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Symbolset

Contributed by Patch Hofweber on Oct 15th, 2012. Artwork published in 2012.
symbolset6.png
Source: http://symbolset.com. © Oak Studio LLC 2012. License: All Rights Reserved.

The wave of icons as webfonts is upon us. Among the finest is Symbolset. Almost all options boast the cliché of legibility at small sizes, yet personality at large sizes, but what sets Symbolset apart is the advent of OpenType ligatures. JavaScript even translates these same features to the web.

StudiomatesOak Studios are behind the service, with Alonzo Felix (Tightrope) and Mike Fortress (Deming) growing from their Lost Type roots.

Rather than keeping to in-house icon sets, Symbolset has gone on to publish SS Symbolicons from Sensible World and most recently SS Pika from Dutch Icon, making them a legitimate webfont icon foundry.

The site itself employs Michael Abbink’s FF Kievit eloquently throughout, pairing robust weights at copy size with lighter text at larger sizes. The wordmark is in Kievit as well, with a ‘y’ based off of a rotated ‘h’.

symbolset8.png
Source: http://symbolset.com. © Oak Studio LLC 2012. License: All Rights Reserved.
symbolset5.png
Source: http://symbolset.com. © Oak Studio LLC 2012. License: All Rights Reserved.
symbolset7.png
Source: http://symbolset.com. © Oak Studio LLC 2012. License: All Rights Reserved.
symbolset9.png
Source: http://symbolset.com. © Oak Studio LLC 2012. License: All Rights Reserved.

5 Comments on “Symbolset”

  1. Oct 16th, 2012  8:12 am
    Edit

    Indeed, these guys are leading the pack of symbol webfonts. Question, though: what are they using for the letters in the fonts? Is that simply Helvetica?

  2. Rob Mientjes says:
    Oct 16th, 2012  9:09 am
    Edit

    Stephen, I believe Helvetica is the fallback. There are no glyphs in the basic alphabet positions, so those are set in the fallback font specified by the CSS.

  3. Oct 16th, 2012  11:49 am
    Edit

    The font has A-Z in upper and lower case, in what looks to be Helvetica, but fallbacks are set to Helvetica etc. as well, displaying words rather than glyphs.

  4. Oct 16th, 2012  3:52 pm
    Edit

    Thanks guys, appreciate the feedback! The fallback letters in the font are custom drawn by us, loosely based on Helvetica. We paid specific attention to minimize the amount of points in order to reduce file size as much as possible, with a slimmed down basic latin range covering only what our keywords need.

    Letters are included for a few reasons: 1. Without them, you wouldn’t be able to see what you are typing when using in desktop applications; and 2. For old browsers or devices that do not support OpenType, you have an option to fall back to plain text.

    Now that we have a launched a few sets, our plan is to go back and develop a more original typeface for fallback. While the letters are not really meant to be visible, we can’t help ourselves :)

  5. Jameson Tyler says:
    Nov 2nd, 2012  11:11 pm
    Edit

    I’m using SS Social in a project where IE 8+ compatibility is a concern—is there somewhere I can find a javascript fallback as mentioned here?

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