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Pablo Impallari
Typeface Designer & Font Developer
Typeface Designer & Font Developer


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My first batch of glyphs is all converted to metapolator masters, from left to right:
origin/base, extra light condensed, extra light wide, extra bold condensed, extra bold wide

next stop: metapolation

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About four years ago, one of our senior VPs, Alan Eustace, started kicking around a new idea: coming up with a way to explore the stratosphere similar to the way scuba divers explore the ocean. He pulled together a small team of scientists and engineers, and they got to work building and testing a system that could carry him high above the earth.

Early this morning, wearing the system he and the team developed -- a custom-made pressurized spacesuit, lifted via a helium-filled balloon -- Alan ascended to 136,000 feet before skydiving safely back down to earth, breaking the sound barrier on his way. He’s the first person to ever ascend to that altitude, and only the second to break the sound barrier outside of an airplane. Crazy, right! All in a day’s work when it comes to furthering scientific exploration...

Read more about the mission here:

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Everything old is new again: "Free U2 type with every cassette player"

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What if the font itself becomes the interface?
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As winter begins in the Southern hemisphere, many Brazilians are sending paper balloons skyward in celebration of Festa Junina, a festival celebrating the winter solstice. Project Loon was honored to join in the festivities this year with our own balloon launch in the rural outskirts of Campo Maior, where we connected Linoca Gayoso, a local school, to the Internet for the first time.

The vast majority of this community doesn’t have Internet or cell service—but the locals know of a few very specific spots around town where they might find a weak signal. So if you see them sitting in trees, you’ll know why. (In fact, they have a word for this—‘vaga-lume,’ which means ‘fireflying,’ in English—because at night that’s what the glow from their mobile phones looks like.) But with the Project Loon team in town and one of our balloons overhead, the students in Tiao’s geography class were able to get to the Internet from their classroom for the first time as they learned about world cultures. 

This test flight marked a few significant ‘firsts’ for Project Loon as well. Launching near the equator taught us to overcome more dramatic temperature profiles, dripping humidity and scorpions. And we tested LTE technology for the first time; this could enable us to provide an Internet signal directly to mobile phones, opening up more options for bringing Internet access to more places.

Check out these photos for a behind-the-scenes look on how it all came together.
The Brazil Test
12 Photos - View album

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and now… the final and agreed version of the Metapolator product vision:

Metapolator is an open web tool for making many fonts. It supports working in a font design space, instead of one glyph, one face, at a time.

With Metapolator, ‘pro’ font designers are able to create and edit fonts and font families much faster, with inherent consistency. They gain unique exploration possibilities and the tools to quickly adapt typefaces to different media and domains of use.

With Metapolator, typographers gain the possibility to change existing fonts—or even create new ones—to their needs.

Metapolator is extendible through plugins and custom specimens. It contains all the tools and fine control that designers need to finish a font.
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