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The eco font

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Leave it to the Dutch to come up with such a practical yet creative solution. If I ever get around to buying a printer I will definitely give this a try.

The Ecofont saves on printing ink by … well, using less of it. Letters in the freely downloadable typeface contain multiple small circular holes, meaning that each letter requires less ink to be printed. As the designers put it: "After Dutch holey cheese, there now is a Dutch font with holes as well." Quite.

Though rather striking, the typeface is wholly readable (no pun intended) and is, apparently, most effective at nine or 10 point. It's also sans serif, because, of course, the little flourishes on serif fonts will use up more ink when being printed.

Spranq claims that the Ecofont will reduce ink use by up to 20% - not bad for something that was developed over "lots of late hours (and coffee)".

Perhaps the most intriguing thing about the font is the question it raises: why hasn't anybody thought of this before? It appears to be one of those blindingly obvious innovations that simply slipped under the radar all this time.

As it's now widely accepted that printing should be minimised, there seems little reason as to why most homes and workplaces couldn't switch some or all of their printing to the new typeface, thus saving themselves some cash and doing the environment a small favour.

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