Re: Gnome text subsystems

Alan Shutko <> writes:

> Miguel de Icaza <> writes:
> >    I know Owen wants us to use X fonts, but I honestly think that the
> > sooner we can ignore the existance of X fonts, the better.  And if we
> > can fully ignore them, all the better.
> That's what they thought when they ported WP to Unix the first time.
> They were wrong.
> Yes, X's font model is pathetic and definately not up to the task.
> But the solution isn't for every app to ignore it in a different way.
> We should _fix_ it.
> >    Because we wont be able to do any kind of WYSIWYG with X fonts, and
> > hoping that we will do a good enough job at matching this font for
> > printing. 
> If we can get a font server that can serve up outlines as well as work
> as an X font server, you can have both.  And if working with the guy
> who's working on fixes to the rendering system in X, we could have a
> working font model for X, and people using different apps from
> different vendors won't have to install the same font ten different
> times.  Trust me, it gets old very fast.

I agree with this whole mail 100%.

There are three reasonable ways of rendering:

 - Rendering with the existing X font model, because, especially for non-Western
   languages, in many cases, bitmap fonts are all people have.
 - Rendering client side to get high-quality WYSIWYG
 - Fixing the X font model

Trying to pretend to combine these by downloading bitmaps via XFS or something
gets you nowhere.

And we should be working on fixing the X model. Miguel seems to think we
can have GNOME fonts and X will just go away. Sorry, Miguel, but if you
want a frame buffer, X is lousy framebuffer. We need to work with X
on this issue, because:

 - We'll get better results. Client-side rendering is sometimes as efficient
   as server side rendering, and sometimes much worse.

 - There are competent people out there ready to work on the X font problem.
   We shouldn't divide efforts.

 - GNOME is not the world under Linux. Everybody uses non-GNOME programs, and
   everybody will continue to use non-GNOME programs. 


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