Today's digital font technology allowed the world-renowned typeface designer/calligrapher Hermann Zapf to finally realize a vision he first had more than fifty years ago: creating a typeface that could capture the freedom and liveliness of beautiful handwriting. The basic Zapfino™ font family, released in 1998, consists of four alphabets with many additional stylistic alternates that can be freely mixed together to emulate the variations in handwritten text.In 2003, Herman Zapf completely reworked the Zapfino design, creating Zapfino™ Extra. This large expansion of the Zapfino family was designed in close collaboration with Akira Kobayashi. Zapfino™ Extra includes a cornucopia of new characters. It features exuberant hyper-flourishes, elegant small caps, dozens of ornaments, more alternates and ligatures, index characters, and a very useful bold version, named Zapfino™ Forte.A version of the 1998 Zapfino typeface ships as one of the pre-installed fonts included with Mac OSX. The Mac OSX version's letters are four times larger than the Linotype standard. In order to minimize compatibility problems for Macintosh users, Linotype has created OSX versions of its Zapfino Extra Pro typefaces, which have been enlarged to correlate visually with the Mac OS Zapfino system font. These special Linotype fonts can be distinguished by the letter "X" in their name.Zapfino Extra is an OpenType format font, which is available in two versions. Which version you purchase should depend on which software applications you use the most and what features they support! The Contextual version of Zapfino Extra Pro contains a treasure-trove of extra contextual features. When created in 2004, this was the most advanced OpenType font released to date. By purchasing this version, users of OpenType-supporting applications, such as Adobe InDesign, may access all of the features available in the entire Zapfino family through just two fonts, Zapfino Extra LT Pro (Contextual) and Zapfino Forte LT Pro! Unfortunately, most non-Adobe applications currently do not support the contextual features made possible by recent OpenType developments. Users of Quark XPress and Microsoft Office should instead purchase all of the non-contextual fonts of Zapfino Extra Pro family, in order to access all of the Zapfino Extra family's 1676 glyphs. The Zapfino Extra family's character set supports 48 western and central European languages. Use Zapfino Extra to produce unusual and graceful advertisements, packaging, and invitations. Zapfino Extra is so joyously abundant that it's tempting to over-indulge, so be sure to check out the tips for working well with the possibilities.