A Twisted Genius Designed a Typewriter for the World's Most Hated Font
Designer Jesse England has created a paradox.
He took a typewriter from the '70s, the kind of serious typing machine that your all-too-serious friend might swear is the only way he can write his novel, and added something profoundly unserious. This typewriter, you see, can only type in Comic Sans.
The retrofitted typewriter, called the Sincerity Machine, is a ridiculous combination of old-timey manuscripts and mid-1990s chain emails, of hipster aesthetics and adorable emails from your grandmother.
What does England have to say for himself? Here's his explanation:
The creator maintains that he's not just trolling the designers. "As part of my ongoing thesis of questioning how we create, consume, store (and fetishize) media," England writes on his website. "It's my wish that a classic, functioning typewriter altered to write in the most popularly despised font of modern times will provoke thoughts about such media concerns."
In order to make the Sincerity Machine, England used a laser engraving tool to etch the new letters into a Sears-branded Brother Charger 11 typewriter. He also cut new vinyl covers for the keys to showcase the font.
It's just an art project, so if you're interested you may have to make your own. There's only one Sincerity Machine at the moment, and it's not for sale.
What it means: "While making it, I thought a lot about the Comic Sans typeface and how ridiculed it is," England says in the video. "But it is also a mark of sincerity for those who do not have graphic design experience. I'm not particularly enamored with this font, but I don't think it deserves the flak it gets."
And it does get a lot of flak. The Internet hates a lot of things, but it might hate Comic Sans most. You might say that Comic Sans is the Nickelback of fonts. Or maybe Nickelback is the Comic Sans of bands.
And like Nickelback, the vitriol directed at Comic Sans is a reaction to its popularity. That seems to be what England is getting at here — lots of people use the font. Maybe there's no need for the rest of us to be such snobs about it.
Or maybe he just wants to watch the world burn.