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

From: Uriel <>
Date: Thu, 2 Sep 2010 23:30:18 +0200

On Wed, Sep 1, 2010 at 10:02 PM, pancake <> wrote:
> Current font size support in swk is merely a hack, the plan is to use libdraw, so it will eventually support it. Antialiased fonts are sometimes better for reading.
> I personally use 10x20 font or the fixed one. But certainly..reading the web with courier is not as nice as with verdana.. Typographic nazis tend to be quite extremist in pro to a correct use of fonts, like killing comic sans and so on..

I'm no font nazi, but anyone that uses comicsans should die, very
slowly and painfully.

> I certainly think that having such possibility will be good. I know that font systems are a quite mad, and utf8 is far more complex than just plain ascii or bitmapped fonts. In fact ttf is a virtual machine, and opentype supports as weird things as many different capital letters or combinations of two chars. This is great for typographic ppl, and they tend to defend this position in benefit of ease of reading.

I know nothing about all this crap, but why not just use FreeType to
render the fonts into a bitmap, and ignore the whole retarded
X-font-systems? Or you could just use the *real* libdraw, which
handles bitmap fonts quite nicely (and if you want another font at
another size, you can always generate it).

But that would be too simple and make too much sense, and re-inventing
square wheels is so much more fun!


> On 01/09/2010, at 21:18, Arian Kuschki <> wrote:
>> Excerpts from Ethan Grammatikidis's message of 2010-09-01 19:00:17 +0200:
>>> Connor Lane Smith wrote:
>>>> If someone were to write a simple clean xft patch for libdraw it could
>>>> be useful, perhaps even integrated into mainline.
>>> This may just be my limited perspective, or it may be my upset stomach
>>> talking, but I'm very surprised to see xft seriously suggested in this
>>> mailing list. Xft is (to me) synonymous with the transition of
>>> from something bad but usable into a black box nightmare best left to
>>> distro tools to cope with. Maybe it wasn't so bad for other people,
>>> maybe it got better.
>> I can't comment on the code complexity, but I do wish there was support
>> for proportional fonts and other typographical niceties in
>> terminal/ncurses apps. Not directly related to Xft I guess, but longer
>> texts (email/rss feeds...) in monospace look rather unpleasant. It would
>> be awesome if swk could reconcile the simplicity and efficiency of
>> suckless tools with some basic regard for typography.
>> --
Received on Thu Sep 02 2010 - 23:30:18 CEST

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