[Pkg-fonts-devel] New release: GNU FreeFont

Steve White stevan.white at googlemail.com
Sun Mar 30 19:34:38 UTC 2008


On Sun, Mar 30, 2008 at 9:10 PM, Davide Viti <zinosat at tiscali.it> wrote:
> Hi Steve,
>  On Sun, Mar 30, 2008 at 04:58:15PM +0200, Steve White wrote:
>  > David (et al.)
> >
>  > I am surprised that the fonts in the Debian distro are all built from
>  > source.  Do they all use FontForge, or are they built in other ways?
>  >
>  > But again, what is the rationale for re-building platform-independent
>  > font files in your distribution?  Is it just to test that it really
>  > can be done?
>  >
>  Debian is not just a random collection of (binary) packages picked up
>  here and there!
>  You suggest Debian should ship pre-built binary ttf files, and having a random
>  user who want to hack the fonts go and find out the version of FF he
>  installed on his system can't deal with that... I reckon it'd be a mess.

There is a big difference in nature between an executable machine
binary and a ttf file.

A machine binary may be meant to do a complex set of tasks, but a
human's only hope of really understanding what it does, or changing
what it does, is by looking at the human-written source code it was
made from.  Compliling program source code is a loss of information.

In contrast a TrueType file is a description of how to draw a set of
characters.  It isn't textual but it represents all of its
information, and its format is public, and it can be edited by several
means.  And it is cross-platform.

Like jpeg, png, etc.

You don't insist on building all your jpegs and png files from source
(I think).  Why do you insist on building ttf files?

>  Of course, people can go to the freefont page, download the binary ttfs and
>  install them;
They can even download the FontForge .sfd files, and edit and build them!

> what we're trying to do here is fix things so that no hacks
>  are needed to reproduce things
And I very much appreciate that.  I'm all for it.

>  PS: just for the record, I've rebuilt the latest version of FF on my Debian
>  machine and I can open latest freefont with no problem
Well, yeah.

Good to know somebody else tried it!

More information about the Pkg-fonts-devel mailing list