[scribus] Fonts, worthy or not?

Rolf-Werner Eilert eilert-sprachen at t-online.de
Tue Apr 5 08:59:45 CEST 2011

This is an endless topic - how do fonts perform on screen:

Am 04.04.2011 21:28, schrieb JLuc:
> on Le 04/04/2011 20:05, Barry McKenna a écrit :
>> "Hinting" is the task of analyzing each glyph at each and every point
>> size and making sure that each *pixel* is
>> pushed/aligned in exactly the *best* location in the grid of pixels
>> that are available at each of the specific point sizes.

> Well, true, the title fonts on http://openfontlibrary.org/wiki/Main_Page
> do not look nice.
> (I mean the one with css font-family : "Nimbus Sans","Nimbus Sans
> L","FreeSans","Liberation Sans","Dejavu Sans
> Condensed",HelveticaNeue-Light,"Helvetica Neue
> Light",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif
> with font-size: 24px;)
> Both on firefox and chrome, the displayed letters have white pixels
> holes on the border,
> and black pixels leaks on the outside.
> The same font in small size (12px) looks ok.
> 16px is very bad,
> but 20px is quite ok...
> I guess this is what you mean with "bad hinting".

My impression is that this mainly depends on the combination of software 
and hardware used in each case. Do you use Gnome or KDE? What version of 
which distro do you have? How are your screen metrics - is it 4:3, 16:9, 
16:10 and with what resolution on which graphics card, and which driver 
do you use for it?

We've got a number of 4:3 screens here, and they all show the same fonts 
in a slightly different way. Currently we run a Suse 10.3 server which 
serves LTSP 4.2 clients that mainly use KDE 3.5. (This isn't up-to-date 
software, but the hardware (partly) isn't up-to-date, too.) On my laptop 
with a newer distro and newer KDE/Gnome, many fonts look totally 
different. The new server which I am currently building shows the same 
fonts different on the same clients.

And when it comes to printing, you never know in advance what the result 
will be. I guess this is because the output is sent through a lot of 
different parts of software before it reaches the screen or paper :-)

(For instance, in my mailing program Thunderbird I have chosen a couple 
of fonts for displaying the mails. Runs well on THIS server with MY 
screen in MY office. But when I print the mails, kerning is totally 
destroyed SOMETIMES (not for all mails), and I've never found the reason 

So it boils down to... it's not only the fonts' lack of hinting 
information for the software but also the software that interprets the 
information, and Scribus merely makes use of the other parts of software 
AND the fonts offered on each system.



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