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DSE Typewriter

Printed Example

A project to create a coding font inspired by early 20th-century typewriters.

And to practice editing fonts directly in FontForge.

About This Font

This font is not the result of any scans or traces of samples, specimens, or other output from an actual typewriter. I personally eyeballed and drew everything in FontForge.

DSE Typewriter is more like an amalgamation of old-school typewriter fonts with features semi-arbitrarily picked from each one, as well as a few coding-friendly features that were not in use on actual typewriters of the period.

Though this is intended to be useful as a coding font, I emphasized on aesthetics while maintaining some degree of readability. There is room for improvement. I may create a version of this that borrows from old "reproducing typewriter" fonts (e.g., Monotype No. 72L, Reproducing Typewriter).

Features and Characteristics

  • Relatively low ex-height.

  • Lining numerals, i.e., all start at the baseline and end at the same height.

  • Full ASCII and Latin-1 coverage, along with selected extended Latin, punctuation, graphic, and currency symbols.

    Includes every character you can type in the US International Layout in Windows.

    Includes every character you can type on a Mac when the input source is U.S.

    Includes all box drawing characters.

    Supports most western European languages.

    Includes basic Cyrillic.

  • Coding-friendly distinctive characters: li1| Oo0 `'"

  • Elite scale typeface (12 characters per inch at 12-point font size).

  • Perfectly useful as a traditional typewriter face for other purposes, if you don’t mind the zero (0) having a dot in the middle.

Caveats and Answers to Questions You Might Ask

  • There aren't any hints, so on certain platforms, this font may not be readable at lower font sizes. Auto-hints seem to work okay-ish in Windows Google Chrome.

    Chances are, at any particular point in time, my brain is too mush to learn how to do those.

  • This is most definitely a work in progress.


  • dse-typewriter-font.ttf is the base variant.

  • dse-typewriter-font-lh.ttf adds metrics based on a 1.2-em line height.

See Also

See for DSE Typewriter Bitmap, a couple bitmap fonts I created long ago. They also have coding-friendly features, but only cover ASCII and Latin-1. There is a .bdf version for use in the X Window System and other environments that support it, and there is a .ttf version.



Bug fixes?

Open an issue in Github or email me. Either way is fine.

Shoutouts, Thanks, etc.

  • Guy Ollerearnshaw, for pointing out a bug in U+2567.


Sample (Mac)

Sample (Windows)

Coding (Mac)

Coding (Windows)