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Re: [csswg-drafts] [css-fonts-4] [varfont] Specify variable font instances relative to an ”anchor point”

From: Petr van Blokland via GitHub <sysbot+gh@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 27 Sep 2016 22:40:00 +0000
To: public-css-archive@w3.org
Message-ID: <issue_comment.created-250020095-1475015997-sysbot+gh@w3.org>
Making the design and code for the TypeNetwork.com family page we ran 
into the situation where it would be very useful to have relative axis
 specification.
An example is here:
https://store.typenetwork.com/foundry/fontbureau/series/benton-sans?family=benton-sans&layout=overview
This is still based on instance font styles of course, but the 
construction behind the page is already prepared for variations. We 
now solved the necessary responsive point-sizes by Javascript, but it 
would be much easier to specify CSS relative to the current value. 
E.g.

font-weight: +42; 
font-width: -85;

adding 42 to whatever the weight is at that moment, and subtracting 85
 from the current width axis value. As the "C" in CSS indicates the 
cascading nature of all values, making them as relative 1.2em is a 
logical next step.
Apart from the exact CSS syntax, the same would apply for every axis 
available in the variation font.

Calculation also would be nice, as it could solve legitimate 
typographic requests like 
"bolder by 40% of the distance between the current value and the 
boldest extreme of the weight axis". This would solve the current 
problem of not knowing what "bold" means if the "normal" of a text is 
already selected as "Semibold".

Other use cases:
"make the text fit a specified box width by trying within a -5% to +5%
 of width axis change, otherwise go back to 100% width axis and make 2
 lines" (not to mentioning the need for hyphenation, which brings an 
entire new typographic issue to the table).

"make automatic small caps by a specific combination of x/y 
independent scale and x/y independent interpolation" (saving much 
glyph-data this way, most existing small cap designs can be specified 
this way. The same applies for superior and inferior numbers). But 
this needs scaling and interpolation relative to the current font 
size.

One of the current proposed standard axes is optical size. It is not 
clear yet how this value connects to the font-size or screen pixels. 
We cannot trust the OS to decide which [opsz] value to use, because it
 does not know the viewing distance. And the CSS-developer does not 
know device-pixels.



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Received on Tuesday, 27 September 2016 22:40:08 UTC

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