snowman

Use The Best Available Snowman

Sometimes peo­ple get a lit­tle wacky about fonts — and by wacky, I mean obses­sive.  Something that recently bub­bled up into my online read­ing is a par­tic­u­lar obses­sion with the amper­sand.  Typographers do not get to use the amper­sand all that much and most fonts have incred­i­bly bor­ing amper­sands, so when the time comes to use an amper­sand, it’s party time.  You gen­er­ally have to spice things up because of the bor­ing default: use the italic ver­sion or bor­row one from a totally dif­fer­ent font face.  See also: Use the Best Available Ampersand & Open Source Ampersands.  I don’t fault any­one for the whole amper­sand thing.  Some of the vari­a­tions are cool, and geeky obses­sion is what makes the world go ’round.

Something that recently occurred to me when look­ing for a par­tic­u­lar Unicode char­ac­ter in the Mac char­ac­ter viewer is that there are a whole lot of non-letter “let­ters” in the Unicode alpha­bet that have all sorts of fun font vari­a­tions.  For a good time, take a stroll through the Dingbats sec­tion or the Miscellaneous Symbols area.  One of those sym­bols is Unicode 0x2603, the ever-popular snow­man.  Sometimes he wears a hat.  Sometimes that hat is a fez.  Sometimes there are snowflakes falling around him.  To help you best pick out the right snow­man for any given job, I thought I would present the default (or default plus what­ever apps installed what­ever fonts on my machine) Mac snow­man vari­a­tions.

In all hon­esty, I only found six main vari­a­tions. There were a lot of entries in the char­ac­ter viewer, but it seems that the reg­u­lar, bold, and oblique snow­man “vari­ants” of any given font end up being exactly the same.  It is pos­si­ble that there are more vari­a­tions out there in the world, in fonts that I do not have, but the six I found are as fol­lows:

Now remem­ber, kids: use this new­found snow­man knowl­edge only for good.  NEVER for evil! Use the snow­man wisely.

Posted in: Dear Diary

3 thoughts on “Use The Best Available Snowman

  1. Cooooool! It seems much too small to rec­og­nize as a snow­man, until it gets up to about 20 points or so.

    Here’s a nice ref­er­ence on it:
    http://www.fileformat.info/info/unicode/char/2603/index.htm

    It seems like a lot of map­pings have this trans­late as a plus sign (+). Here is that typed through the win­dows Alt+numpad method: +

    Here it is copied and pasted fFrom the page I linked: ☃

    Here is an HTML entity ☃ ☃

    Nifty!! =)

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