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Thread: Adobe Open-Sources CFF Rasterizer For FreeType

  1. #11
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    Default What does this mean for Libertine fonts?

    Hi I really like the Linux Libertine fonts ( http://www.linuxlibertine.org/index.php?id=1&L=1 )
    What does this new rasterizer mean for these fonts, can it be used?

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by MageiaFan27 View Post
    I really like the linux libertine fonts.
    What does this new rasterizer mean for these fonts?
    Well since the sourceforge repository where you download the fonts does have OTF versions of them available you should get better font rendering (if Adobe's and Google's claims concerning the superiority of the CFF rasterizer is correct) when the new rasterizer makes it into Freetype, assuming of course that you install the said .otf version instead of the .ttf version.

    On the sourceforge page it would be this package: http://sourceforge.net/projects/linu...2.tgz/download

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by XorEaxEax View Post
    Yes, this rasterizer 'only' supports .otf fonts, however as far as I know pretty much all new fonts, including pretty much all the Google webfonts are available in .otf format.
    When you have absolutely no clue about font formats, check Wikipedia first before posting bullshit here, can you?

    OpenType (.otf) files can host glyphs in either of two formats: TrueType or PostScript CFF.

    The OpenType specification was a collaboration between Microsoft and Adobe and as anybody with half a brain could guess, the Microsoft fonts (Arial, Times New Roman, etc. – i.e. what “many people” encounter) are in TrueType format, just as common Linux fonts (DejaVu, Liberation, KDE’s Oxygen fonts, Google's Droid and Roboto fonts for Android, Ubuntu font,…) are in TrueType format.

    CFF fonts are commonly used by users of InDesign and other Adobe products not used by common people.

    OpenType fonts containing TrueType glyphs can have either an .otf or .ttf file extension. Just because a file is named .otf doesn't mean that there re CFF glyphs inside.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Awesomeness View Post
    CFF fonts are commonly used by users of InDesign and other Adobe products not used by common people.

    OpenType fonts containing TrueType glyphs can have either an .otf or .ttf file extension. Just because a file is named .otf doesn't mean that there re CFF glyphs inside.
    Ah yes, I was under the misconception that .otf font files were using the CFF format, I was wrong. So these CFF format fonts are mainly professional fonts used in print ? Also why provide .otf format fonts if they contain nothing but an embedded truetype font, why not simply provide a .ttf?

    In my defence I was somewhat fooled by a discussion where people using Microsoft Surface tablets (yes, apparently there are some) were wondering why the font rendering there wasn't using ClearType subpixel hinting and someone there said that this was because Microsoft was using Adobe CFF font rasterization for their mobile products, which now sounds unlikely.

  5. #15
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    I took a look at the Linux Libertine font, looking at the sizes for the fonts, the ttf fonts take 7.9mb, where the otf fonts take 5.2mb, so if nothing else the otf font format is more efficient at storing truetype font information.

    So I did a quick Linux Libertine font otf/ttf rendering comparison at two point sizes, at 15 points there was very little difference, some kerning (visible between 'm' and 'n') and a slight rendering difference on the captial 'K', at 14 points however the ttf and otf fonts rendered quite different (using freetype 2.4.11-2 which is the latest shipped with Arch:

    Libertine Display at 15 points (TTF):
    http://img856.imageshack.us/img856/3...splay15ttf.png

    Libertine Display at 15 points (OTF):
    http://img577.imageshack.us/img577/1...splay15otf.png

    Libertine Display at 14 points (TTF):
    http://img28.imageshack.us/img28/379...splay14ttf.png

    Libertine Display at 14 points (OTF):
    http://img809.imageshack.us/img809/4...splay14otf.png

    So atleast freetype renders the same OTF and TTF font different in this case, as to why I can't say.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by XorEaxEax View Post
    Ah yes, I was under the misconception that .otf font files were using the CFF format, I was wrong. So these CFF format fonts are mainly professional fonts used in print ? Also why provide .otf format fonts if they contain nothing but an embedded truetype font, why not simply provide a .ttf?
    OpenType in general – no matter if the internal glyph format is TrueType or CFF – supports very advanced typography features. Just look at the pictures: http://www.linuxlibertine.org/index.php?id=87&L=1

    OpenType is totally awesome! Even if a file has the .ttf file extension, I don't think any font editor even saves in the traditional Microsoft TrueType format any longer by default because even if end-user software may not support all OpenType features, basic OpenType compatibility is standard since 10 or more years (I think it was introduced in Windows 2000).

    And yes, people say that CFF has better rendering in print and TTF has better rendering on screen. Frankly I never noticed a difference under either Windows or OSX but maybe I wasn't looking hard enough…

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by XorEaxEax View Post
    I took a look at the Linux Libertine font, looking at the sizes for the fonts, the ttf fonts take 7.9mb, where the otf fonts take 5.2mb, so if nothing else the otf font format is more efficient at storing truetype font information.
    According to the website both the .ttf files and the .otf files are OpenType but the .otf files contain CFF glyphs as opposed to the .ttf files which are OpenType files with TrueType glyphs.

    I don't have the Linux Libertine fonts installed to open them in a hex editor to check myself and I'm on too slow internet 'till the evening in order to download the font.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Awesomeness View Post
    According to the website both the .ttf files and the .otf files are OpenType but the .otf files contain CFF glyphs as opposed to the .ttf files which are OpenType files with TrueType glyphs.
    Ah, so while I was generally wrong ( not all .otf files contain CFF), in this particular instance it seems I was actually right, the Libertine .otf fonts do contain CFF glyphs and *should* render nicer when freetype gets the CFF rasterizer. See, you didn't have to be so mean to me

    Anyway, knowing that the .otf font uses CFF rather than truetype hinting explains why the Libertine ttf and otf rendered differently, I wonder how freetype currently handles CFF, autohinter?

  9. #19
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    FreeType had its own CFF rasterizer, but Werner welcomed with open arms this release and has it already to go for FreeType 2.4.12 for general consumption.

    For now, they are just testing it amongst the devs to flush out any kerning issues and other spacing issues for fonts.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Driftmeyer View Post
    Intersting observation. I spend a lot of time writing [fiction and technical] and read constantly. I'm not running into many well published TrueType Font works.

    Of course, in a Display Postscript world of NeXT I was spoiled by the quality of display output. Tradeoffs were then made with OS X due to changing the Display engine to Display PDF and how the world became obsessed with the Web and thus cheap TrueType fonts. Yet I imagine a lot of industries will be thrilled to have quality output in the likes of Linux/FreeBSD and not be beholden to either OS X or Windows.

    Fonts are far better quality in OS X, though Freetype is an excellent engine. I'm sure all the crap they've been going through working around legal issues with CFF/TrueType patents is a big sigh of relief. Application developers will be thrilled.

    We will soon once again come into another Internet lull period.
    Assuming http://blogs.adobe.com/typblography/...-truetype.html is correct, it seems as if ttf is actually the more capable format, but that cff is easier to implement on the font designer's side.
    Also, I think pdf is, more or less, a superset of ps so apple's display server shouldn't necessarily be worse off simply b/c of that change, IIUC.
    Lastly, my understanding of the way osx handles fonts is that they let they leave the hardwork to the fonts themselves (which seems like the ttf methodology), so the fonts can end up hanging themselves if the font package is poor.

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