Posts in Category "Unicode"

Adobe Clean Han Version 2.001

The recent Source Han Sans Version 2.001 update provided to me an excellent opportunity to bring Adobe Clean Han, Adobe’s corporate Pan-CJK typeface, into alignment. I am pleased to announce that, as of yesterday, the updated Adobe Clean Han fonts are now being served to this blog via Adobe Fonts.

To celebrate this significant update, I decided that it would be appropriate to illustrate—using live text that can be easily copied and repurposed elsewhere—the 68 ideographs that include five separate glyphs, one for each of the five supported regions/languages:

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Simplified Chinese

Adobe Blank VF & Friends

I spent the last couple of weeks developing a Variable Font version of the infamous Adobe Blank, and the open source project, named Adobe Blank VF & Friends, was released yesterday evening. But, before I detail what makes the Variable Font versions special, besides being Variable Fonts, let’s briefly go over the history of Adobe Blank and Adobe Blank 2.

Adobe Blank

First released in 2013 as open source, Adobe Blank simply maps all 1,111,998 Unicode code points to non-spacing and non-marking glyphs. What made the project interesting for me was to find the right balance between the number of glyphs and the size of the 'cmap' table. When mapping over a million code points, this becomes a valid concern. After some experimentation, I found that 2,049 glyphs was the sweet spot that resulted in 'CFF ' and 'cmap' tables of a relatively small size.

Adobe Blank 2

Adobe Blank 2, which was first released in 2015, is a two-glyph version of Adobe Blank that includes a Format 13 (Many-to-one range mappings) 'cmap' subtable that maps all 1,111,998 Unicode code points to GID+1. At the time, there was no convenient way to create a Format 13 subtable, so I used ttx, and supplied the actual hex values of the compiled subtable. The current version of ttx can successfully compile a Format 13 subtable by explicitly specifying all 1,111,998 mappings.

That then brings us to the Variable Font versions…
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Contextual Spacing GPOS Features—Redux

On this date last year, I published the Contextual Spacing GPOS Features article, and this briefer article serves as an update.
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Source Han Sans Version 2.001

The earlier part of this year was spent preparing new and revised glyphs for the Source Han Sans and Google-branded Noto Sans CJK Version 2.001 update, which also involved changing several mappings. The fonts for the former Pan-CJK typeface family were released today, and as usual, the all-inclusive—and highly-recommended—45-font Super OTC (OpenType Collection) is easily downloaded from the latest release page. See the official ReadMe (will download if clicked) for more details about this release. 70 of the Source Han Sans Version 2.001 fonts are also available via Adobe Fonts (formerly Adobe Typekit).
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Adobe-Japan1-7 Published!


Japan announced the name of their new era, 令和 (reiwa), today. This announcement has set several things into motion, one of which is the publishing of the Adobe-Japan1-7 specification that adds CIDs 23058 and 23059 as the respective horizontal and vertical forms of the two-kanji square ligature form that will be encoded as U+32FF SQUARE ERA NAME REIWA in Unicode Version 12.1. Font developers can now reference the Adobe-Japan1-7 specification.
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Four of a Kind: KS X 1001 & KPS 9566

What do U+AE40 김 and U+6A02 樂 have in common? 🤔

I enjoy working with standards.

Interestingly, standards that were published by the Koreas—South Korea (aka ROK) and North Korea (aka DPRK)—include characters that appear more than once.

In the case of South Korea, it is well known that 268 of the 4,888 ideographs (aka hanja) in the KS X 1001 standard are duplicates, which affects ideographs for which there are more than one reading. This, of course, means that there are 4,620 unique ideographs in that standard.

In the case of North Korea, their original KPS 9566 standard that is dated 1997 separately encodes the modern hangul syllables that represent the names of the previous (at the time) and current (again, at the time) leaders.
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A Brief History of Japan’s Era Name Ligatures

In exactly 10 days, Japan is expected to reveal the name of its next era that will begin on 2019-05-01.

This article will cover several important standards or events that are related to the two-kanji square ligature forms of the current era name, the previous three, and the forthcoming one.
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Adobe-Japan1-6 vs Source Han

Prompted by recent activity on Twitter, I assembled a new mapping file that correlates Adobe-Japan1-6 CIDs (aka glyphs) to Source Han ones, but only for the 6,879 characters in the JIS X 0208 standard. Because the Source Han Sans and Source Han Serif glyphs sets are different, they require separate columns in the mapping file. Also, for the 161 kanji in JIS X 0208 that have both JIS90 (aka JIS X 0208-1990) and JIS2004 (aka JIS X 0213:2004) forms, the CIDs that correspond to the JIS2004 forms are indicated, and those for the JIS90 forms are in brackets.
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CMap Resources—Redux

I spent part of last week preparing the Adobe-Japan1-7 character collection specification update, which will be released sometime in early April, shortly after Japan announces the name of their new era name. (Until the update is released next month, Adobe-Japan1-6 is still reflected in the open source project.) The announcement is expected to take place on 2019-04-01, and while this date represents the start of a new fiscal year in Japan, it is an unfortunate choice for elsewhere.

Anyway, while performing said update, I came across a reference to Adobe Tech Note #5094, Adobe CJKV Character Collections and CMaps for CID-Keyed Fonts, which I last updated a dozen years ago. I decided to use this as an opportunity to obsolete yet another Adobe Tech Note by incorporating its meaningful content into the open source CMap Resources project. I did precisely that last week, which involved updating its content in the process.


Source LOCL Test

This is a brief article to draw readers’ attention to my latest test font, which is a 12-font 65,535-glyph OpenType/CFF Collection that is intended to test how well an app or other font-consuming environment supports language tagging for East Asian text, to include the handling of localized strings, such as those for menu names in the 'name' table, and for named Stylistic Set 'GSUB' features.

The Variable Font Collection test fonts that were made available at the beginning of this month serve this purpose to some extent, but they also require an environment that supports not only Variable Fonts (aka OpenType/CFF2 fonts), but also Variable Font Collections (aka OpenType/CFF2 Collections). The main intent of this OpenType/CFF Collection is to remove the Variable Font baggage from the testing requirement. It also includes support for Macao SAR as a third form of Traditional Chinese, which was described in the previous article.

Please visit the open source Source LOCL Test project for more details, or to download the pre-built OpenType/CFF Collection binary from the Latest Release page.



Preparing for MSCS—Macao Supplementary Character Set

Macao SAR (SAR stands for Special Administrative Region)—written 澳門特別行政區 or 澳門特區—is in the process of standardizing MSCS (Macao Supplementary Character Set or 澳門增補字符集 in Chinese), which is character set standard that is designed as a supplement to HKSCS (Hong Kong Supplementary Character Set), and by extension, as a supplement to Big Five. One reliable source told me that MSCS can be described as HKSCS plus approximately 150 additional characters.
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Variable Font Collections

This is a short article that is simply meant to draw developers’ attention to three OpenType/CFF2 Collections (aka Variable Font Collections) that I built this week, which are now available in the open source Variable Font Collection Test project. As stated in the project, the purpose of these Variable Font Collections is to simulate the Source Han and Noto CJK fonts deployed as Variable Fonts, to help make sure that the infrastructure—OSes, apps, layout engines, libraries, and so on—will support them. Remember that it took several years for Microsoft to support OpenType/CFF Collections (OTCs), which finally happened on 2016-08-02. In other words, this is not trivial.
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Source Han Sans Version 2.000 Technical Tidbits

日本語 (Japanese) はこちら

(Everything that is stated in this article applies to the corresponding Google-branded Pan-CJK typeface family, Noto Sans CJK. Likewise, any reference to Source Han Serif also applies to Noto Serif CJK.)

The last time that a new version of the Source Han Sans family, along with the Google-branded version, Noto Sans CJK, was released was in June of 2015 in the form of Version 1.004. I know from personal experience that a lot of planning, preparation, and work took place during the three years that followed, and the end result is Version 2.000 of both Pan-CJK typeface families.

If you’re interested in learning more details about some of the changes, enhancements, and additions that Version 2.000 offers, please continue reading this article.
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Ten Mincho Redux: SVG & Text

日本語 (Japanese) はこちら

Flashback to almost exactly a year ago.

We released Ten Mincho (貂明朝) Version 1.000 during MAX Japan 2017, and I published this marten-laced article that provided technical details about its fonts. Now, a year later, and during MAX Japan 2018, we have released Version 2.003 of this cute and mischievous typeface family. Please continue to read if you have interest in details about the new and updated fonts that are included as part of this Japanese typeface family.
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帰ってきた「貂明朝」:SVG と「テキスト」

English (英語) here

(翻訳:Adobe Type チーム 山本太郎、西村美苗)


貂明朝のバージョン 1.000 をリリースしたのは、昨年の MAX Japan 2017 開催中のことだった。そのフォントの技術的な詳細に関しては、この記事を書いて、おまけに、貂の写真を何枚も貼り付けておいた。さて 1 年後の今、同じく MAX Japan 2018 の開催期間中に、この妖しくも可愛い書体ファミリーのバージョン 2.003 をリリースした。この日本語書体ファミリーに新たに追加されたフォントやその他の改善点について、技術的詳細を知りたい方はこの記事を参照されたい。
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「源ノ角ゴシック」バージョン 2.000 の技術的な特長について

English (英語) here

(翻訳:Adobe Type チーム 山本太郎、西村美苗)

(この記事中の事項はすべて、Google の Pan-CJK 書体ファミリー、Noto Sans CJK にもあてはまる。源ノ明朝に言及している場合には Google の Noto Serif CJK にもあてはまる。)

源ノ角ゴシックファミリーを、Google により製品化されたバージョンである Noto Sans CJK ファミリーも含めて、バージョン 1.004 にアップデートしたのは、2015 年 6 月だった。以来、さまざまな計画を立案し、また膨大な量の準備と作業を積み重ねてきた。その結果、Pan-CJK フォントファミリー:源ノ角ゴシックと Noto Sans CJK のバージョン 2.000 が誕生した。

バージョン 2.000 での変更・改良点の詳細について関心があれば、以下を参照されたい。
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Revisiting “LOCL Test”

Something extraordinary happened today.

This extraordinary event provided to me an opportunity to revisit the open source LOCL Test OpenType/CFF test font that I introduced over two years ago. I improved the language declarations in the 'locl' (Localized Forms) GSUB feature definition, and also made other minor tweaks, two of which can be seen in the image above.

The version of Adobe InDesign CC that was released today during Adobe MAX, Version 14.0, now supports language-tagging for a fifth East Asian language: Traditional Chinese for Hong Kong. This new language-tagging option appears as “Chinese: Hong Kong” in the Character Styles and Paragraph Styles panels, and as the same in the Character panel.

For those who were not aware, OpenType has supported language-tagging for Hong Kong, a flavor of Traditional Chinese, for over 10 years via the three-letter language tag ZHH, which was introduced in Version 1.5 (May 2008) of the OpenType Specification. ZHS is the language tag for Simplified Chinese, and ZHT is the one for Traditional Chinese, but for Taiwan. For Japanese and Korean, JAN and KOR are their language tags, respectively. I am very pleased that Adobe InDesign finally supports all five of these OpenType language tags.

The timing couldn’t have been better…


2018 Unicode Bulldog Award

Out of the blue.

I was sitting near the back of a crowded room, filled with many familiar faces, when the two-day conference proper of IUC42 (42nd Unicode & Internationalization Conference) began promptly at 9AM on September 11, 2018, with Mark Davis, President of Unicode, making the opening statements. When Mark announced the recipient of this year’s Unicode Bulldog Award, it took me by complete surprise when I heard my name called. Wow. What an absolute honor. In fact, I would claim that this is one of the biggest honors of my life, especially given that Unicode now transcends so many aspects of our society. Looking back at the 27 prior recipients of this award, almost all of whom I consider to be friends, I am definitely in good company.

Luckily for this blog’s readership, Rick McGowan managed to capture all of my embarrassing moments in a three-minute video. You can also see the tweets that were published by @unicode and @AdobeType.

For better or worse, the proverbial bar has been raised, in terms of others’ expectations of me. I shall therefore endeavor not to disappoint. #MaximumEffort


“Strange Things Are Afoot at the Circle K” → U+327F ㉿

This week once again proved that one is never too old to learn something new.

My friends at Sandoll Communications (산돌커뮤니케이션) kindly informed me earlier this week that the offical Korean Standards Association (한국표준협회/韓國標準協會) logo, U+327F ㉿ KOREAN STANDARD SYMBOL, which has been encoded in Unicode from the very beginning (Version 1.1), is generic, both in terms of typeface design and weight, and that there is an actual specification for its design. This character is included in Unicode because it was also included in the KS X 1001 (정보 교환용 부호(한글 및 한자)) standard at position 02-62. The very bottom of the specification page on the KSA website includes a link to a ZIP file that contains the image for the KSA logo in two forms: a 592×840-pixel JPEG image and an Adobe Illustrator vector image file.
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About Adobe-Japan1-7 Font Names

日本語 (Japanese) はこちら

The feedback that we received from the previous article on this subject has been extraordinarily valuable. Our proposal to leave the names of Adobe-Japan1-7 subset fonts unchanged met with virtually unanimous agreement, but given the relatively minor nature of the Adobe-Japan1-7 additions, to the tune of only two glyphs, the same naming policy seems to benefit Adobe-Japan1-6 fonts as well.

In other words, fonts that currently support Adobe-Japan1-6 in its entirety can be updated to Adobe-Japan1-7 without changing their names. Of course, the advertised Supplement value as recorded in the 'CFF ' table should reflect 7. The following is a revised version of the table from the previous article on this subject:

Supplement Designator JIS2004-Savvy Designator /CIDFontName & Menu Name Examples
3 Std StdN KozMinStd-Regular, 小塚明朝 Std R
KozMinStdN-Regular, 小塚明朝 StdN R
4 Pro ProN KozMinPro-Regular, 小塚明朝 Pro R
KozMinProN-Regular, 小塚明朝 ProN R
5 Pr5 Pr5N KozMinPr5-Regular, 小塚明朝 Pr5 R
KozMinPr5N-Regular, 小塚明朝 Pr5N R
6 Pr6 Pr6N KozMinPr6-Regular, 小塚明朝 Pr6 R
KozMinPr6N-Regular, 小塚明朝 Pr6N R
7 Pr6 Pr6N KozMinPr6-Regular, 小塚明朝 Pr6 R
KozMinPr6N-Regular, 小塚明朝 Pr6N R

Of course, we still welcome any and all feedback about this font-naming issue.