Finally I got my Typekit invite yesterday :) It’s ridiculous really when you think about how long the web has built on only a handfull of fonts.. well no longer!

All the major browsers are now starting to support this embeded font thing if you provide a URL in your CSS to the font file, great news. Problem is there’s not that many fonts that you can ‘legally’ use in this way. That’s where Typekit comes in, it’s essentially web only font licencing service, with some clever stuff behind the scenes that smoothes out differences in how browsers handle type.

You can sign up and use the free fonts (for free), or drop a bit of cash (up to $50 a year subscription) to get access to hundreds more.

“For designers and developers, this is a significant step forward. No longer will you need to trap your content in images or Flash just to express yourself visually. Pages will be more usable, accessible, and indexable.”

Buendia by César Puertas

I’ve been having a little play around with it, and am currently using Buendia by César Puertas for the titles. I think it might be time for a full re-design soon though.

Rob’s on the telly again

Rob Law, Trunki Programme

Pleasantly surprised to see my mate Rob’s face on the front page of iPlayer last night! He’s in the first episode of Dragons’ Den: On Tour (skip halfway through for his bit).

There’s a sneak peek of his new hard cased rucksack which doubles as a child’s booster seat – BoostApak. Apparently there’s a law now that anyone under 12 or less than 135cm in height has to use a booster seat (news to me?), so I’m sure he’ll sell a shit load as it’s dual purpose makes it a hell of a lot more useful :) You’ll have to wait until Spring 2010 to get hold of one though :(

Also if you’ve got a little kiddie, check out his new limited edition Gruffalo Trunki, almost as good as mine & Nicky’s mammoth effort.

Your name & the internet


Up until today I wished I made a more unique name than Simon Cook, there’s shit loads of them out there! I could never get near the top of the google rankings, although I’m now slowly making my way up there, currently 5th :)

But I’ve seen 2 things today that made me happy that I’ve got loads of other namesakes. First up is this Personas site by Aaron Zinman from MIT it searches the internets for you and your namesakes and creates a visual aggregation of their online identities. I think the final result is a bit of a let down (I’m sure Jonathan Harris could do some much more interesting with the data). But watching the other Simon Cook’s and things they are up to flashing across the screen was quite fascinating.

Craig Robinson

Then I randomly went to see what Craig Robinson (Flip Flop Flyin’) was up to. He’s snapped up CraigRobinson.com when it became available, and rather than use it himself, he’s made a site linking up all the Craig Robinsons out there!

I love the idea, I think there should be a law that ‘name URLs’ should link up everyone that shares the name. I would definitely do the same if SimonCook.com ever became available.

Channel 4 now on a Mac

No idea when this actually happened, but finally they’ve sorted out whatever DRM issues were forcing them to make 4oD PC only and it’s now viewable on a Mac :)

I don’t watch broadcast TV anymore, why would you when you have on demand? Even though the BBC iPlayer is so amazing, it’s good to have the option of another channel.

Right I’m off to get my fix of Channel 4 On Demnd right now.

Update: Blimey it’s a bit of a nightmare trying to find programmes on there, the navigation is garbage… Stick all the shows in massive drop down box? Wtf is that all about?

Layer Tennis Results

Cook vs Crowle - Layer tennis

Game set and match to Rex by the look of the votes. If you missed it, you can still view the match volley by volley here » I think in the heat of the moment I kind of forgot about the ‘layer’ aspect of the game… The advantage of us both being in the same room was I could see what Rex was drawing and start sketching ideas for my return volley before my 15min had even started. But that kind of led to me just doing a doodle and not re-using any of the layers. Nevermind, it was a great match and we both had fun, especially the post match drinks :)

I was impressed with the speed that Rex could knock out full colour visuals. My usual style is to pencil sketch, scan, then work up vector outlines and then colour last. Not a hope in hell I could get all that done in 15min, so I just stuck to the pencil sketches. Rex though works straight into photoshop with a Wacom tablet, it was quite an eye opener, might have to get one and give it a go.

Thanks again to Anne for her commentry, check out her reflections on the game. And of course thanks to Coudal for inviting us to play :)

Here’s the both of us in action:

Playing layer tennis

Layer Tennis

Layer Tennis

This very exciting news – me and Rex Crowle will be playing in an All-English bout of Coudal Partner’s Layer Tennis this Friday. The idea is we swap a photoshop file back and forth every 15min over a match of 10 ‘volleys’. I’ve no idea how it’s going to pan out, but I suspect they’ll be much doodling of monsters, moustaches and general mayhem.

I think we’re going to create a little lawn tennis club in my front room, I’m going to paint my desk to look like a little tennis court with our Macs either side. Obviously we’ll be quaffing Pimms and munching strawberries & cream in between each volley.

The match kicks off 4pm Greenwich Mean Time and lasts about 2 and a half hours.  Sign up for your free season tickets here and watch it live on the internets!

To get a flavour of what it’s all about, check out last weeks match between Jason Santa Maria & Derek Powazek. Jason also wrote an interesting account of the match here »