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Font Application Idea

March 9, 2008

I would like to create an application that simulates a human’s handwriting. Currently Windows Fonts do not have support for this. Ideally what I would like to have the ability to do as a developer is simply provide versions of a font and have the font randomly display a version of the letters to me as I type. For example I would create a font called Robert’s Handwriting font and instead of giving it 1 single style for every letter of the alphabet, I would provide at least 10 closely matched styles per letter. When using the font to type in an application, the font would randomly choose from the 10 a’s or 10 b’s or 10 c’s or whatever key the user pressed and display it. That way you could slightly simulate a more natural/real font. Obviously this isn’t a trivial task that I can easily take on but I have thought of a work around in which I think *may* work. What I plan to do is write a little applet that sits in the task bar, the idea is that you launch it and also open word. From here you would turn on “human handwriting” in the application and what it would do is capture each of your key strokes silently and using word automation (please keep reading and don’t stop yet =] I know word automation is ugly 😉 ) it would change MS Word’s font on every
key stroke. I am excited to see if this would work. I am concerned that it may be very CPU heavy when speed typists like myself can type over 100 words per minute. I will report back when I get time to launch this little side project.

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