FontPrep: The Missing CSS3 Font Generator for Mac OS X
A couple days ago, if you asked me how to add webfonts to my website, I would have immediately said Font Squirrel. One of the reasons that Font Squirrel is awesome is their @font-face generator. It is the most popular solution for generating webfonts and font CSS online.
That’s all about to change. See, there are several limitations to using an online generator for fonts. After uploading two or three fonts, it’s obvious that Font Squirrel would be not be able to handle hundreds of font files. A web browser simply isn’t built to support that. Previewing generated fonts in the browser on the fly is also impossible. There’s also the licensing to worry about: Font Squirrel only accepts fonts that are “legally eligible for web embedding.”
FontPrep solves all of this. FontPrep is a native Mac OS X app that prepares your fonts for the web. At its core, it generates webfont bundles with full browser compatibility. After dragging and dropping a TTF font on to the app, the whole bundle can be downloaded, including WOFF, SVG and EOT formats, and the snippets of CSS needed to add these fonts to a website. And that’s just scraping the surface of what the app can do:
FontPrep can spin up a local server running a font testbed in the browser. After adding fonts to FontPrep, the entire webfont can be previewed in the browser. Every glyph in the typeface is rendered, as well as a waterfall of font sizes and a text area for testing the font with custom text. Font size is easily changed as well.
According to the creators, Brian and Matthew Gonzalez, FontPrep was created with the goal of making an “easy to use, drag & drop OSX app which makes our lives as developers much easier when it comes to working with fonts.” They succeeded: not only is FontPrep highly functional, it is also beautiful. Admittedly, their app have less options than Expert mode on Font Squirrel, but they are working on adding more support. Meanwhile, head over to FontPrep.com and pick up the app. It’s free for the next 6 hours, after that it costs $5.