts to outside groups
- No formal internal training procedures
- Misunderstanding of copyright laws
- Inadvertent or overt font piracy
Font compliance issues like these have caught many teams off guard, and it hasn’t been limited to one type of organization. Presidential candidates, toy manufacturers, broadcasters, publishers and creative agencies have all had serious issues with font compliance.
To help you assess your risk, we’ve put together a free tool – Font Compliance & Risk Assessment Tool.