Department of Public Affairs

Bulletin BT-002

Bulletin BT-002

Bulletin # BT-002
Visibility PUBLIC
Date of Publication 2023-01-30
Last Updated 2023-02-10
Revision B


If you're an existing customer, get the latest v1.009 release of Berkeley Mono:


Purchase a genuine license of Berkeley Mono (now offering Ligatures!):

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Got a cup of coffee? We'll talk about Ligatures. We'll talk about corporate bullshit. We'll talk about something new. So go ahead, brew a cup of your favorite beverage.

Berkeley Mono v1.009 is now available for download, featuring a plethora of visually striking ligatures and they are certain to add a touch of flair in your coding adventures. We're releasing them as beta and we're not responsible for any damage caused to your state-of-the-art IBM mainframe machine.

Second, it is with great pleasure that we announce Berkeley Graphics's foray into the realm of custom corporate typography! Oh yes. Berkeley Graphics LLC has commissioned itself to expend valuable time on something that is completely unnecessary, but undeniably cool. A corporate typeface called Chicago Corporate. We've been dreaming about our own custom typeface since "I just bought a domain name. Trying to think about a good idea now." We'll also talk about interesting visual motifs to compliment our identity.

And, we're working on a new futuristic typeface for code/programming—Houston Mono, an Asimovian typeface for the future.

Berkeley Mono Ligatures – v1.009 Release

Berkeley Mono Ligatures Specimen

We covered ligatures and our impartial stance in the last bulletin. After much anticipation, we are thrilled to announce the availability of ligatures, a whole Smörgåsbord of 150+ ligatures—almost every possible coding ligature and a kitchen sink. For those of you who prefer to be unencumbered by such frivolous embellishments, rest assured that the option to use Berkeley Mono without ligatures is still available.

In addition, Berkeley Mono v1.009 release ships with whole bunch of bug fixes and optical refinements. We've slipped in a few new glyphs even though that wasn't the focus of this release. If you need help enabling ligatures, there are some excellent resources to guide you through it. We must caution that there are still ongoing optical and open-type issues with ligatures, and they are currently in beta-release mode. If you find a bug, please let us know.

Release version v1.009
Ligatures status BETA
Ligatures type STANDARD
Ligature cuts Regular, Bold, Italics, Italics Bold
New glyphs 600+
Latest datasheet Download (PDF)

In the previous bulletin, we entertained the idea of 'precision-ligatures'. There are several issues with it. We've put that on the back burner for now.

You may use the following Ligatures Explorer to see if you can find Waldo.

Ligatures Explorer

Berkeley Mono Ligatures Arithmetics On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Arithmetics Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Bitwise On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Bitwise Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Clojure On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Clojure Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Comments On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Comments Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Comparison On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Comparison Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures C# On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures C# Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Elixir On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Elixir Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Equality On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Equality Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures F# On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures F# Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Go On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Go Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Haskell On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Haskell Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures HTML On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures HTML Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Java On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Java Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Javascript On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Javascript Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Kotlin On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Kotlin Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Logic On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Logic Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Markdown On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Markdown Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Miscellaneous On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Miscellaneous Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures R On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures R Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Ruby On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Ruby Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Scala On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Scala Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Scope On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Scope Off
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Swift On
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Swift Off

Ligatures - Full Glyphs Set

Berkeley Mono Ligatures Group A+E
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Group B
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Group C
Berkeley Mono Ligatures Group D+F+G

Full v1.009 Release Notes

Ref # Tag Release Notes
RC-104 NEW GLYPH Standard set of ligatures, 158 new glyphs per cut, 632 total
RC-103 OPTICAL Adjust weight, braceleft and braceright, italics cut [U+007B] [U+007D]
RC-102 BUG Fix bug in stylistic set name for 7 digit, add missing ss06, italics cut [U+0037]
RC-101 BUG Dekink and harmonize curve, asciitilde, italics cut [U+007E]
RC-100 BUG Adjust right side-bearing, at symbol, italics bold cut [U+0040]
RC-099 BUG Fix an incline alignment issue, braces, italics cut [U+007B] [U+007D]
RC-098 BUG Fix alignment issues in numbersign, italics cut [U+0023]
RC-097 OPTICAL Fix horizontal alignment, harmonize curvature, parenthesis, italics [U+0028][U+0029]
RC-096 OPTICAL Harmonize curvature, question mark, italics [U+003F]
RC-095 BUG Make ellipses consistent in size between regular and italics cut [U+2026]
RC-094 BUG Fix punctuation misalignments in Italics cut
RC-093 BUG Fix side bearings and reset incline by 2.19 degrees, backslash [U+005C]
RC-092 NEW GLYPH Add Thai Baht currency symbol, [ U+0E3F]
RC-091 BUG Fix vertical misalignment, asterisk bold [U+002A]
RC-090 BUG Fix vertical alignment, period center [U+00B7]
RC-089 BUG Match horizontal alignment, bullet symbol bold [U+2022]
RC-088 BUG Fix vertical alignment, semicolon [U+003B]
RC-087 BUG Fix vertical and horizontal alignment, less/greater signs [U+003C] [U+003E]
RC-086 BUG Minor alignment issue, semicolon bold [U+003B]
RC-085 BUG Fix minor misalignment of exclamation mark, [U+0021]
RC-083 OPTICAL Optically adjusted uppercase 'B' angle, italics bold cut [U+0042]
RC-082 BUG Minor fitting adjustment, lowercase 'b' bold, [U+0062]
RC-081 BUG Minor fitting adjustment, lowercase 'a' bold, [U+0061]
RC-080 BUG Adjust side bearings, uppercase 'J' bold [U+004A]
RC-079 BUG Adjust side bearings, uppercase 'B', italics cut [U+0042]
RC-078 OPTICAL Fixed curvature, minor optical adjustment to parentheses, [U+0028] [U+0029]
RC-077 OPTICAL Improved legibility of lowercase 'm', bold cut [U+006D]
RC-076 OPTICAL Improved legibility of '%' bold sign [U+0025]
RC-075 BUG Fixed weight distribution, uppercase 'V' bold [U+0056]
RC-074 BUG Fixed weight distribution, uppercase 'A' bold [U+0041]
RC-073 OPTICAL Minor optical adjustment, uppercase 'G' [U+0047]
RC-072 OPTICAL Minor optical adjustment, fixed top bowl tangent point 'B' [U+0042]
RC-070 NEW GLYPH Add logical symbols [U+2227] [U+2228]

Chicago Corporate Typeface

Chicago Corporate Typeface Specimen

Chicago Corporate was exclusively commissioned for us and by us. Developed with copious amounts of burnt Folgers coffee in the dull beige offices of Berkeley Graphics, it's corporate. It's official. It's proprietary and it is enterprise grade.

Named after the city of Chicago for its 'corporate-ness', it dreams of annual reports and revels in business jargon. It never misses a conference call and looks forward to hanging out at the water cooler.

It's business in the front. Business in the back.

Chicago Corporate Typeface Specimen

Chicago Corporate is the lovechild of industrial typefaces such as Clarendon and Eurostile that dominated the corporate identities of mid-century German, Japanese and American machine tools companies. It's the typeface of choice for companies that manufactured ball bearings, chain links, gussets, transmission belts, o-rings, standard fasteners, and other badass things. From Sennheiser to Starrett, from Bridgeport to Toshiba; extra-bold hefty typeface variants were used in logomarks that endured for decades. Chicago Corporate is the typeface of choice for those who demand robustness, excellence, straightforwardness and longevity. It doesn't squeal or chime. Chicago Corporate makes an assuring "thunk" sound when struct with a ballpeen hammer.

Bulletin BT-002

Chicago Corporate Typeface conveys officialdom and propriety like nothing else.

It is designed by a Mechanical Engineer precisely for Berkeley Graphics logotype, and we're quite proud of it. Unless you're Bunn® coffee corporation, Avery® stationery company, or Herman Miller®, Chicago Corporate is not for sale to just anyone. Exceptions will be made for clients that show an extreme sense of corporate kitsch and a flair for excellence. If ^\w+([^aeiou]r|ly)$ matches your company name or if it has an open-office plan, you're not eligible. While we're half-joking, we'll make exceptions in special circumstances; please send a RFQ if you're interested in licensing information. Ideally, we'd like to keep it to ourselves.

Bulletin BT-002

The Berkeley Graphics Identity

Berkeley Graphics Studios

With Chicago Corporate typeface running the Corporate kitsch track, on a serious note, we're incrementally converging on a visual identity for Berkeley Graphics. As many of you may have noticed, we've incorporated a color calibration chart and similar visual motifs in our recent graphics design work.

Reticles and Color Calibration charts analyze and quantify vision—they convey our commitment to engineering rigor and analytical approach that lies at the core of our company's ethos.

Drawing inspiration from our industrial machine vision experience in semiconductor manufacturing, reticles and color calibration targets perfectly align with our philosophy and approach towards graphics. We aspire to be a one-of-a-kind design studio, unlike any other, with machines operating, mylar sheets, a server rack, messy desks, oil rags, solder fumes, Chilton manuals, thick reams of graph paper, oscilloscope, PPE, and the noise of RPN calculators. We don't hide fire extinguishers as ugly or unwelcoming; they are prominently displayed in our studio. And soon, posters with calibration charts.

Apollo Color Calibration Chart
Color Calibration Chart, NASA Apollo Program.
Berkeley Graphics Identity

Houston Mono Typeface - Sneak Peek

Space Grade, HiRel, RadHard, MIL-PRF-38535.

If Berkeley Mono is to Led Zeppelin, then Houston Mono is to David Bowie. Unmistakably futuristic, purposefully sophisticated, and strikingly aesthetic. Houston Mono is an extreme exemplification of a robotic exoskeleton fastened over a humanist armature. An optimal human-machine coalescence. A complete congruence of pure rationality, logic, and reason. Houston Mono is an Asimovian typeface for the future.
Houston Mono Sneak Peek

Houston Mono Aesthetics

While we have only publicized a couple of glyphs, the abstract description above provides a basis for Houston Mono's aesthetics and limits the domain space of what's acceptable. It's not going to have french curves, of course. But, on the other hand, science fiction aesthetics exudes cartoonish and incessant obsession for chamfers and bevels, all kinds of frivolous diagonal lines and dysfunctional aesthetics; typefaces that are based on those motifs have problems with legibility and readability. That's unacceptable to us.

Houston Mono needs to deliver as an extremely legible, suitable for programming, typeface. The challenge is in balancing or often inventing new typographic ways to deal with legibility issues. Houston Mono will pull back from the sharp edges of sci-fi aesthetics and stay quite rational, objective and truthful to its purpose — effortlessly write code. Zero glyph is a place to have fun though. We're doing just that (don't worry, there will be an option for standard vanilla flavor zero glyph).

Houston Mono Sneak Peek
Houston Mono Sneak Peek

We'll reveal quite a bit more about Houston Mono's inspiration, form, specimens and its progress in the next bulletin. So, make sure to subscribe!

Customer Appreciation

Berkeley Graphics iTerm Theme

Hey, so we're thinking about kicking off a new program to appreciate our customers. How about a wicked-cool iTerm theme to go along with Berkeley Mono? Do people still use wallpapers? We've got our own version of perceptually uniform coding color palette. A mad-cool color theme for IDEs? Ultra-cool programming language cheatsheets? If you have ideas, please send us an email.

We should call this Customers Are Really Everything (CARE) program with posters typeset in Chicago Corporate. We'll roll out CARE after gathering some feedback.


  • Twitter: We are active on Twitter, follow us at @berkeleygfx for latest updates.
  • Serenity OS: We were thrilled to discover that Andreas Kling vouches for Berkeley Mono. Check out the Serenity OS project; Andreas and his clan is building an operating system from scratch, a monumental undertaking with coding sessions on Youtube. We couldn't be more happy to see Berkeley Mono in the wild, used to build a new operating system no less!
  • Font version numbers: Our fonts are versioned as v[major].[minor] which isn't quite the standard semantic versioning – v[major].[minor].[patch]. Why? It is because of our font production tooling and that's how it started, changing it would create more mess. Not ideal, it bothers us too.
  • Nerd Fonts: We don't mind our customers patching the typeface. We respect your ownership of the typeface. However, Nerd Fonts are put together haphazardly from several difference sources, kind of destroys our typeface's cohesiveness: We do not endorse it, we don't provide support to do this. It is a bad idea despite of its questionable usefulness. They're popular though and if you don't mind breaking the aesthetic uniformity of our typefaces, please go for it.
  • Website updates: We've made a few changes to the website and enhanced its density, usability, and functionality. This site is also a showcase to propel our design philosophy. So, no hamburger menus, and yes to sitemaps. Centered layout is nice. Navigation buttons always visible at the top. We're apathetic to where mainstream design culture is going, our website will generally remain the same for many years to come.

In kindness,
- Neil

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