Known as the first name in digital type, Adobe is one of the main reasons your Mom knows what a typeface is.
Over 25 years ago, they had a huge hand in developing the technologies that sparked the desktop publishing revolution. Today, they’re a great resource if you’re looking for typefaces that are classic or cutting edge, and they’re always determined to make faces that have broad language support.
For our purposes, we’re using the Classification Guide found here in the Adobe Font Finder.
Adobe has thousands of typefaces in their library and like Linotype and FontShop, their classification systems are geared towards the consumer more than the scholar.
The Sans-Serif single category is lacking where the Serifs are strange. Venetian and Gerald, while different, could easily be looped together under something like an Old Style. then we have transitional and two terms we fully thought were basically synonyms: Didone and Modern (feel free to argue with us in the comments).
Adobe calls out Blackletter, Monospaced and Script outside of the Decorative & Display category. Which could either be considered a move in brilliancy or a move in seriously confused. Right now we’re leaning towards confused. Perhaps the decision is motivated by the fact that those three categories are the biggest and most likely to be reasonably used outside of the umbrella of the Serif or a Sans. But then where are the Slabs?
Decorative & Display in itself is a good attempt. But we have to wonder if every single Display face would fit into one of those seven categories, and if the answer is no, then why both subdividing Decorative & Display at all?
Keep checking back; one of these days we’ll tackle Typekit too.