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Re: Fonts WG Charter feedback

From: Mikko Rantalainen <mikko.rantalainen@peda.net>
Date: Fri, 03 Jul 2009 12:38:11 +0300
Message-ID: <4A4DD183.6010607@peda.net>
To: www-font@w3.org
Levantovsky, Vladimir wrote:
> On Thursday, July 02, 2009 10:07 AM Mikko Rantalainen wrote:
>> restricting such new compression method to be used with just fonts
>> would be insane.
> 
> Who said anything about restricting new compression methods to fonts? 
> However, I do believe that using the intelligent font compression would
> bring better results (in term of compression efficiency), and modifying
> MTX e.g. to use LZMA compression with the existing pre-processor that
> optimizes font data to remove redundancy could be a killer combination.
> It is feasible that W3C Fonts WG would develop a new technology standard
> that could be used in many other areas as well, where font embedding is
> needed.

The MTX is worth anything only if used with EOT format. Better
compression algorithms can be easily engineered if backwards
compatibility is not important.

As I see it, Monotype should publish the GPL compatible patent license
for MTX really fast or it does not matter if the patent is licensed at
all. The reasons I believe so are

(1) MTX has use with EOT only
(2) As long as MTX has not usable license available for GPL licensed
software Mozilla et all cannot consider using it (and there's a HUGE
difference between promising that such license will come and having such
license!)
(3) If the MTX license is not available fast enough, it may be that
browser vendors converge towards EOT Lite (EOT without root strings and
without compression) and versions of major browsers are distributed with
EOT Lite support
(4) As a result of (3), content author cannot really use EOT with
compression in the future. Even though MTX license would eventually come
available because that would only acquire somewhat smaller font files
for the expense of losing part of the possible user base (not a trade
off that I would consider reasonable).
(5) As a result of (4), if MTX cannot be licensed fast enough to be
included in first release that supports any variant of EOT, it does not
matter at all if it's licensed in the future either because the
compression cannot be used at that time.

Note that even if MTX license is not available, site authors may use
HTTP Accept-Encoding/Content-Encoding headers and gzip or deflate
compression to keep the bandwidth requirements down. I believe that it's
not worth delaying decision to use EOT Lite (without compression) over
EOT Lite (with MTX compression licensed from Monotype). Either Monotype
can license the MTX fast enough or it cannot - web fonts should not be
delayed.

-- 
Mikko


Received on Friday, 3 July 2009 09:38:53 GMT

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