I am working on a project using the Muli font from Google, and after a reinstallation I noticed that Muli-Regular was updated to version 2.001.
I looked at previous documents in the same project, and confirmed the font was Muli version 2.000.
There is not a lot of difference between the two versions, except Muli version 2.000 included ttfautohint information, whereas 2.001 does not, and as a result the documents do look very different - especially because most other fonts in the family are still using the hinted version 2.000.
After doing some research, I realized that the reason why Muli Regular and Semibold were updated is that the postscript name of the fonts changed, so the update does clarify menu classification.
However, the difference between the versions means that I must now deactivate Muli from Adobe Fonts and install it locally in order to have consistent display. In this particular case it is not a huge problem since Muli is free, but I am wondering if the same could possibly happen to a commercial font.
That being said, the version 2.001 to Muli happened in 2016, so it begs the question of why Fonts only recently started using this version (my project files do not go back that far, which means the library update happened sometime in the last year).
Where does Adobe Fonts source its fonts? The Google Fonts page for Muli still contains v.2.000, which means the updated version was sourced from Github. However, Muli 2.100 has since been released, and I find it strange that this was not the version used in the update, considering the timing.
How does Adobe Fonts decide when a new version is pushed to devices? In this case, only two in a family of fourteen were updated, which could cause some further issues besides the visual aspect I am mentioning here (e.g., if a new glyph was added to the font, it may not be available in every weight).
It seems to me that Adobe Fonts should notify users of the updates when they happen (rather than pushing them without notice), and possibly allow users to roll back to a previous version, similar to how Cloud allows us to use previous versions of Adobe products.
We're sorry for the delay in response. Thanks for taking the time and sharing the research about Muli Regular and Semibold. I would like to share Adobe Fonts update flow structure which might answer your questions.
Where do we source fonts?
The most reputable version for Open Source is from Github. If we cannot find the font on Github, we will look for the latest version number, whether it is provisioned through Google, the designer’s own site, or Font Squirrel.
We get commercial fonts directly from the designer.
How do we decide when to update?
For Open Source fonts, we update if we get requests from customers or if there is a new version available with a big new feature – for example supporting a new language or fixing a known bug.
For commercial fonts, we update if the designer asks us to or if we find a bug in the font that we ask the designer to fix.
We do not have a schedule for updating fonts and try not to update them unless the benefits outweigh the inconvenience to our customers. Sometimes we update a family, knowing that it may look slightly different to existing users, but also knowing that we fixed a bug or added a missing glyph that will help a lot of users.
Let me know if you have any further questions. I'll be happy to answer.