Many typefaces designed with a pen on paper (especially those from the 20th century) were licensed by different foundries, and were later independently digitized by them. Some special characters such as @ or the euro sign, were independently added later. Those “alternate cuts” are different digital versions of basically the same typeface design. They often vary in character set, letter proportions and kerning. Some are published under different names.
Helvetica is one of the most famous and popular typefaces in the world. It lends an air of lucid efficiency to any typographic message with its clean, no-nonsense shapes. The original typeface was called Neue Haas Grotesk, and was designed in 1957 by Max Miedinger for the Haas’sche Schriftgiesserei (Haas Type Foundry) in Switzerland. In 1960 the name was changed to Helvetica (an adaptation of Helvetia, the Latin name for Switzerland).