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Careful! This post is looking a little old and could be inaccurate in many, many ways

One of the issues many web designers face is that of the limited number of web safe fonts that can be used to display standard text. Now Cufón has entered the game are we a step closer to a new world of web typography.

Previously the only method of using a wide range of fonts on the web was to use image replacement. This however can be time consuming, difficult to maintain and bad for SEO, especially if used for all the text in a website. Over a year ago I came across Sifr as a more workable solution but found it to have a number of downsides mainly to do with its dependence on Flash and its inexplicable ability to resize text depending on the size of containing elements. All this frustrated me, limiting the situations I felt comfortable in using it.

The past couple of days however I have been giving Cufón a try after seeing it working its way around the twittersphere. This essentially is a JavaScript only solution that so far has been a little easier to handle. It still has its issues such as inconsistent line-heights in Firefox 2 and issues when using inline elements such as span (namely because Cufón outputs into span tags). Also you are unable to select the text Cufón outputs as yet, but all this being said it’s an easier to handle solution than Sifr in my experience so far.

Although I tend to avoid text replacement where possible, namely because it leads to code bloat and increased load times I will be using Cufón when necessary (unless it frustrates me in the same way Sifr did). Hopefully however by that time some solution to the licensing issues that plague @font-face will be found so that we can a lightweight and final solution to web fonts, but that’s probably another post entirely.