[HarfBuzz] Unified Text Layout Engine?

Rahul Bhalerao b.rahul.pm at gmail.com
Wed Feb 7 06:30:22 PST 2007

2007/2/2, Rajeev J Sebastian <rajeev.sebastian at gmail.com>:
> The model for some languages are changing as well. It is entirely
> possible that Fallback Rendering will be removed for Malayalam and
> perhaps other scripts or characters of scripts as well. So, the specs
> may change yet again, and quite soon too.

As far my experiance with Indic fonts, and rendering goes, errors dont
lie at one place. Mostly their root cause hides in the specifications that
are being followed(this applies specially to malayalam and oriya). Reasons
I spot for some still alive bugs are:

1. Ambiguous/wrong specification for few indic languages in Microsoft's
OpenType specs(up to XP at least)
2. Adaptation of these standards by Font developers
3. Some mistaken implementations in current rendering engines(specially
4. And finally disagreements within specific language communities regarding
these specs and
    general use of language(most I noted was malayalam).

When you correct few things in renderer regardless the specifications
provided by
Microsoft, few fonts will break, only because they were based on those
And since we don't have clean and really *open* specs, this only adds to the

Thus my suggestion for Indic rendering would be to either wait for Vista's
specs to come out,
or redefine the specs for indic languages involving the communities from all
the languages and
font developers. Use these specs for Linux platform and let the developers
follow these new
standards. Second option would be in my preference.

Maybe this would be a big step, I'm really not sure, but it will avoid any
further problems at least at the
rendering engine level.

Thanks & Regards,
Rahul Bhalerao.
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