[Fontconfig] Tutorial or guidance for using fontconfig

Ed Trager ed.trager at gmail.com
Wed Jan 7 12:26:31 PST 2009

Hi, Robert,

I don't understand *why* you would want to integrate fontconfig into
VTK.  I assume that VTK only really needs access to high-level string
layout functionality, such as that provided by the Pango, Pango+Cairo,
or Pango+FreeType2 libraries.  So why don't you just go one of those
routes and let Pango/FreeType deal with fontconfig under the hood

- Ed Trager

On Wed, Jan 7, 2009 at 11:16 AM, Robert Kerr <rakerr at sandia.gov> wrote:
> Hi all,
> First, let me introduce myself.  My name is Bob Kerr, and I'm
> investigating the possibility of involving fontconfig into VTK.  It seems
> like this would be a good match, and there's some good excitement on the
> vtk side for this.
> Now, I've got fontconfig 2.6.0 installed, and it seems that everything is
> working correctly, as far as I can tell.  But, there doesn't seem to be
> any way to get from where I am to where I want to go.  I firmly believe
> that fontconfig is useful, and viable, and valuable, but I can't find any
> type of documentation or tutorial or guide as to how to put fontconfig
> into my application.  There's the developers' guide, which is just a list
> of functions and a brief description.  There's the users' guide, which
> describe how to add fonts to fontconfig and then use an application that
> uses fontconfig.  There's some slides that Keith has posted (from years
> ago) about the reasons for fontconfig.  But there's nothing out there that
> tells me how to integrate it.
> After some lengthy searching, I've found a few items that make me somewhat
> concerned--requests for help from other people in my position, which have
> gone unanswered, both to this list and in other forums.  I took the
> initiative to email one of those requestors, and they responded that they
> had received no help from the fontconfig community, and had decided that
> fontconfig wasn't important for their application, since it looked to be
> too high of a cost to try to integrate it, since there was no help
> available.
> So, in a perhaps futile gesture, I'm asking once again if there is some
> sort of Newbie Guide to Integrating fontconfig into an Application.  Or,
> failing that, is there an application that uses fontconfig and is
> well-structured, such that I can learn from it?  Or, failing that, is
> there anyone in the fontconfig community that is willing to mentor
> someone?
> I realize that this is something that isn't fun to do--the mentoring of
> new people, but if the goal of fontconfig is to provide a standard
> interface and mechanism for handling fonts across a wide variety of
> platforms and applications, then it behooves the community to provide some
> way to get more people using it, rather than just ignoring requests for
> guidance.
> Thanks in advance for any answers you might be able to provide.
> --
> -bob
> Bad Performance Evaluations: "This employee is depriving a village
> somewhere of an idiot."
> **********************************************************************
> *      Robert Kerr, Member of the Cubit Mesh Generation Team         *
> *       and the Titan Informatics Toolkit Development Team           *
> *      rakerr at sandia.gov          |    PO Box 5800,  MS 0376         *
> *      Phone: (505) 844-8606      |    Sandia National Labs          *
> *      Fax: (505) 284-0140        |  Albuquerque, NM 87185-0376      *
> **********************************************************************
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