In many cases it seems that the starting point for webdesign is which web-safe font to use and to then end up using that font as the first choice for the design.
What the above suggests is that rather than compromising to a purely web-safe font-family, the web-safe fallback should be influenced by first selecting what the perfect font would be. A little ingenuity should then enable the rest of the
font-family, addressing platform-specific needs, to be assembled between this ideal start and the safe end, while maintaining control throughout.
Under this approach the sequence in which fonts would be specified within the family would be:
- The Ideal Font
- Nearest alternative(s)
- Platform safe alternative(s)
- Universally web-safe
While methods such as Scalable Inman Flash Replacement (sIFR) also exist, they are really best suited to use in headings, rather than body text. Even these techniques though can benefit from a more considered approach to the
font-family since this is what they fall back to in cases where the replacement method won’t work.