[ubuntu-art] Re: Re-Bringup: FreeSans as default font?

Denis Jacquerye moyogo at gmail.com
Thu May 4 13:47:00 BST 2006

I opened the following bug report to keep track of what might be wrong
with fonts in Ubuntu

On 5/2/06, Denis Jacquerye <moyogo at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 5/1/06, Mark Shuttleworth <mark at canonical.com> wrote:
> >  Michiel Sikma wrote:
> > To give my opinion: I believe that Bitstream Vera Sans is a very nice font,
> > apart from some small kerning problems. Freesans is a more difficult to read
> > font. As designer, my rationale is the structure of the font itself:
> > Freesans has a smaller so-called "punch width" (which indicates how broad
> > the letter is; larger broadness increases screen font legibility) and also a
> > smaller "x-height" (the height of the lowercase x symbol in a font; the
> > higher, the more legible a font is on a screen). Good screen fonts are
> > Verdana, Bitstream Vera Sans, Lucida Grande, Myriad, Frutiger. I'd prefer
> > seeing Bitstream in future Ubuntu releases, since it's proven itself to be a
> > pretty good font.
> >
> >  It seems we already ship Bitstream Vera Sans. At least, I have it in my
> > reasonably fresh Dapper install. Do we need to do more than ship it?
> > Michael, is there a wiki document anywhere which outlines the font strategy
> > for dapper in terms of what is installed by default, and what is used in
> > Gnome, KDE, Firefox, etc? Together with the configs per language?
> >
> >  Mark
> There's currently 22 fonts packages installed with (x)ubuntu-desktop
> (http://packages.ubuntu.com/dapper/base/ubuntu-desktop):
> * a few large CJK fonts (all CJK or parts), mostly high quality:
> arphic, mincho, baekmuk
> * arabiceyes with _38_ fonts
> * indic fonts: malayam, bengali, gujarati, devanagari, kannada, oriya,
> punjabi, tamil, telegu
> * lao
> * thai
> * latin: bitstream, dejavu (with greek and cyrillic partially hinted
> and unhinted arabic), mgopen
> * greek: dejavu, mgopen
> * cyrillic: dejavu (some characters have Serbian style)
> * pan-unicode: freefont
> kubuntu-desktop also depends on ttf-gentium which is very nice serif
> font for latin/greek/cyrillic.
> edubuntu-desktop does not depend on ttf-arphic-*
> It is arguable whether that many fonts should be installed by default.
> Most of the non Latin script fonts include basic latin characters
> similar to Helvetica, Arial or FreeSans, some to Bitstream Vera fonts
> and others to Times New Roman.
> From a Latin script based point of view it is rather annoying to have
> 100+ fonts with only a few actually different. From another script
> based point of view the same argument is still relevant since many
> fonts are just like the next except for the pertinent script fonts.
> Some packages should be split up, if not all that contain more than
> one typeface.
> Those that should be split up are those that include decorative fonts
> or experimental fonts, i.e. arabeyes and dejavu, maybe others I don't
> know.
> All packages could also be split up so only the bare minimum for each
> script is installed by default, while exta packages are available,
> installed with language support or by the user's choice.
> On the long run font management needs to be improved. The only way to
> have many fonts installed and to be able to cope with it would be to
> have fonts organized by script/language supported and a customizable
> list of favorite fonts across all apps à la file selector. The user
> should also be able to specify what font to use per script/language so
> fonts with more than one script that have hight priority in fontconfig
> don't collide with the user's preference.
> Cheers,
> Denis Moyogo Jacquerye

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