Re: Open-Type Support (was: Greek Prosgegrammeni)

From: Marco Cimarosti (
Date: Wed Nov 22 2000 - 07:33:07 EST

Lukas Pietsch wrote:
> a lot was said in this thread about intelligent rendering
> mechanisms, [...]
> I figure that people are mostly thinking of the technology
> called "Open Type", is that right?

Right, but quite partial. There are several major technologies for rendering
"complex Unicode scripts".

Here are some of the principal ones:

- Open Type itself (see in http:/
The "font-specific intelligence" is in the font itself; the "generic script
intelligence" is in a software component called UniScribe.

- AAT/ATSUI (see in http:/
Most of the "intelligence" is in the font itself, which also includes a
state machine to operate substitution. The behavior of the smart fonts may
be influenced by external user settings.

- Graphite --my favorite, so far-- (see in http:/
Takes a "stupid" TrueType font and merges it with the "intelligence" written
in an ad-hoc description language (GDL), to produce an "intelligent" font
quite similar to AAT/ATSUI. The accent is on extendability and, specially,
in supporting the Private User Area (which is a precious resource for
linguistic research and defining new orthographies).

- Omega (
Built on top of the old and glorious TeX typesetting system. It may becaome
(or already is?) the standard for Unicode in Linux.

- More...
Other projects are ongoing, with a variety of approaches, philosophies,
scopes, applications.

_ Marco

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