When the web first started everything was in Times New Roman, black on grey with few images.
Things have moved on a long way since then, but there are still very few fonts. I’ve worked on many sites that have tried to overcome this by various routes.
- Creating an image of headline text in the desired font
This can look good but offers poor accessibility and it’s hard to update
It can work well - but performs badly if overused, and can cause problems with z-ordering on some systems
- @font-face Part of the CSS standard which allows you to provide font files for download.
However, this is actually quite old technology - I tried to use it back in the days of Internet Explorer 5 and Netscape Navigator.
Then as now there were competing standards for downloadable font files.
At the time both browsers only offered a web specific font format which didn’t look good enough to use.
However; Firefox 3.5 and Safari 4 now support regular TTF and OTF fonts and these look great.
There is still the problem that most good fonts are supplied under license - which prevents you providing them for download.
But with two major browsers providing a good implementation for standard font file we can hope that it won’t be too much longer before the problem is solved.