I've been using the PragmataPro font in Delphi recently and I really like it a lot. Before I get to the key topic, let me underline that fact that most of you probably spend a lot of time using an editor (either the one in the Delphi IDE, or the editor of in Visual Studio, Eclipse, on any other IDE, as well as stand alone editors). While we spend a lot of time reading and writing source code, we often forget the the readability of what is on the screen depends also on the font we use. When is the last time you change font of your preferred editor?

Of course, your choice of fonts is limited by the fact you need a fixed with font, and not a proportional one, so that words show up in "columns" and indentation works as expected. There aren't many fixed size fonts out there. In the past I often moved from the classic Courier New (the default in Delphi) to Lucida Console (which I prefer to showing code when I do a presentation). I've now moved to PragmataPro. Here you can see these 3 fonts:


These iamges show the same text in Courier New, Lucida Consule, and PragmataPro all at size 12. As you can see pragmata is as tall as Courier (Lucida let's you fit more lines in the editor), but Pragmata is more compact horizontally, so you can fit 80 or even 100 characters in the screen, even with all those side panes that Delphi and other IDEs use these days.

This ProgamataPro font is the extension of the older Pragmata font, by the same author, Fabrizio Schiavi, a font designer who made this fixed-size font specifically for programmers. (Disclaimer: the author of PragmataPro is the designer of my book covers and a person I have a business relationship with. he gave me the font for free. Still, I'm not earning anything by promoting his fonts, I think the quality of his work deserves it). Fabrizio was so kind to give me a free license to the font, but I was more than willing to pay for it. Some more text set in Pragmata is below, but I used it also for my recent FireMonkey webinar:

What's interesting, and another reason for blogging, is that PragmataPro is now available as part of an open-source funding project on IndieGogo: http://www.indiegogo.com/PragmataPro-the-ideal-programming-typeface-becomes-open-source. In short, whatever is collected in sales and offers goes into a pool and then this pool is large enough the font will become open source and free for everyone. I think a company like Embarcadero should contribute, or buy a license to include in its editors (not only Delphi). But I might be biased.

Which font do you use in your editor? Do you think it matters?