Creating Typefaces from Everyday Things

AnyType is a mobile application that generates unique typefaces from photographs of shapes that people find in their environment. In keeping with the principles of aesthetic interaction, the design of AnyType supports opportunities for surprise, storytelling, and expression. Our paper discussing AnyType presents data collected from two observational studies. In both studies, we found that people appropriated the application to create highly personalized messages. They found inspiration in unexpected locations, created memories from nuanced details in their lives, and creatively explored the design space provided by the system. Drawing from our observations, we discuss possible roles mobile devices could play in people’s personal meaning making, creative process, and discovery, in interaction with elements of their physical environment.

Awards
2012 San Francisco Urban Prototyping Festival, Open Call Selection
2013 SXSWEco, Place by Design Finalist

Press
designweek.co.uk // typorn.org