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Re: Embeddable fonts in Communicator

From: Clive Bruton <Clive@typonaut.demon.co.uk>
Date: Thu, 20 Feb 97 12:29:43 +0000
To: www-font@w3.org
Message-Id: <AF31F438@typonaut.demon.co.uk>
Special thanks to Todd for cross-posting this

>Piracy
>The outline information in the PFR is encrypted to prevent piracy. 

I think I've said this before, it took me 30mins to figure the decryption 
method (that was just thinking time), once I'd figured it I "did" a font in 
10mins, so much for that encryption.

>Hackers
>could conceivably crack the PFR's but they'd have to collect a lot of them
>and do major tweakage in Fontographer before they could assemble a maybe
>complete character set including redoing hinting, character mapping and
>kerning (can you spell get a life?). 

A few copy and pastes and you're there, even if you don't get a full set you're 
going to get 90% of U&lc from a smallish site, the whole set from a large one.

The amount of work is minimal compared to designing and digitising a font from 
scratch.

>Web designers need to recognize
>the highly skilled work and long hours involved in creating quality
>typefaces and support the artists who gain their livelyhood from this work
>by buying type from reputable distributers, type designers and foundries.

I think this is the most telling thing that Andrew says. The fact that he has 
to point it out is scarey enough.

The problem here as I see it is that TrueDoc pays no heed to embedding bits or 
licensing, Bitstream constantly repeat the mantra "and developers you can be 
confident that our technology using a non infringing data type and is 
completely legal", fact is it isn't true.

Ok, it is true in the US, but only if a type design isn't covered by Design 
Patent. It is illegal in many other countries including Canada, Australia, New 
Zealand and most of Europe. Not only that, any foundry could change its 
licensing agreement to specifically exclude conversion to TrueDoc.

If Bitstream could be persuaded to make TrueDoc obey embedding bits and 
licensing hard coded into font formats then I think many of the foundries in 
the world would have no problem with it. As long as they ride roughshod over 
other people's rights then there will be friction.

Though if they did include embedding bit/code support TrueDoc would cease to be 
a solution to anything.

Just for the record, Acrobat, as everyone knows, supports font embedding (and 
has done since version 1.0), but Acrobat supports hard coding in fonts to 
prevent embedding or force subsetting. Currently this will only work with PS 
fonts, there doesn't seem to be a way of coding TT fonts.

TrueDoc "font resources" are no better optimised (size-wise) than 
CFF/Type1c/Type2.

Some will dispute what I have written above, well go read the PDF 
specification, then come back and tell me I'm wrong.

PDF on the web need be no larger than graphically rich HTML or FreeHand 
generated Shockwave vector art (embedded PDF has the advantage over embedded 
vector based Shockwave in that it actually prints, something Shockwave won't 
do, at least on my system).


-- Clive
Received on Thursday, 20 February 1997 08:01:53 GMT

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