Generation Typeface Representations: Revisiting Parametric Fonts

Outline font technology has long been established as the standard way to represent typefaces, allowing characters to be represented independently of print size and resolution. Although outline font technologies are mature and produce results of sufficient quality for professional printing applications, they are inherently in exible, which presents limitations in a number of document engineering applications. In the 1990s, the topic of finding a successor to outline fonts was a hot topic of research. Unfortunately, none of the methods developed at the time were successful in replacing outline font technology and this field of research has since then declined sharply in popularity. In this paper, we revisit a parametric font format developed between 1995 and 2001 by Hu and Hersch, where characters are built up from connected shape components. We extend this representation and use it to synthesize several characters from the Frutiger typeface and alter their weights by setting the relevant parameters. These settings are automatically propagated to the other characters of the font family. To conclude, we provide a discussion on next-generation font technologies in the light of today's Web-centric technologies and suggest applications that could greatly benefit from the use of exible, parametric font representations.

Published in:
ACM 978-1-4503-0231-9/10/09, 181-194
Presented at:
ACM DocEng 2010, Manchester, UK, September 21–24, 2010

 Record created 2016-02-09, last modified 2018-03-17

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