Phinney SIGNAL! Adobe new FDK and Birthday!

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Chris Lozos's picture
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Phinney SIGNAL! Adobe new FDK and Birthday!
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Thomas mentioned at last month's TypeTech session in New York that Adobe was about a month away from releasing the newest [[Adobe FDK|FDK]] complete with hinting plug-in for FontLab. I was just wondering if a real release date was available now?

What say ye Thomas?

ChrisL

paul d hunt's picture
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Joined: 5 May 2005 - 8:44pm
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i don't think he said there was a hinting plug-in for FontLab, but that FontLab could implement their hinting tools (if they wanted).

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Say it ain't so Paul :-(

ChrisL

William Berkson's picture
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Well, as I understood it you could use the auto-hinting tool--their pride and joy--as a stand alone-utility.

John Hudson's picture
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Joined: 21 Dec 2002 - 11:00am
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The new FDK will include the Adobe PS auto-hinter, which can be run on fonts as a stand-alone utility as part of the FDK, and which FontLab will also be able to incorporate into its own programs. I'm pretty sure FontLab will do this, since it will be an improvement over the current FL autohinting, but will give users the option to manually edit the results, which the autohinter does not by itself.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Thanks John!

ChrisL

paul d hunt's picture
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i thought this would be as good a thread as any to hijack for some birthday wishes to one of the friendliest, most generous, helpful people in type.* here's hoping it's happy!

*gosh he'd be a good boyscout!

Jos Buivenga's picture
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Joined: 19 Nov 2005 - 5:11pm
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I hope this signal will be picked up. Happy birthday Thomas!

paul d hunt's picture
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Joined: 5 May 2005 - 8:44pm
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it can't get much better than family and homemade ice cream!

Chris Lozos's picture
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ChrisL

Blank's picture
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Joined: 25 Sep 2006 - 2:15pm
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Happy birthday!

Viktor Solt-Bittner's picture
Joined: 15 Jul 2006 - 2:26am
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Alles Gute, Thomas!

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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Thanks, all! Birthday was great... good family activities, some fun boardgames, and a fun party with homemade ice cream and cake .

Cheers,

T

Miguel Sousa's picture
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Joined: 18 May 2003 - 8:30pm
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Adobe's Autohinter exists both as a command-line tool and as a FontLab macro. I actually have been using the latter, which I assume will be included in the next release of the [[AFDKO]]. This will happen sometime soon :^)

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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Actually, we could release the FDK any day now, I just need to settle one question about bumping the OS/2 table version string. What this space.

As Miguel has clarified, the auto-hinter is already a FontLab plug-in macro, and a separate command-line tool. It can be run on both Type 1 and OpenType CFF fonts (or in FontLab on any font with PS style outlines, which can then be exported to Type 1 or OT CFF). However, we could hope for tighter integration into FontLab in a future version of the app.

Cheers,

T

david h's picture
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Joined: 19 Aug 2005 - 12:18pm
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Thomas, what about GPOS lookup types 3?

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Thanks Thomas and Miguel! Looking forward to seeing it. Please post the release date when you know it.

ChrisL

Miguel Sousa's picture
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Joined: 18 May 2003 - 8:30pm
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Will do :^)

david h's picture
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Joined: 19 Aug 2005 - 12:18pm
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Let's see... FDK is going to be like VOLT?

Miguel Sousa's picture
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Joined: 18 May 2003 - 8:30pm
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> Let’s see… FDK is going to be like VOLT?

Would you like to? Why? How? What are you looking forward to?

david h's picture
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Joined: 19 Aug 2005 - 12:18pm
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> Would you like to? Why? How? What are you looking forward to?

Since I don't want this thread to turn to FDK vs. VOLT (there was a thread that started with negative attitude toward MS) - and in order to keep it clean, let us talk about FDK (& FontLab.)

If FDK can support the OpenType features that FL can't handle - that will be great.

I don't know what stage FDK is in, but if it were up to me - to add these features and wait even 6 months - then add & wait.

But since I'm not behind the Adobe curtains I don't know what Adobe is up to. However, since FDK isn't like any other product by Adobe (e.g. InDesign, Photoshop - that you keep everything secret till the release ) maybe you or Thomas can shed some OpenType light.

Thank you.

Adam Twardoch's picture
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Joined: 3 Dec 2002 - 7:36pm
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> If FDK can support the OpenType features that
> FL can’t handle - that will be great.

FontLab Studio 5 uses exactly the same Adobe code that is in AFDKO 1.6. When AFDKO 2.0 is released, it will take some time until that code is incorporated into FontLab Studio, so in the meantime, AFDKO will have some advantage. However, from what I remember seeing at Read Roberts˚ presentation in The Hague, I don˚t think that AFDKO 2.0 will support any new lookup types.

A.

david h's picture
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Joined: 19 Aug 2005 - 12:18pm
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Thanks Adam.

BTW this is 'offcial' ?

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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That's right: AFDKO 2.0 does not yet add new lookup types. That's in the next big release, some time early next year.

I expect that we will settle the OS/2 version question in the next couple of work days. After that, there may be a delay of up to a week or two before the new FDK bits are actually posted (depends on our web team).

Right now, for most people, I think the FDK is mostly some additional tools, and I don't expect most users will actually build their OT fonts using the FDK. They'll use it for proofing/testing tools, and they'll maybe use some of the scripts and plug-ins.

Regards,

T

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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I should add that when we add more lookup types, we will support *all* lookup types in the FDK.

T

Andreas Seidel's picture
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"I think the FDK is mostly some additional tools, and I don’t expect most users will actually build their OT fonts using the FDK."

Hello Thomas,

but a few people like me compile their fonts with it. So it would be great if the time between each release don't went to long. One of the great features I like is to build and store the font sources splitted into their single parts and to do batch generation.

Which Phyton version will be needed to run the new FDK properly?

--astype.de--

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Thanks Thomas for your clarification. I assume the hinting tool you told us about in New York will be part of the "additional tools".

ChrisL

david h's picture
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Thanks Thomas.

Adam,

What about FL? - "We plan to support these OpenType specifications elements..."

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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The T1/CFF auto-hinter is supplied in the new FDK both as a stand-alone application and as a plug-in for FontLab.

One of the improvements is that it no longer relies on any separate Python installation.

Regards,

T

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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GREAT!!

ChrisL

david h's picture
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T1/CFF auto-hinter - the pros & cons?

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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Pro: This is the auto-hinter Adobe has used for close to two decades now, which we believe is the best auto-hinter available for PostScript style outlines.

Essentially, this is the crown jewels of Adobe font production.

When you have this available to you in a font editor like FontLab, you'll have the option of further tweaking the hints to your heart's content. It's not like you're stuck with the results.

Cons: None that I can think of.

Cheers,

T

Chris Lozos's picture
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Cons: I can't use it right this moment :-)

Bravo to Adobe for releasing it to independent usage and thanks to Thomas for his role in helping font devlopment in all venues.

ChrisL

david h's picture
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Joined: 19 Aug 2005 - 12:18pm
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Thank you Thomas.

Thierry Blancpain's picture
Joined: 15 May 2005 - 4:30am
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is the autohinting with adobe's tool "useable" for, lets say, a free font that should just scale down a bit better than without any custom hinting at all?

im very interested in typedesign, but there's just no way im going to learn that hinting-stuff! :)

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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What's to learn? The whole point of an auto-hinter is that you don't have to learn much of anything.

Adobe's auto-hinter, like FontLab's, does require that you set zones and stems separately. So you use the auto-blue-zones and auto-stems buttons in FontLab, and then use the auto-hinter. Done!

T

Thierry Blancpain's picture
Joined: 15 May 2005 - 4:30am
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whats to learn? even the barest knowledge of hinting! ;)

i know more or less how hinting works (basicly, i think), but if you say "set zones and stems, auto-blue-zones" and so on.. im already baffled.

but i am sorry, i didnt wanna hijack this thread. i will make my homework and then come back if i have questions.

Chris Lozos's picture
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The FontLab manual explains setting zones and stems. There are also pages on the Microsoft and Adobe sites which explain hinting. Google will find you plenty of sources.

ChrisL

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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Sorry, didn't mean to be flippant. Here's the easy option explained:

First make your font. :)

Then go into the Font Info, under "Hinting Settings." On the main panel, click the green diamond to get the automatically calculated alignment zones. Then on the "Standard Stems" panel, click the green diamond to automatically calculate standard stems. Then come back out to the font and select all, and auto-hint the font (either using FontLab's existing auto-hinting, with the F7 key, or using the new plug-in when it's available).

Not too tough, eh wot?

Now, it is still worth learning about hinting, but you don't have to know much about it to make use of it. However, for hinting to work well, you do have to understand enough about type design to have actually used overshoot, etc.

Regards,

T

Adam Twardoch's picture
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Thomas,

Note that FontLab Studio will automatically compute the stems only when you already have hints in the font. So actually, the process is the other way around:

1. Select all glyphs in the Font Window.
2. Hit F7 to autohint all the glyphs (or choose Tools / Hints and Guides / Autohinting).
3. Go to Font Info / Hinting settings, click on Auto zones and then in Standard stems on Auto stems.

That's it.

Best,
Adam

Thierry Blancpain's picture
Joined: 15 May 2005 - 4:30am
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thomas, thanks alot for your answer (and adam, you too for adding information).

i think for the time i've been doing it i know quite a bit about type design, but what do you mean with overshoot? if it means the simple fact that you have to make round shapes (and "peaks" like the A in some faces) go below and above the xheight / baseline to look as big as other characters (H and O as easy examples) i know what you mean if not, please explain, learning new things is always good.

(and please excuse my semi-hijacking of this thread)

Miguel Sousa's picture
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Joined: 18 May 2003 - 8:30pm
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> make round shapes (and “peaks” like the A in some faces) go below and above the xheight / baseline to look as big as other characters (H and O as easy examples)

That exactly what [[overshoot]] means.

Andreas Seidel's picture
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Joined: 8 Mar 2002 - 3:44am
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Thomas,

will the new version accept the manual setting of usWinAscent
and usWinDescent?

This is an important issue and a lack of the current version and hopefully easy to build in.

--astype.de--

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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Yes, the FDK 2.0 will allow manual setting of the usWinAscent and usWinDescent. By default, they will be set according to the spec, which is to match the font BBOX values, but this can be overridden.

T

Thomas W Phinney's picture
Joined: 3 Sep 2002 - 11:00am
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We finally resolved with Microsoft the question of bumping the OS/2 table version number, and the FDK is ready to go. I don't know how long it will take to get onto the web site, however.

We'll post details of the OpenType 1.5 changes to the OS/2 table on Monday, on the OpenType list.

T

Chris Lozos's picture
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Joined: 25 Feb 2004 - 11:00am
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Great news Thomas! THANKS!

ChrisL

Andreas Seidel's picture
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If the download is online, I believe it. :-)

--astype.de--

Altan Orhon's picture
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Joined: 8 Mar 2006 - 4:37pm
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Any news? I'm dying to use the new FDK with a utility I'm writing.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Enquiring minds want to know ;-)

Has there been another snag Thomas and Miguel? Seems like this was expected a few months ago.

ChrisL

Miguel Sousa's picture
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Joined: 18 May 2003 - 8:30pm
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No more snags. I reckon it'll be out really soon. A few things were finally settled and Read Roberts is "wrapping up the package". And I'm glad to say that meanwhile many improvements were made in the tools, so I think it was worth waiting.

Chris Lozos's picture
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Gracias Miguel!

ChrisL