Author Archive: Dr. Ken Lunde

AFDKO Workflow Diagrams

One of the most useful bits of feedback that I received from my portion of the June 25, 2012 AFDKO Workshop was that I include workflow diagrams that visually explain how various tools and control files work together. While preparing to present the same material at ATypI Hong Kong 2012 on the afternoon of October 10, 2012, I spent last Friday and this week creating additional presentation slides that include such workflow diagrams.
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URO

The first set of ideographs to be encoded in Unicode (Version 1.1), which are referred to as CJK Unified Ideographs, are also referred to as the URO, which is an abbreviation for Unified Repertoire and Ordering. None of the other extensions are given this label. Extensions A through D have been standardized, and Extension E will soon be standardized. Only Extension A is in the BMP (Basic Multilingual Plane). Extension B and beyond are in Plane 2, which is called the SIP (Supplementary Ideographic Plane). What makes the URO special or unique?
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Details About The New AFDKO Version…

As I wrote earlier today on our sibling blog, Typblography, a new version of AFDKO was release earlier this month. I want to use this opportunity to point out some of the changes and enhancements that affect font developers who work with CID-keyed fonts. The details are buried in the detailed Release Notes that Read Roberts prepared.
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Glyph Corrections Via AFDKO Tools—Redux

As described in the August 24, 2012 article, I am currently updating most of our OpenType Japanese fonts. One aspect of the update is to include the 32 additional IVSes, based on the March 2, 2012 version of the IVD (Ideographic Variation Database), which means that all of the kanji in Adobe-Japan1-6 now have a “plain text” representation. Another aspect of this particular update is to use the latest UTF-32 CMap resources, which include three additional mappings, one of which is U+9FCC that was appended to the URO (Unified Repertoire & Ordering) in Unicode Version 6.1. But, the topic of this article is about fixing a small number of glyphs, and the techniques that I used to do so.
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IMUG = International Multilingual User Group

Founded in 1987 by Yuan Ho and Seth Schneider, IMUG (International Multilingual User Group) has become Silicon Valley’s best user group for all matters related to internationalization, localization, and globalization. Meeting once a month, usually the third Thursday, IMUG meetings include a presentation by a distinguished member of the internationalization, localization, or globalization community. Adobe began hosting IMUG meetings in 2010 for odd-numbered months, and its Globalization Engineering Council serves as the official host. Even-numbered months are hosted by Google.

Regardless of whether you reside in the San Francisco Bay Area, I encourage you to attend IMUG meetings. Those that are hosted by Adobe are broadcasted via Adobe Connect, meaning that attendees need not be on site.

It seems that I have presented for IMUG six times, in 1995 (Adobe Systems’ CID-Keyed Fonts For Large Character Sets), 1999 (Adventures in Multilingual Publishing), 2005 (The Adobe-Japan1-6 Character Collection), 2008 (Ideographic Variation Sequences: Implementation Details), 2010 (Kazuraki: Adobe Systems’ Groundbreaking New Japanese Typeface), and 2011 (The Power of “Plain Text” & the Importance of Meaningful Content).

The next IMUG meeting, which will be hosted at Adobe, will include an intriguing presentation by Microsoft’s Michael Kaplan, which will be about new internationalization features in Windows 8, scheduled to be released on October 26, 2012, which is, by the way, approximately two months before our world ends. Please plan to attend, either in person or via Adobe Connect.

Glyph Corrections Via AFDKO Tools

I spent part of this week staging the data for some minor glyph corrections for our Kozuka Mincho and Kozuka Gothic fonts—and those that are derived from them—and was reminded that the techniques I described in the February 27, 2012 article are incredibly useful and indeed time-saving. These same techniques were also conveyed during the AM session of the June 25, 2012 AFDKO Workshop, as shown is the presentation slide below:

Minor Adobe-Japan1-6 Unicode CMap Resource Update

Many thanks to Nozomu KATŌ (加藤望) for bringing to my attention that the Adobe-Japan1-6 Unicode CMap resources were missing the following mapping:

U+207F → CID+15908

I decided to add this mapping to the following eight Adobe-Japan1-6 Unicode CMap resources this evening:

UniJIS-UTF8-H
UniJIS-UTF16-H
UniJIS-UTF32-H
UniJIS2004-UTF8-H
UniJIS2004-UTF16-H
UniJIS2004-UTF32-H
UniJISX0213-UTF32-H
UniJISX02132004-UTF32-H

The eight updated CMap resources were just posted to the CMap Resources open source project that is hosted at Open @ Adobe, and the details are in the associated forum post.

Enjoy!

To CID Or Not To CID

When developing OpenType/CFF fonts, in particular CJK ones or those with a large number of glyphs, one question that I am often asked by developers is whether it should be name-keyed or CID-keyed. The answer to this question is not simple, though it truly is a binary condition.
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Adobe’s First Open Source Font: Kenten Generic

Hoping not to detract from the attention that Paul Hunt‘s Source Sans Pro, Adobe’s first open source typeface family, deserves, I’d like to use this opportunity to point out that another font, a single typeface design with a very small number of glyphs, was Adobe’s first entry in the open source world, in terms of font offerings. Kenten Generic was released on November 4th, 2010 at the Open @ Adobe portal. It includes only thirteen glyphs—ten of which are functional—that are intended for use in typesetting emphasis marks, which are referred to as kenten (圏点) in Japanese, hence the font’s name. The easiest way to view its glyphs is to download its Unicode-based glyph synopsis.
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O… M… G…

I just spent a few minutes perusing the ATypI Hong Kong 2012 program. OMG. This is a literal dream come true for those interested in East Asian (aka CJK) typographic issues. Never before has this collection of experts gathered in a single location. My only regret is that I am unable to clone myself, because there are concurrent sessions in which I interested, or sessions that are taking place at the same time I am scheduled to present.

Again, if you’re on the fence about attending ATypI Hong Kong 2012, I urge you to attend. Such an opportunity is unlikely to present itself for a long time.

ATypI Hong Kong 2012 Program

For those who are already planning to attend ATypI Hong Kong 2012, or are considering it, the program has just been posted. The Keynote Speakers were announced a small number of weeks ago.

Given that this is the first time that ATypI will take place in East Asia, the number of CJK-related presentations is relatively high, and this should be expected considering its venue. To those who are on the fence about attending, I urge you to attend because ATypI is not likely to take place in East Asia for many more years. It is an opportunity that should not be missed. And, like other conferences, one of the greatest benefits—not listed on the program—is the opportunity for one-on-one interactions with others in this industry.

As a side note, I am very much looking forward to speaking at and attending ATypI Hong Kong 2012, and meeting new and familiar faces while there.

CFR Support in Mac OS X Version 10.8 (Mountain Lion)

On July 25, 2012, Apple released to the world Mac OS X Version 10.8 (aka Mountain Lion). Among the many new features in this latest iteration of Mac OS X is support for CFR objects. For those who are not aware, CFR objects are based on ISO/IEC 14496-28:2012 (Composite Font Representation), and are used to define both composite fonts and fallback fonts. CFR objects effectively break the 64K glyph barrier. Mac OS X Version 10.8 is thus the first implementation that has broken the 64K glyph barrier.
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Worlds Apart

I spent the second half of June in Korea (attending IRG 38) and Japan (to present at the Tokyo AFDKO Workshop), and am now spending the first two weeks of July in Hot Springs, South Dakota, on vacation. These place are worlds apart, in terms of location and cultural differences.

Still, I enjoy traveling to these places. Of course, not much happens in terms of font development in South Dakota, unless some crisis arises that requires my attention. There are many interesting places to visit in this area, such as Mount Rushmore (the photo below was taken in August of last year).

I am enjoying this vacation, but I also look forward to returning to work in about two weeks.

Tokyo AFDKO Workshop (PM Session)

Once again, to those who were able to attend the Tokyo AFDKO Workshop that was held at Morisawa‘s Tokyo office on June 25th, thank you for your participation! Not counting those from Adobe and Morisawa, a total of 21 people attended. (Details about the AM session were covered in the previous article.)

For those who attended, and for those who could not attend, the presentation for Masataka Hattori’s (服部正貴) portion of the workshop is now available for download. Besides demonstrating how to build OpenType/CFF fonts based on the Adobe-Japan1-x and Adobe-Identity-0 ROSes, one of the highlights of Masataka’s presentation was demonstrating how to build a font that includes fully-proportional kana glyphs, based on the proven techniques which were used to develop Kazuraki (かづらき) that are detailed in Adobe Tech Note #5901 (Special-Purpose OpenType Japanese Font Tutorial: Kazuraki).
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Tokyo AFDKO Workshop (AM Session)

To those who were able to attend the Tokyo AFDKO Workshop that was held at Morisawa‘s Tokyo office on June 25th, thank you for your participation (and for enduring my poor Japanese speaking abilities)! I hope that you learned new ways in which particular AFDKO tools can be used to make your CID-keyed font production work (or workflow) more effective and less time-consuming.
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Two AFDKO-related Tool Updates

I spent this evening in Gyeongju, Korea enhancing two AFDKO-related tools, extract-cids.pl and extract-gids.pl.

These tools are tx filters, and simply output the list of CIDs or GIDs in a font. I had been using another tool, mkrange.pl, to turn the list into ranges. One of the enhancements, which is the addition of an “-r” option, makes the mkrange.pl tool no longer necessary. In other words, the following two command lines have the same result:

% extract-cids.pl -r <font>
% extract-cids.pl <font> | mkrange.pl

The extract-cids.pl tool was additionally enhanced with an “-s” option, which outputs the ranges on a single line using a comma separator. This makes the output very convenient in terms of repurposing it, such as copying it, then pasting it into a new command line as the argument of the “-g” option that is supported by many AFDKO tools. Consider the following two command lines and their output:

% extract-cids.pl -r cidfont.ps
/0-/8358
/8720-/9081
/9084-/9353

% extract-cids.pl -r -s cidfont.ps
/0-/8358,/8720-/9081,/9084-/9353

Enjoy!

IRG 38

I am currently in Gyeongju (경주시/慶州市), Republic of Korea (ROK), attending IRG 38. For those who are not aware, the IRG (Ideographic Rapporteur Group) is an ad hoc subcommittee of ISO/IEC JTC1/SC2/WG2 (aka WG2), and is charged with all matters related to CJK Unified Ideographs. In other words, all CJK Unified Ideograph repertoires, the latest being Extension D, are the direct result of work by the IRG. I am attending IRG 38 as the sole US and Unicode delegate, and this is the fifth IRG meeting I have attended. IRG meetings are week-long working meetings, and are held twice per year.
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Traveling Abroad

I don’t travel very often as part of my work at Adobe, but when I do, it is always to East Asia. (I have never been to Europe.) The last time I traveled as part of my job was two years ago, to attend IRG 34 in Nagaoka, Japan.
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Be warned…

For those who signed up to attend the AFDKO Workshop that takes place on the 25th of this month in Tokyo, be warned that I will be conducting my portion, which is from 10AM until noon, in Japanese, or at least in my rendition of Japanese. ☺

Seriously, though, I hope that my Japanese skills, or lack thereof, don’t serve as an impediment for those who attend this workshop. My focus will be to demonstrate how particular AFDKO tools, such as tx, mergeFonts, rotateFont, autohint, and so on, can be used to not only build, but also to directly manipulate CID-keyed fonts. My hope is that I can convey useful information that can serve as inspiration for making font production workflows more efficient and less time-consuming.

For those who are attending, note that materials will be provided that will be based on a small subset of Kozuka Gothic Medium. If any attendee wants to use their own font data for this purpose, I suggest that you bring along an Adobe-Japan1-0 or greater OpenType/CFF font or CIDFont resource. I have prepared scripts that will quickly create the same materials, but using a different base font.

Wish me luck in finishing the accompanying presentation, which currently has 24 slides. In Japanese.

I am very much looking forward to meeting everyone who has signed up to attend this workshop!

Preparing for the Tokyo AFDKO Workshop

I am spending most of my time preparing for the Tokyo AFDKO Workshop that Morisawa is hosting at their Tokyo office on the 25th of this month, which is a Monday. At this point, most of the sample data is ready, and I now need to prepare the accompanying presentation slides.

This will be my first opportunity to engage a larger number of font developers, and to convey to them useful tips, tricks, and techniques for several AFDKO tools, particularly tx, mergeFonts, and rotateFont. My portion of the workshop, which will consume the entire morning, will be about building and manipulating CID-keyed fonts, to include controlling the assignment of CIDs (glyphs) to FDArray elements. I will also cover the use of the special-purpose Adobe-Identity-0 ROS. I am very much looking forward to this event, and working directly with many font developers.

Note that this workshop will be conducted in Japanese.