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Re: [QUESTION] How to make a font?

From:H. S. Teoh <hsteoh@...>
Date:Friday, June 28, 2002, 16:47
On Fri, Jun 28, 2002 at 10:13:56AM +0200, Christophe Grandsire wrote:
> yet though (the 500-page manual is certainly not foreign to this :)) ). I also > managed to get hold on the Metafont book, so it's an option I will try for my > fonts.
[snip] Well, if you ever want to make Type 1 fonts out of your efforts, you probably *don't* want to start with Metafont. You'd probably prefer to create/scan font outlines and adjust them with other tools, and then convert them to METAFONT (there are utilities to do this). The problem (which is also its advantage, paradoxically) with METAFONT is that it's too powerful -- a font made for METAFONT is in fact, a complete computer program that creates the font given a set of parameters. Since the METAFONT language is quite complex, there aren't any utilities (and nor can there be, in the general case) that can deal with METAFONT and produce any meaningful output in, say, Type 1 format. You *can* hand-convert METAFONT programs into Type 1 by tracing out the curves that it generates, etc., and building the Type 1 font that way. Of course, this is very tedious, and also quite difficult, since Type 1 can't express a lot of nuances that METAFONT can. Plus, it defeats the purpose of automation -- unless you're a professional fontographer, you probably don't need the level of power METAFONT gives you (at least to start with). Outline curves in Type 1 is good enough for most conscripts, anyway, and you can always generate METAFONT programs from them easily. You can then hand-tweak the resulting METAFONT programs should you see the need to. (Of course, you might have to do extra magic with those .tfm files if you want to do ligatures and stuff, which METAFONT handles quite beautifully.) T -- Computer: Don't point at me... you'll leave a mark on the screen!


Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>