Dyslexia is a disorder that involves difficulties in learning to read or interpret words, letters, and other symbols. The disorder is misunderstood by the masses, but unlike what they believe, it in no way affects general intelligence, with many sufferers becoming successful in life.
Daniel Britton, a graphic designer from Kent, is among them after his accomplishment creating a font to simulate the visual experience of the condition. After showing his work to a few peers, Britton- who recently landed a job with a local dyslexia awareness commission- feels like he succeeded in what he set out to do.
Although at this moment in time there is no scientific evidence to support his theory, Britton, 25, believes that the font, dubbed the Dyslexia font, uses Helvetica as a base, but removes 40 per cent of the typeface’s lines, ensures the reading speed of an average person would be slowed to match that of a person suffering from Dyslexia. This occurs as readers have to take their time to decipher the letters and make sense of the sentences.
Britton said: “The whole process of reading is 10 times slower, similar to that of a dyslexic reader, to recreate the embarrassment of reading with everyday type.”
I, for one, spent forever attempting to decipher the message (page left) written in the font and therefore couldn’t begin to imagine how one would cope having to deal with that constantly. I’ve realised I take “simple” things like reading for granted when I really should not since it’s not the same for everyone. Due to this, I am extremely hopeful that others will face the same issues and that the awareness raised by the font will encourage individuals to be more supportive to suffers of the condition as they too can empathise with the frustration of reading.
The only questions on my mind are, what does a person with Dyslexia see when they try to read the font, and why is the font named “dyslexia” when it does not actually show what someone with the condition would see, but instead re-creates the feeling of reading being slowed?