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Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 9:48 am
by steve98052
I know that the traditional Traveller heading font is Optima, but I want something I can use in Google Drive documents. Has anyone figured out a reasonably close substitute? Or must I settle for a font that doesn't look right, or paste in images of characters where I want Optima?

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 1:30 pm
by Yatima
There's a discussion of which Google fonts match Optima most closely here:

https://www.quora.com/Which-font-in-the ... ike-Optima

The conclusion seems to be that "There is no sans serif in the Google Web Fonts library that is even remotely like it."

J

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 7:17 pm
by steve98052
Yatima wrote:. . .
https://www.quora.com/Which-font-in-the ... ike-Optima

The conclusion seems to be that "There is no sans serif in the Google Web Fonts library that is even remotely like it."
Thanks!

I found that article, but I was hoping someone here might have a more encouraging answer; since Optima is Traveller tradition, I thought I might find a different (and maybe more current) answer here.

I have a bitmap of the logo, so I guess I'll use that, even if it's a suboptimal solution.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 7:36 pm
by Yatima
steve98052 wrote:
Yatima wrote:. . .
I found that article, but I was hoping someone here might have a more encouraging answer; since Optima is Traveller tradition, I thought I might find a different (and maybe more current) answer here. I have a bitmap of the logo, so I guess I'll use that, even if it's a suboptimal solution.
Well why not use Optima, which is what the author of the article actually suggests? Typekit and such systems make it fairly easy to host typefaces, and each face isn't that expensive.

J

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Tue Dec 20, 2016 3:11 am
by steve98052
Yatima wrote:Well why not use Optima, which is what the author of the article actually suggests? Typekit and such systems make it fairly easy to host typefaces, and each face isn't that expensive.
I suppose I could try to use Extensis, but its documentation doesn't make me very confident about being able to use Optima in Google docs. I could use Word, but it's nice to be able to work on things from any device.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Tue Dec 20, 2016 3:55 pm
by InexorableTash
Marcellus is the least bad match I've found in the Google Fonts library.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Tue Dec 20, 2016 4:33 pm
by steve98052
InexorableTash wrote:Marcellus is the least bad match I've found in the Google Fonts library.
Thanks! "Least bad" is more accurate than "best", but the resemblance is good enough to get the idea across, particularly with the flared extremities of the characters.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 6:54 pm
by steve98052
This isn't an answer to my original question about Google Drive, but I found a free public license Optima look-alike for download and web use:

URW Classico

It's mentioned in Wikipedia article "Optima" in the "Derivatives" section.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:48 pm
by Annatar Giftbringer
Nice find, thanks for sharing!

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 10:03 pm
by FreeTrav
steve98052 wrote:
Tue Dec 20, 2016 4:33 pm
InexorableTash wrote:Marcellus is the least bad match I've found in the Google Fonts library.
Thanks! "Least bad" is more accurate than "best", but the resemblance is good enough to get the idea across, particularly with the flared extremities of the characters.
Quattrocento Sans isn't a better match than Marcellus, but it's not a worse match, either.


In widely available fonts other than Google, there's URW Classico and Zapf Humanist (usually found as ZapfHumanst BT); the latter is the digital redesign of Optima by Optima's original designer, Hermann Zapf

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:20 am
by ShawnDriscoll
Eras Demi ITC for me. I think I have a regular version somewhere as well.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:07 pm
by steve98052
FreeTrav wrote:
Tue Jul 10, 2018 10:03 pm
Quattrocento Sans isn't a better match than Marcellus, but it's not a worse match, either.
I'll have to take a look at it if I try Google Docs again.

(I just ust revivedthis thread to keep Traveller font talk in one place.)
In widely available fonts other than Google, there's URW Classico and Zapf Humanist (usually found as ZapfHumanst BT); the latter is the digital redesign of Optima by Optima's original designer, Hermann Zapf.
The nice thing about URW Classico is the free license; I don't think Zapf Humanist has that. But it's certainly easy to find.

Another font topic:
What is the font in the body text of the classic Traveller books? Also Optima, or something else?

If Optima is only in titles, the right Google Docs solution might be to put the title into an SVG, with fonts converted to paths.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:22 pm
by FreeTrav
steve98052 wrote:
Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:07 pm
Another font topic:
What is the font in the body text of the classic Traveller books? Also Optima, or something else?

If Optima is only in titles, the right Google Docs solution might be to put the title into an SVG, with fonts converted to paths.
The body font for the Classic LBBs was, per LKW, Helvetica. I think it looks more like Aksidenz Grotesk, but at that size, the differences are going to be subtle. There are a gazoogol Helvalikes out there, including g-dhelpusArial.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:25 pm
by FreeTrav
ShawnDriscoll wrote:
Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:20 am
Eras Demi ITC for me. I think I have a regular version somewhere as well.
Eras is the font for the Mongoose I titles; it was never one of my favorites - though its serif sibling, Friz Quadrata, did go through a period of heavy use in my experimentation with fonts.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 11:32 pm
by InexorableTash
FreeTrav wrote:
Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:22 pm
steve98052 wrote:
Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:07 pm
Another font topic:
What is the font in the body text of the classic Traveller books? Also Optima, or something else?

If Optima is only in titles, the right Google Docs solution might be to put the title into an SVG, with fonts converted to paths.
The body font for the Classic LBBs was, per LKW, Helvetica. I think it looks more like Aksidenz Grotesk, but at that size, the differences are going to be subtle. There are a gazoogol Helvalikes out there, including g-dhelpusArial.
Univers is another similar font that appears to be a better match than Helvetica.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:06 pm
by steve98052
FreeTrav wrote:
Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:22 pm
The body font for the Classic LBBs was, per LKW, Helvetica. I think it looks more like Aksidenz Grotesk, but at that size, the differences are going to be subtle. There are a gazoogol Helvalikes out there, including g-dhelpusArial.
Looking at the upper case "R" and digit "7", it's clearly not Akzidenz-Grotesk, which has a straight leg on the "R", and a serif on the top-left bar of the "7". The Akzidenz-Grotesk "7" also widens near the bottom, but that's invisible at the type size.

But it's not Helvetica either. Looking at the upper case "Q", the tail reaches straight right from the bottom, cut off square. In Helvetica it crosses diagonally, reaches to about the baseline, and is cut off square.

I saw that Univers has a tail that reaches straight right, and looked through every letter I could find in the Book 2 Starships (where the drive and power plant table made it easy to find all the upper case letters), and everything letter I looked at is consistent with Univers. I see that a free alternative meant to be an exact copy is U001.

Re: Optima substitute for Google Drive documents

Posted: Tue Jul 31, 2018 7:15 pm
by steve98052
I found another nice Optima substitute that seems to be freely available (but still not available on Google Drive): Optane. It's available from a variety of sources, but this one seems to be the closest thing to official: Optane Font - copyfonts.com. The original owner appears to be out of business, so its licensing situation is a bit strange.

Since there isn't any decent Google Drive substitute for Optima, I think the only solution is to install Optima or a substitute on a desktop, create an Inkscape image with Optima or the substitute, convert the text to vectors, and then use the resulting SVG image for Optima titles. That would be ridiculous for body text, but it's tolerable for a limited number of titles.