Re: [dev] [patch] dmenu - support for xft font rendering

From: Ethan Grammatikidis <>
Date: Mon, 6 Sep 2010 01:50:24 +0100

On 3 Sep 2010, at 8:49 pm, Kris Maglione wrote:

> On Fri, Sep 03, 2010 at 08:56:22PM +0200, hiro wrote:
>>> Admittedly, the newer auto-hinters do a decent job of this these
>>> days
>> The freetype autohinter?
>> Perhaps this is outdated, but it looks horrible to me.
> It depends on the font, but I believe it's gotten better since that
> screenshot was taken.

Last I really checked the autohinter had become very good. A few
years ago I actually recompiled freetype to disable the interpreter
because the autohinter produced so much better results for me. I
suspect that was due to my use of free fonts which were unlikely to
have properly-done bytecode, if they had any bytecode at all. Ariel
actually suffered quite badly from the autohinter, much more than
other fonts, which to my mind says "Ariel is a suck-more font." ;)

Sometimes I think there's a lot of things like this in computing.
Someone produces something which works well for most things but which
doesn't work so well for the flagship that area, therefore it has to
be replaced with something which requires more work from everyone
just as the flagship had a lot of work invested into it. Then again,
chances are what I'm saying is quite irrelevant for fonts.

>> Hinting patents have expired and any distribution should now be able
>> to include the proper bytecode interpreter.
> I agree. My point was that the (simple) bytecode interperater is
> not a bad thing. It's just the simplest way for font designers to
> control how vector fonts are rasterized on low-resolution media or
> in very small sizes. The auto-hinted fonts tend to look much less
> like their printed counterparts than the designer hinted fonts.
> Before the bytecode interperater was introduced, the practice was
> to use bitmap fonts for small glyph sizes and low resolution
> displays, even for vector fonts, and I'm glad to see the end of that.
> --
> Kris Maglione
> Don't surrender your loneliness / So quickly. / Let it cut more
> deeply. / Let it ferment and season you / As few human / Or even
> divine ingredients can.
> --Hafez
Received on Mon Sep 06 2010 - 02:50:24 CEST

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