[XeTeX] Question about emulated font features.

Jonathan Kew jonathan_kew at sil.org
Thu Dec 20 01:00:23 CET 2007

On 19 Dec 2007, at 10:27 pm, Michael B. Trausch wrote:

> On Wed, 2007-12-19 at 21:21 +0000, Jonathan Kew wrote:
>> There is support in XeTeX 0.997 (the development code in Subversion)
>> for "slant" and "extend" pseudo-features; with this version,
>>    \font\sxcharis = "Charis SIL:slant=0.2;extend=1.5" at 12pt
>> will give a slanted, extended version of Charis SIL.
>> If you're running 0.996 (the TeX Live 2007 release version), this
>> was
>> not yet implemented at that time.
> Awesomeness.  Two questions, then:  Is the SVN tree undergoing highly
> active development?

It goes in intermittent bursts, depending on my available time. (And  
patches from others [hint], though at present they pass through my  
hands on the way to the SVN sources.) There have been over 100  
commits since the 0.996 release 10 months ago, varying from minor bug- 
fixes to several major new features.

If you do want to try building from source, note that the usual "./ 
configure && make" is unlikely to work as-is. See the build-xetex  
shell script.

> Also, if I were to use the SVN tree, can it coexist
> with the current install from TeX Live, or would they conflict in some
> way?

The SVN source tree just builds the xetex binary, which then needs to  
be installed into a TeX distribution in order to be usable. (You'd  
also want the latest SVN version of xdvipdfmx to go with it. Building  
that can be a bit tricky; you have to help configure find various  
libraries, etc.) I simply replace the binaries in TeX Live with the  
new versions (and revert if I ever need to try something with the  
older release). I suppose it would be possible to have two parallel  
installations in different top-level directories, but I've never  


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