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

From: Kris Maglione <>
Date: Sun, 5 Sep 2010 23:02:58 -0400

On Mon, Sep 06, 2010 at 01:50:24AM +0100, Ethan Grammatikidis wrote:
>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." ;)

I still don't think that the auto-hinter is nearly up to par
with designer hinted fonts. For the fonts that I have screen and
print varieties from different foundaries, the versions without
hinting information look considerably worse on-screen (though
better in print) than the auto-hinted varieties. And I'd say
that Ariel is one of the better hinted fonts around these days
(as are most of the Microsoft core fonts). I have Linotype
variants of most several of them, and they all begin to look
blurry beyond ~11pt, whereas the Microsoft variants remain

>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.

I don't think this is the case. The hinting information is
optional on both ends. Foundaries spend a lot of money to
provide it for screen fonts because it makes a difference.
Anyone choosing not to support it doesn't have to. But I'd say
that designer hinted fonts are actually significantly easier to
render than auto-hinted fonts, which means that it only makes it
easier on font designers, not implemenenters.

Kris Maglione
The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly
teaches me to suspect that my own is also.
	--Mark Twain
Received on Mon Sep 06 2010 - 05:02:58 CEST

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