Re: Single Unicode Font

From: G. Adam Stanislav (
Date: Thu May 24 2001 - 18:33:04 EDT

At 11:13 24-05-2001 -0700, Michael (michka) Kaplan wrote:
>There is nothing intrinscly wrong with the approach you are taking, but
>TANSTAAFL applies here, and there IS no easy solution. There are indeed
>solutions that will fool others into thinking its easy based on how easy it
>seems to *them*. I doubt that anyone who understands even 1/10 of the
>font/OS issues would consider this to be "easy" though.

I did not say free. I know about TANSTAAFL. :)

By easy, I meant it would make it quite straightforward on applications
programmers, as well as font designers, as well as users (no need for

Naturally, it would take extra effort on the part of system programmers.
But system programmers thrive on challenge. ;)

Actually, the metafont could be nothing but a simple text file with the
following entries:

info = <number> [- <number>] : <font>

In there,
number = hexnumber | decimalnumber | octalnumber
font = font_name (as already used by the OS)

hexnumber = 0x[0-9a-fA-F]*
decimalnumber = [1-9][0-9]+
octalnumber = 0[0-7]*

It could also allow for the '#' sign to mean ignore till the end
of the line (comment). Otherwise, ignore all white space, so <info>
could be spread out on several lines, or just one line.

Each <info> entry would list either a range or an individual code,
followed by the actual font that contains the glyphs.

Anything not found in the metafont definitions would be either
substituted (the OS would have to know the rules, of course), or
displayed as a box or whatever default is use.

Duplicate definitions would override prior definitions.

Very simple to parse, very simple for the user to edit.


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