[OS X TeX] Arial font

Anthony Morton amorton at fastmail.fm
Fri Feb 5 05:45:34 CET 2010

> Yes, if the institution is persnickety enough to require Arial, it  
> will be persnickety enough to notice and care about a Helvetica  
> being substituted.

Not in my experience: I find many people who write style guides simply  
use 'Arial' as a synonym for 'sans-serif typeface', because Arial is  
the sans-serif face that Microsoft Word happens to use by default.

At least in the world of conference papers and corporate house styles,  
the use of Arial rarely seems to proceed from a considered decision:  
more often it's just, "I'd like the text in a uniform sans-serif face;  
everyone's got Word, so I'll just specify Arial to make it easy for  

When I've submitted camera-ready copy in Helvetica in such situations,  
either it hasn't been noticed, or people have noticed but not cared.   
(I've yet to meet anyone who really cares about the difference.)

Personally, I prefer Gill Sans to either Helvetica or Arial when I  
want a sans-serif font.  After some time I did manage to convert the  
TrueType Gill Sans existing on my machine to work with pdfTeX.  (Of  
course, it's to avoid the need for such labour that XeTeX was created.)

Tony M.

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