[Pkg-fonts-devel] fontconfig author and WOFF

Bobby de Vos bobby_devos at sil.org
Mon Aug 7 20:31:18 UTC 2017

On 2017-08-06 16:07, Jonas Smedegaard wrote:
> Quoting Bobby de Vos (2017-08-06 21:29:36)
>> I talked with Keith Packard, the author of fontconfig while at 
>> DebConf. He thinks the following should be done regarding the issue of 
>> where to place WOFF files.
>> * FreeType should be enhanced to so it can tell fontconfig which fonts
>> are in WOFF containers, and prioritize TrueType before WOFF.
>> * If a Debian package ships a TrueType file, do not place the WOFF file
>> where fontconfig can find it.
>> * Upgrade xdvipdfmx so that it can read a WOFF, strip off the header,
>> and uncompress the TrueType data.
>> This means that there should not be a fontconfig configuration file to
>> exclude WOFFs. He said some font designers may only release WOFF, so
>> WOFF needs to be handled.
>> If a package includes a TrueType (or I would add OpenType file) do not
>> place the WOFF file where fontconfig can find it. He suggested the
>> location /usr/share/sil/<packagename> which I think could be changed to
>> /usr/share/<packagename>/woff which Fabian suggested.
>> So while this might be agreeable to Fabian, I think Jonas would not be
>> pleased, so I merely wish to communicate what Keith and I discussed in
>> person.
> I am indeed not in favor of second step (avoid common font path for 
> WOFF), but not shout loudly if implemented, just grumble in a corner and 
> mention at every future debconf we meet ;-)
> That said - I fail to see the need for first and last steps, if second 
> step is omplemented: Was the plan perhaps to do second step only 
> temporary, and revert when first and last steps was in place?

You are correct in that not all the steps are needed. Only one of the
steps is needed to fix the bug. Keith thought all three should be done

However, the first item (change freetype/fontconfig) might be hard, and
one of the maintainers is not enthusiastic (private email). The third
item is not pleasing to the XeTeX community [1] so that might not get done.

[1] https://www.tug.org/pipermail/xetex/2017-August/027182.html

I don't feel like doing the second item unless there is consensus in
Debian. So I will do the (unlisted) fourth item which is not to ship
WOFF in Debian packages.


Bobby de Vos
/bobby_devos at sil.org/

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