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What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:19 am
by ud6
So. I use linux 100%, but print out over a network printer and everyone else uses windows. I am constantly fearful of problems of font compatibility between what I do and what other people see, and indeed what my printer shows. I install tons of fonts, and I have been using Calibri, but for some reason it doesn't seem to be printing out well.. kerning all over the place ... (I often pdf documents that don't need editing so I can be sure they get the document as I see it on my computer). I know fonts is a think that tends to suck more in Linux than in Windows or Mac.. indeed I feel this is an area of focus I think Linux developers really need to work on if there is a desire to capture a larger market (tracking, kerning etc).

Given the problems I've had with Calibri (even when installed) I am thinking of changing to Verdana for these reasons:

1. "Microsoft included Verdana as part of its Windows operating system, and so did Mac. 99% of Windows machines and 96% of Macs have it, so it’s widely compatible" https://www.bigbrandsystem.com/why-i-hate-verdana/
2. It looks relatively modern, readable and pretty to me within linux https://www.64notes.com/design/stop-helvetica-arial/
3. I need it to look good both on screen AND in print (most workers use a screen, and print out the same as a report!)

I guess some people will recommend LaTeX, but I feel I don't have time to learn it and really for the number of reports I need to throw out, I really need very quick production time.

I know some people say Arial is a good all rounder, but it seems ugly; or Georgia, but this looks very old fashioned to me. For you out there, what font do you use in documents - particularly those of you who are writing reports and sharing with windows/mac users and also need to print out? I want something consistent that I can use from now until... forever, ah ah ah :lol:

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:38 am
by Terryphi
It is a matter of personal taste. I prefer DejaVu sans for most purposes.

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:43 am
by Flemur
I feel your pain.

Seriously, I'm not being funny but don't know what to say other than linux font software is bad (freedesktop.org) even without sharing docs and printing them...maybe install windows in virtualbox and make (or convert) your docs-to-be-shared 'n' printed there...

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:58 am
by Pepi
The only real problems I've ever had with Linux is the printing. Windoz does a good job with printing IMHO. I've got so I print out to a PDF file and then print it and I don't have any issues doing this. I think If I upgraded to a newer HP laserjet I would probably have less issues printing. I've never really had any issues with Fonts?

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 2:20 am
by ud6
Flemur wrote:
Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:43 am
I feel your pain.

Seriously, I'm not being funny but don't know what to say other than linux font software is bad (freedesktop.org) even without sharing docs and printing them...maybe install windows in virtualbox and make (or convert) your docs-to-be-shared 'n' printed there...
Yup. For me the improvements in Linux use-ability and software over the last ten years has made it a solid competitor with Windows and Apple but the main thing that still has not been tackled is the fonts. I think most linux users go for functionality, so don't care too much about wobbly windows and spinning cubes, but one aspect of presentation that reflects functionality (because other people read our soft and hard copy documents) is fonts. Nothing is a worse advert for linux than a document printed with awful kerning :cry:

I am very lazy though, so will just try and muddle through until I hopefully we tackle this (I just find working on windows too frustrating now so can't swap back).

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 2:29 am
by ud6
Terryphi wrote:
Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:38 am
It is a matter of personal taste. I prefer DejaVu sans for most purposes.
I like DejaVu sans on screen, but is it compatible with windows and mac? If I send a libreoffice or wps document to someone with windows, will they see a very similar format and presentation? Also, again the kerning on print out seems to be poor (possible I have a printer driver problem).

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 4:57 am
by ud6
Hey all
It seems there was a problem whilst I was messing around with the fonts. I had copied the fonts folder from a Windows 10 partition (Windows/Fonts), renaming it to ms_fonts, placing into my fonts folder in the local directory (.fonts) and rebuilt the font cache

Code: Select all

sudo fc-cache -v -f
. i.e. standard method for using MSfonts on Linux. However I was unaware that the microsoft fonts convert to bit-map below 15pt (see image). Thus it looked absolutely rubbish at my standard 10.5pt font.
Screenshot at 2018-11-07 10-11-13.png
Thus I decided to follow the excellent guidance provided here: https://askubuntu.com/questions/594976/ ... lay-nicely
by creating a .fonts.config text file, but I placed into the home directory (not recommended to put in locations they suggested). With the code they suggested to prevent it being converted into bit-map:

Code: Select all

<!-- disable embedded bitmaps in fonts to fix Calibri, Cambria, etc. -->
<match target="font">
   <edit mode="assign" name="embeddedbitmap"><bool>false</bool></edit>
</match>
This reverted my Calibri to a working (and pretty) format again. Not sure who to get angry with: microsoft or linux... but probably should be myself :lol: :lol:

Anyway, along the way I found installing font-manager

Code: Select all

sudo apt-get install font-manager
was useful to visualise problem, as in the image. Also typecatcher (from software manager) was interesting software to add lots of nice additional fonts.

Of course none of this super-cedes the problems described above - Linux still has problems in getting nice font presentation as discussed previously; but it did help me realise some current problems I had :lol: :lol:

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 7:56 am
by MurphCID
Flemur wrote:
Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:43 am
I feel your pain.

Seriously, I'm not being funny but don't know what to say other than linux font software is bad (freedesktop.org) even without sharing docs and printing them...maybe install windows in virtualbox and make (or convert) your docs-to-be-shared 'n' printed there...
LINUX FONTS ARE UGLY! I have said it before, and will say it again, Linux could use some graphical design love, and better fonts and font scaling.

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 10:45 am
by Flemur
ud6 wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 4:57 am
With the code they suggested to prevent it being converted into bit-map:
That seems to be an issue with 'wine' also, so in my
~/.config/fontconfig/fonts.conf
I have

Code: Select all

<fontconfig>
	<match target="font">
        <edit mode="assign" name="embeddedbitmap"><bool>false</bool></edit>...
Edit: I see it's exactly the same code...but worth knowing for 'wine'!

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 10:51 am
by ud6
Flemur wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 10:45 am
That seems to be an issue with 'wine' also, so in my
~/.config/fontconfig/fonts.conf
I have

Code: Select all

<fontconfig>
	<match target="font">
        <edit mode="assign" name="embeddedbitmap"><bool>false</bool></edit>...
Edit: I see it's exactly the same code...but worth knowing for 'wine'!
Ah ah ah. Bizzare that it does this. Don't see the sense really.

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 10:58 am
by Flemur
MurphCID wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 7:56 am
LINUX FONTS ARE UGLY! I have said it before, and will say it again, Linux could use some graphical design love, and better fonts and font scaling.
Some fundamental linux software is from "freedesktop.org" and it is truly awful, and, judging by the number of posts in this forum, two of their attempted products are the source of continual confusion for a lot of people: fonts and mime associations.

Almost 1,000 files under /etc/fonts and /usr/share/fonts.

Under /usr/share/mime: > 700 files. For file-program associations. It's absolutely amazing.

Re: What the f**t (font)

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 10:59 am
by Flemur
ud6 wrote:
Tue Nov 13, 2018 10:51 am
Ah ah ah. Bizzare that it does this. Don't see the sense really.
freedesktop.org