Definition of terms used



.otf – OpenType file.

.ttf – TrueType file.

Ascender – The portion of a letter that extends above the x-height or mean line of a font. For example, the line of a lowercase b or the top of a lowercase t.

Contextual Alternates - Alternate letters that are substituted depending on what letter comes before or after the targeted letter for substitution. This allows for better script joining behavior, avoiding awkward letter combinations, creating a more natural looking effect, and sometimes for stylistic purposes.

Descender – The portion of a letter that extends below the x-height or baseline of a font. For example, the lower part of a lowercase letter g or p.

Diacritic – A mark added to a letter that changes the pronunciation. Some examples of diacritics are: acute, breve, and cedilla.

Font – A font is a particular style of a typeface. For example, Samantha Upright is a font, while Samantha is the typeface. Font and typeface are sometimes used interchangeably.

Glyph – A single character, symbol, punctuation, or ornament within a font.

Leading – The space between lines of type.

License - A font license is an agreement that gives you the right to use the font in a specific manner. There are three types of user licenses: A one-user, multi-user and an extended license.

Ligature - A ligature is two or more letters that are joined as a single glyph. Common examples are æ and œ.

Live type - Text that you can copy and paste, not a picture of text.

OpenType® – OpenType is a format for scalable fonts. In addition to TrueType’s basic structure, OpenType add additional options that enhance the typographic and language support capabilities.

Swash – A typographical flourish on a glyph, sometimes known as “that extra fancy bit.”

Tittle – The dot on the letter “i.” Honest, it’s really called that!

TrueType – TrueType is one of the most commonly used outline font formats.

Typeface – The complete collection of font styles. For example, the Spumante typeface includes the fonts: Spumante, Spumante Bold, Spumante Regular plus Shadow, and Spumante Shadow. Typeface and font are sometimes used interchangeably.

x-height – The height of the letter “x” in a font.

Check out this amazing glossary of type terms from Canva