[texhax] pdftex and Unicode

Bob Tennent rdtennent at gmail.com
Sun Aug 26 02:06:07 CEST 2018

 >|
>|I have a document that uses just one font, \tt, and contains the string
>|"1/2".
>|The document renders perfectly under pdftex.
>|
>|I would like to change the document so that instead of "1/2", it uses the
>|single Unicode character ½ (VULGAR FRACTION ONE HALF, Unicode character
>|555,
>|0x22b).
>|
>|https://texfaq.org/FAQ-unicode says:
>|
>|> ???Modern??? TeX-alike applications, XeTeX and LuaTeX read their
>|input using
>|> UTF-8 representations of Unicode as standard. They also use TrueType or
>|> OpenType fonts for output; each such font has tables that tell the
>|> application which part(s) of the Unicode space it covers; the tables
>|enable
>|> the engines to decide which font to use for which character (assuming
>|there
>|> is any choice at all).
>|
>|which left me with the impression that nowadays I don't have to struggle
>|with
>|the old 255-glyph limit or any of the concomitant pain of handling
>|Unicode,
>|and all I needed to do was to change the string "1/2" in the TeX
>|source file
>|to "½". But that seems not to be the case: nothing at all displayed at the
>|point where I expected to see the "½" in the resultant PDF file.
>|
>|Here is a stripped-down trivial test.tex source file that shows what
>|I mean:
>|
>|----
>|
>|\tt
>|
>|Line 1: 1/2
>|
>|Line 2: ½
>|
>|\end
>|
>|----
>|
>|No errors are raised by pdftex, but the "½" character is absent in
>|the output.
>|
>|What is the correct way to have pdftex produce the "½" glyph?

Use xelatex.

Bob T.