[Fontconfig] Lucida Sans/Grande/Unicode matching confusion

S Page skierpage at gmail.com
Sun Apr 29 17:53:52 PDT 2012

Hello, my first post.

I come across a lot of presentation PDFs using Lucida Sans fonts. I
didn't have the font in Kubuntu 12.04 amd64, but my legal paid-for
Windows Vista partition has a /Windows/Fonts/l_10646.ttf that fc-scan
identifies as family "Lucida Sans Unicode". So risking death by
lawyers I installed this as a personal font to ~/.fonts using the KDE
fontinst Control Module, and now
    %  fc-match "Lucida Sans Unicode"
    l_10646.ttf: "Lucida Sans Unicode" "Normal"

Great... except fontconfig won't use this font for the many documents
and web pages specifying just "Lucida Sans" or the Mac OS X version
"Lucida Grande".  fc-match confirms it still uses
    DejaVuSans.ttf: "DejaVu Sans" "Book"
and indeed DejaVu Sans appears to be the fallback font for them in
Inkscape and Firefox.[**]

The situation where someone has one Lucida Sans font but not the
others is extremely common as there are numerous blog posts discussing
the ordering of these fonts in CSS to get the best results, e.g.
<http://qelix.com/blog/tag/lucida-grande/>. Perhaps fontconfig should
have a default rule supporting this situation? I'm clueless but it
would seem to be some kind of <alias> grouping all three Lucida Sans
into a pseudo-family "variations on Lucida Sans" that says if you've
got one of the fonts, then use it for the other two.  But none of the
existing rules seem to do this, they assume you have one font that can
default for others, e.g. /etc/fonts/conf.avail/30-urw-aliases.conf

[**] Do sans serif fonts all default to DejaVu Sans because
/etc/fonts/conf.avail/60-latin.conf has a prefer section that lists it
                        <family>DejaVu Sans</family>
                        <family>Bitstream Vera Sans</family>

I read the doc in
file:////usr/share/doc/fontconfig/fontconfig-user.html and can't
figure out from it what to do; it doesn't have recipes for things like
this, and it has been found that passive voice is to be avoided.

Thanks greatly for any help.
=S Page

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