[XeTeX] Reducing ligatures in arabxetex

Jonathan Kew jfkthame at googlemail.com
Sat Feb 18 19:43:49 CET 2012

On 18 Feb 2012, at 18:12, Juan Acevedo wrote:

> Thanks for all the input, everybody.
> Now turning back to arabxetex, I would like to use this specific beautiful Arabic font, Amiri (v.0.101, downloadable here http://www.amirifont.org/, with thanks to Khaled). 
> Trying to overrule with fontspec the default ligatures of the font, I look up its OpenType features, and otfinfo gives me only one line:
> mark	Mark Positioning
> But when I check the Fonts>Typography options in OSX TextEdit, there are two!
> Alternative Stylistic Sets
> Character Alternates

I don't know why otfinfo doesn't show you all the features you would expect, but...

> If I untick Contextual Alternates within Character Alternates, then presto, I obtain the desired effect: to use only mandatory ligatures. To give a visual reference, I am attaching a screen picture where the first line has full ligatures (=Contextual Alternates), and the second only mandatory ligatures.
> Now, I find strange that otfinfo is not showing these other features, but I find unbelievable that fonstspec cannot fiddle with these additional features, so I'm sure one of you will know how to go about it.

...unbelievable though it may be to you, I can assure you that fontspec *cannot* fiddle with those features. The complex-script shaping engines currently used in xetex do not support user control of optional features. Sorry!

The only exception to this would be if the font were using AAT rather than OpenType for shaping/features. But that's not the case with Amiri, I'm sure.


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