[OS X TeX] OS X TeX Font Loading Suggestion

Peter Dyballa Peter_Dyballa at Web.DE
Mon Jul 18 18:36:57 EDT 2011

Am 18.07.2011 um 22:26 schrieb Richard J Benish:

> Having a background in graphic arts and being old enough to remember the days of Macintosh "font management" applications, why not have such a thing for LaTex?

Because LaTeX does not use any fonts!

TeX uses only the metrics of the glyphs found in a font. And it uses one or two different re-encodings of the font's original encoding. Convertors, or output drivers, like dvips, dvipdfm, or pdfTeX with its integrated convertor finally use font files, their re-encodings, and MAP files which map a TeX font name to a real font file on disk. It has become a bit complicated due to the restrictions to seven or eight bits, which makes it necessary to provide sets of files for Latin based scripts (which can have so many different modifiers or accents), Cyrillic based scripts, old and modern Greek, aboriginal scripts, Right-To-Left (RTL) scripts like Arabic or Hebrew, the many Indic scripts, CJK (Chinese Japanese Korean), ...

One single tool might not be able to manage this broad range – and the few specialised TeX clients that can handle RTL or CJK or ...

LuaTeX and XeTeX were developed to use Unicode encoded fonts (OpenType and TrueType) quite directly. They can also use PostScript fonts. XeTeX depends on a font manager or a font service in its host system (but allows direct access of font files somewhere in the file system as well) while LuaTeX first creates a "hash" file of the system's font inventory. This needs to be updated manually due to font changes while XeTeX instantaneously takes profit from sanely administering the system's fonts.



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