Microsoft releases new open source font Cascadia Code - gHacks Tech News

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Microsoft releases new open source font Cascadia Code

Microsoft released a new open source font today on the company's GitHub website. The new font, called Cascadia Code, was announced at Microsoft's Build event in May.

It is a monospaced font designed specifically for code editors, development environments as well as terminal applications.

Microsoft developed it "hand in hand" with the new Windows Terminal application that the company released as a preview in June 2019. The font is available as a standalone download and will also be included in the next Windows Terminal application update according to Microsoft.

microsoft font cascadia code

Windows users who download the font to their system can right-click on it to install it right away or select preview to display a preview window.

The preview displays all major characters of the font as well as how it looks in different font sizes. The window has a print and install button to print it out or install it from the window as well.

Users who use other operating systems may install the font as well. How that is done depends on the Linux distribution; Ubuntu and Ubuntu-based systems accept the command fc-cache -f -v  to install new fonts that have been put into font directories.

The font distinguishes clearly between 0, o and O, and I and l which helps reduce the number of character-based errors, e.g. mistyped variables, significantly.

Cascadia Code supports programming ligatures. These may work out of the box in some development environments and need to be enabled in others. Developers who use Visual Studio Code need to enable Ligatures in the settings to use them in the programming environment.

Ligatures combine characters when you write them. For example, if you type != you get ≠, and when you type >= you get ≥ instead which may improve readability of the code.

The name comes from the Windows Terminal project initially as it was known as project Cascadia internally at Microsoft. The company did not just pick the name but polled users on Twitter and Cascadia won the vote (beating Cedar, Emerald, and Seattle in the process albeit some by a slim margin).

Microsoft added Code to the name of the font to indicate that it was designed specifically for coding purposes, but it can certainly be used for other purposes as well.

The font's version follows the Windows versioning scheme; the first release version of Cascadia Code is version 1909.16 indicating that it was released on September 16, 2019 to the public.

Now You: Have you installed new fonts on your system? (via Deskmodder)

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Comments

  1. Croatoan said on September 19, 2019 at 2:01 pm
    Reply

    I installed only Space Age font (The Orville series font). It looks cool for text on wallpapers and lock screen.

  2. slumbergod said on September 19, 2019 at 2:04 pm
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    Link?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on September 19, 2019 at 2:51 pm
      Reply

      It is in the summary box below the article.

    2. Tom Hawack said on September 19, 2019 at 4:00 pm
      Reply

      Link is is in the article’s Summary / Landing page

    3. heehaw said on September 20, 2019 at 2:33 am
      Reply
  3. Anonymous said on September 19, 2019 at 2:36 pm
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    nice, but “□□□□□□□” instead of unicode chars…

  4. Tom Hawack said on September 19, 2019 at 3:05 pm
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    Looks nice, different and though it’s “designed specifically for code editors, development environments as well as terminal applications.” I may very well insert it elsewhere, like sneakers together with a tuxedo, so-called the mixture of genres, often basically inelegant but so funky, yeah!.

    Merci Martin :=)

  5. Anonymous said on September 19, 2019 at 4:12 pm
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    Now, this is a decent article!

    Outta boy!

  6. John Fenderson said on September 19, 2019 at 4:48 pm
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    “Have you installed new fonts on your system?”

    No — I’m a programmer, so my font needs are simple and covered well by the standard fonts.

    “Ligatures combine characters when you write them. For example, if you type != you get ≠, and when you type >= you get ≥ instead which may improve readability of the code.”

    For programming?? That sounds awful!

    1. Ross Presser said on September 19, 2019 at 6:39 pm
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      It’s really not awful at all — after a couple days you hardly notice. When you hit the backspace next to a ligature, it changes from ≥ to > as you’d expect — i.e. it deletes the = which is the second char of the ligature. It’s purely visual, has no effect on editing at all.

      1. Ross PResser said on September 19, 2019 at 6:42 pm
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        And if you’re using a dumber program that doesn’t see the ligatures, like the old console (before the new windows terminal app), they don’t come into play at all. They only show when the app is aware of ligatures, like VS Code or VS.NET or Eclipse or whatever.

      2. Ross Presser said on September 19, 2019 at 6:46 pm
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        For example, this

        if (x >= 12 || x == 12 || x === 12) { x = 12 }

        ligatures like this:
        https://imgur.com/a/nuLJ0mR

        You can see at a glance the difference between one, two, or three equals signs — which is vital when doing javascript.

      3. John Fenderson said on September 19, 2019 at 9:30 pm
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        I understand. This is something that I would find intolerable, though. Fortunately, I don’t have to use it!

  7. jimp said on September 19, 2019 at 5:28 pm
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    Similar to Fira Code but heavier and darker. Displays colors better, especially the light colors that are usually used for comments. Bold and italics are clear and readable. Is a little dark and heavy for plain black on white. Seems to display the entire UTF-8 character set. Has ligatures to combine special characters and looks cool for code. I think I will try it for a while.

    1. Biu said on September 20, 2019 at 1:32 pm
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      It doesn’t display many UTF-8 characters. In fact, it displays almost none.

      1. jimp said on September 20, 2019 at 7:21 pm
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        It displays everything in my files, over 30 languages. Do you have the codepage set to UTF-8 (65001)?

      2. Biu said on September 25, 2019 at 5:55 pm
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        Not really.
        I just tested it quickly on Notepad++ with files already displaying correctly with Input font.
        Encoding is just UTF-8 in Notepad++.

  8. Darren said on September 19, 2019 at 5:41 pm
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    “The font distinguishes between 0, o and O, and I and l which helps reduce the number of character-based errors, e.g. miss-typed variables, significantly.”

    Thank God

  9. Anonymous said on September 19, 2019 at 5:56 pm
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    Yeah… I’ll stick with Cousine. This font is too “restless” because of the slanting edges and the (a, 4) uneven “crosslines” (t vs. f). The C/c, Q, 2 and 7 are also ugly as hell. So, guess it’ll be a huge success, like Comic Sans MS ;-)

  10. Angus said on September 19, 2019 at 10:35 pm
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    I’m sure microsoft have now placated those naysayers concerned about their use of other people’s open-source work, demanding they release the windows, office and exchange source code – by releasing a font source code.

  11. chesscanoe said on September 20, 2019 at 1:24 am
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    The IBM Plex family of fonts which includes many mono choices is my all time favorite for some of the reasons given here.
    https://www.ibm.com/plex/concept/

    But most of all it’s functional and pleasing to my eye and is my Windows 10 default wherever possible I can define it appropriately. It’s free to download and free to use both privately and commercially the last time I checked.
    https://github.com/IBM/plex/releases/tag/v1.0.2

    Still, Cascadia may be advantageous for some users in some circumstances.

    1. chesscanoe said on October 5, 2019 at 5:54 am
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      Cascadia Code is significantly improved with version 1910.04 per https://winaero.com/blog/microsoft-releases-cascadia-font-1910-04/ if you need its features.

  12. Anonymous said on September 20, 2019 at 9:54 am
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    On Windows, I still prefer the default Consolas. Liberation Mono is my current choice because it’s compact yet highly readable.

    These newer fonts such as Cascadia Code and Fira Code are interesting with their ligatures but those symbols are sometimes so far removed from the character sequence that it becomes confusing. I suppose it just requires getting used to it but I’m still hoping for something in the middle.

  13. jern said on September 20, 2019 at 10:29 pm
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    I use the “Hack” font for coding. It has a good glyph set and is legible. I like the clear differentiation between 0 and O and there’s no mistaking the lower case L and 1.
    You can see what it looks like here…
    https://www.fontsquirrel.com/fonts/hack

  14. Peterc said on September 21, 2019 at 5:08 pm
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    @Martin: It’s spelled “mistyped.” (I think there must be a Murphy’s Law corollary for writers that says if you’re going to make a typo or spelling mistake, it’s going to be when you’re *writing about* typos or spelling mistakes. ;-)

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on September 21, 2019 at 5:22 pm
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      Thanks Peter!

  15. KNTRO said on September 23, 2019 at 3:30 am
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    It does not include characters with diacritics. 😥 Too bad.

  16. Thomas said on September 24, 2019 at 10:54 am
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    No Unicode is a deal breaker for me. I don’t use monospaced fonts for coding (unless you count in the occasional dabbling with AutoHotkey), but for editing plaintext files in various languages with diacritics, so Unicode is a must for me.
    Also, as with most more recent fonts, the anti-aliased edges look too fuzzy for my liking. Although I’ve tried all sorts of monospaced fonts I keep returning to Fixedsys Excelsior, both because of its Unicode support (not perfect, but sufficient for my needs) and its readability. It looks terribly old-school, but I don’t mind that.
    The official Fixedsys Excelsior website seems to have disappeared, but some kind person thankfully took over. https://github.com/kika/fixedsys

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