Microsoft TrueType Fonts

In the early 90's when Windows 3.0 shipped, desktop publishing was a critical market for PCs. Apple was perceived as the champion of WYSIWYG, though it, like Microsoft, was hostage to Adobe's printer and font technologies. It was therefore considered an essential improvement to the next version of Windows that it provide not merely true WYSIWYG, but also typeset-quality output.

In late '91, with the integration of TrueType into Windows well under way, it was proposed to package quality fonts as a demonstration of Windows new capabilities, as well as taking a bite at the font market. James was tapped for functional manager positions for both the Windows 3.1 printer technology components (see TrueImage, and Windows Printing System projects) and for what ended up being a series of font packages.


The first font pack had only about three months available for creation if it was to join the April '92 launch of Windows 3.1. James assembled a small team of contractors who developed all the user content (UI, on-line, print) for installation and font management utilities during this period.








Various font packs followed, which were essentially just font files, an installation program, and a font manager program to supplement Windows and provide Win 3.0 backward compatibility.






However, to strengthen Windows reputation as a desktop publishing platform, another overly ambitious font pack was proposed and released.

This one had complex and exceptionally beautiful typefaces; tutorials in font use; on-line document templates; cool font utilities; and extensive background on the fonts and TrueType technology.









The user manual successfully served multiple goals:

  • User product guide
  • Industry resource for Microsoft's TrueType story
  • Demonstration of TrueType and Windows as a desktop publishing environment by having all page layout and typesetting (except the cover) with Microsoft Word for Windows and TrueType.


Team sweatshirt