[pdftex] opentype

William Adams wadams at atlis.com
Wed Dec 19 16:25:07 CET 2001

Sadly I can't add anything directly useful to Thierry's informative

I would like to make a couple of observations and offer a
counter-example and suggestions for the future though:

1 - this sort of thing is only getting worse, with Mac OS X offering
nifty new fonts (e.g. Zapfino) in funky new formats (.dfont - data fork
TrueType fonts) with new encodings (the ``zapf'' table documented at
fonts.apple.com) and nifty features (ATSUI, the heir-apparent to

2 - pdfTeX's ability to do contextual character substitution (a la the
URW HZ routine) to pad out a sparse line, or lighten a tight one
indicates that it's got the possibility to make use of OpenType features
(when you're swapping out chars for width, also scan for any contextual
ligatures, etc. which need replacing---this has the advantage of not
mucking with hyphenation, but the disadvantage of not being under user
control (no way to keep it from putting an fl ligature in ``selfless'').
This would allow TeX to take advantage of large character sets without
the fundamental alteration to its architecture otherwise needed.

3 - this sort of thing has been done before---SIL's nifty TeX/GX
implementation. Sadly, Zapfino doesn't benefit from usage therein 'cause
not very many of its 1,285 characters are wired up :(


William Adams, publishing specialist
ATLIS Graphics & Design / 717-731-6707 voice / 717-731-6708 fax
Sphinx of black quartz, judge my vow.

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