Proper encoding?

BeauW's picture

I want to include Cyrillic and Greek characters in a font I am designing. What encoding should I use? I've been searching for clear answers, but am still confused. My font is a PS flavour .otf

George Thomas's picture

How about using OpenType LatCyrGrk, assuming you are using FontLab Studio?

Thomas Phinney's picture

It also depends on how extensive you want to get with your Cyrillic and Greek support.

Basic Greek, or polytonic?

Basic Cyrillic, or extended Cyrillic?

Heck, one could ask the same thing about your Latin coverage. If you are going to also be doing Greek and Cyrillic, I would think you would *at least* do Adobe Latin 3 (includes Windows Eastern European, Baltic and Turkish codepages). But you can go even further if you like.

A couple of references:



BeauW's picture

Well, I'm not worried about coverage. I have the glyphs I want to include, but they do not show up in the .otf font that I am generating. This is a pretty simple font (all caps) that I am extending (from my own design) as a first step in learning about Cyrillic and Greek alphabets.

I feel right now that what I want to do is set encoding to ISO 8859-1 Latin1 + ISO 8859-5 Cyrillic. I know that doesn't work. But is there a default unicode encoding I can set the font to that will let me support the multiple character sets?

My goal is a font that will work in Illustrator/InDesign.

Theunis de Jong's picture

You don't need to do anything but assigning the correct Unicode values to your characters.

InDesign, Illustrator, and all other type related software worth its salt are oblivious of any of the encodings you mention. The reason is that these "encodings" are meant as a Unicode-to-8 bit table translation. What will happen when you select one of them, is that FontLab will re-order your Unicode characters into the encoding specified, delete the rest (?) and export only the characters in that specific encoding.

Is it required to select an encoding in FontLab? If so, choose something sounding like "Unicode (BMP)".

BeauW's picture

I think this is where I went wrong. Never had the problem before of characters getting cut off when I imported a font file, but I've been playing around with encodings (just to see what characters were included) and seem to have stuck my font inside one... I think it is sorted out now. At least, the Cyrillic is showing up again.

Thanks for all the help here.

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