Windows / font / text futures ...

Michael Meeks michael.meeks at
Mon Mar 7 14:29:29 UTC 2016

Hi Armin,

	Interesting mail; please do CC me on replies =)

On Fri, 2016-03-04 at 11:25 +0100, Armin Le Grand wrote:
> On the danger no-one wants to hear it :-) - Primitives. If all text
> rendering would use them, all text rendering could be handled in
> system-specific renderer implementations.

	If we could cache de-compositions of primitives instead of constantly
re-generating them, I think it'd be great to have a list of glyphs and
positions for a given string - continually re-shaping the same text as
we measure, render, etc. as we currently do seems (to me) particularly
pointless and inefficient - particularly when you have some really
complex text shaper.

> Similar for layout, I have already 'isolated' text layout stuff needed
> for primitive text handling in a class called 'TextLayouterDevice'
> that has a small number of interface method and uses OutputDevice in
> the background. That class can be implemented system-specific or based
> on an external tooling dood on all systems.

	Sure - abstraction is nice; but not having to abstract - by sharing
more of the rendering infrastructure is even more ideal IMHO =)

> Office is mostly a text tool, so from my POV there is no way around
> using the *best* font rendering on every system. Having
> (well-optimized) ClearType on a system and not using it in an office
> application will not be accepted, esp. not when telling 'but that way
> it is better on a system you do not use'.

	Hmm; I'm not so convinced that with today's higher-dpi screens and
better rendering / hinting algorithms there is so much in it. ClearType
is rather (oddly) situation specific too - mostly good for mostly black
text on a mostly white background ;-) Amusingly - I wanted to demo that
so I fired up Office 2016 on Windows 7:

	Not knowingly configured Office at all since I installed it. Notice
that this is indeed a ClearType setup - cf. the Calibri preview in the
widget. If I was a betting man, this would be down to the horrible
complaints that people no doubt make - since copy/pasting eg. formulae
between word & excel these days results in a bitmap - which used to be
complete with false colour but ... no time for a more systematic test.



 michael.meeks at  <><, Pseudo Engineer, itinerant idiot

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