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Re: Freely downloadable font with all ideographs defined in ISO10646?

From: Chris Lilley <chris@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 02:10:16 +0100
Message-ID: <34F4C0F8.20F56CED@w3.org>
To: Sam Sun <ssun@CNRI.Reston.Va.US>
CC: www-font@w3.org
Sam Sun wrote:

> Is there any freely downloadable Unicode font which contains all, or most of
> the ideographs defined in ISO10646? It doesn't have to be freely
> redistributable though.

No (he said confidently)

The glyph samples in the Unicode 2.0 book were put together using a
large number of fonts. If there had been a single font, showing a
consistent design style, for all glyphs I am sure they would have used
it. Even for the unified Han ideographs I think they used more than one
font, and it is most unlikely that this font is freely downloadable. (I
am travelling just now, so can't look at my Unicode 2 book to check).
Then there are the compatibility ideographs and other miscellanea which
most likely used different fonts.

Also, Unicode/ISO10646 define a coded character set, not a glyph
registry; fonts contain glyph representations, not characters.

So a "complete" ideographic font would have Traditional Chinese,
Simplified Chinese, Japanese, and perhaps the old Vietnamese glyph
representations for each ideographic character. And that is without
taking into account basic stylistic variation - Mincho vs Gothic, or
even styles for different historical periods.

Besides, it is not clear that a single font is the best idea - it does
odd things to the maximal bounding box which makes solid set type look a
little loose, and the font would likely take ages to load.

--
Chris
Received on Wednesday, 25 February 1998 23:53:10 UTC

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