Designed by Paw Poulson, the "Bill" typeface uses leetspeak to encrypt messages

Graphic designer Paw Poulsen created a new font, called Bill, inspired by Bill Gates’s hacker past. The no-frills typeface does away with serifs or accents that might over-embellish the intention of its purpose—for it’s not the font’s look as much as its function that makes it special. When typing with Bill, characters change into “leetspeak,” the language and type utilized by hackers, gamers, nerds and typography enthusiasts to encrypt text and messages. Letters replace numbers and vice versa to create glyphs that are still recognizable by the human eye.

In Poulsen’s deft hands Bill transforms type into a new text expression that’s fun to play around with. Aside from the obvious replacements, like 1 for “l” and 3 for “e”, Poulsen also reimagined 4, using the letter “A” and “G” using the number 6, to new effect.

“It was a fun challenge for me to optically match words and letters as natural as possible, within the frame of a neo-grotesque,” Poulsen told Co.Design.

Paw Poulsen

Graphic designer Paw Poulsen created a new font, called Bill, inspired by Bill Gates’s hacker past. The no-frills typeface does away with serifs or accents that might over-embellish the intention of its purpose—for it’s not the font’s look as much as its function that makes it special. When typing with Bill, characters change into “leetspeak,” the language and type utilized by hackers, gamers, nerds and typography enthusiasts to encrypt text and messages. Letters replace numbers and vice versa to create glyphs that are still recognizable by the human eye.