This font promises to help you remember notes and increase productivity

We all know how hard it is to remember important notes and information when you’re studying or working, but Sans Forgetica could be the unexpected solution to your problem.

What makes this new font aid memory more than any other font out there is how it’s deliberately designed to be slightly hard to read. This “desirable difficulty”, created by gaps in letters and a backward slant to each letter, causes the brain to work harder to read the words — thereby causing it to engage with the content in a greater way.

By forcing the brain to spend more effort reading, memory retention is increased. Sans Forgetica’s aim is to help those studying remember information to a greater degree.

Designed in collaboration between RMIT’s school of design and its behavioural business school in Melbourne, this interdisciplinary task force let designers use both design and psychological principles to craft the perfect font. It was then tested by 100 students of RMIT  to find the perfect mix of “desirable difficulty”.

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Victoria Carrington, an education professor at the University of East Anglia focused on digital technologies and cultures, described Sans Forgetica as a “tool designed to help memorise short passages of text rather than as a way to read all text.

“If the new font allows you to focus on information and retain it, that is a good thing. But this alone doesn’t make for good quality learning. Learning and memorising are two different things. Learning requires that different knowledges, information and viewpoints are critically weighed and interpreted.

“The font does not do that for you. So, in my view it’s a tool that may be helpful and useful but it is not the answer to the challenges of learning or developing a critical approach to different sets of information.”

Sans Forgetica is currently available as a text-replacing Chrome extension or a font download file. However, some users are reporting difficulties using the font in Chrome due to text scaling or copy not being translated to Sans Forgetica at all.

Sans Forgetica isn’t the only font out there designed to improve a readers’ experience. While not created for the specific purpose of memory retention, sans-serif fonts such as Arial and Comic Sans are easy to read for dyslexic people, and Dutch-created “swiss cheese” font was designed to dramatically reduce printing costs, thereby helping to save the environment.

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