Re: Dotless J with stroke.

From: John Hudson (
Date: Tue Dec 11 2007 - 16:05:32 CST

  • Next message: Kenneth Whistler: "RE: Dotless J with stroke."

    Kent Karlsson wrote:

    > So I would conclude that an esh-like or turned f-like glyph would just
    > be approximants, and not the intended glyph for any font. So please
    > make Latin small letter dotless j with stroke and hook look according
    > to its name...

    But if you look at the IPA alphabet, as published in the IPA Handbook, it is pretty clear
    that there is an expectation -- around which a lot of other assumptions in both design and
    naming are made -- that the j has a descending hook of a kind that corresponds to *all*
    the other descending hooks in the alphabet. That is, the presumed basis of the design is a
    neo-classical or romantic typeface. So if you start with a Latin typeface that does not
    have this kind of descending hook on the j, e.g. a renaissance style typeface, then one is
    going to run into the kind of design issues we're discussing.

    My view is that the descending hook is a normative form of the IPA alphabet, since it is
    such an important and repeated feature of so many IPA letters. This is one of the reasons
    why it is not practical to make an IPA extension of every Latin typeface design: some are
    simply unsuited to the purpose (just as many are, for similar reason, unsuited to
    extension for African languages). This is what happens when a notation system is developed
    around a specific typeface or small set of typefaces, instead of evolving from the way in
    which people make signs using various writing implements within specific cultures and
    cultural moments. If shapes are invented based upon the characteristics of specific type
    styles, there may not be equivalent characteristics in a wider range of styles, and so the
    system starts to fall apart. So my inclination, looking at IPA, is to try as far as
    possible to preserve the integrity of the system, even if this means, for instance,
    providing a alternative glyph for the letter j as used in IPA.

    John Hudson

    Tiro Typeworks
    Gulf Islands, BC
    I'm like that Umberto Eco guy, but without
    the writing.   -- anonymous caller

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