Beta test Bitstream Vera fonts available.

Andreas Raab andreas.raab at
Wed Feb 26 09:20:49 UTC 2003

Hi Jim,

> There are no delta hints in Vera: they will not generate good 
> bitmaps at small sizes.  They are intended for use primarily
> anti-aliased as we now do on Linux; antialiased, they do very
> well indeed at small sizes.

Yup, that's what I thought.

> For some samples of where things are at using all open source 
> technology,
> see: and 
>  This is best looked at
> on a flat panel with typical horizontal rgb subpixel order. 
> Most things on those two shots are in one face of Vera or another....

Looks very impressive. In particular the small fonts look not washed out at
all and appear very readable at small sizes.

> There will be some additional work done on hinting over
> the next few weeks. You can see in the waterfall display
> a few characters need some additional TLC, as also you observed...

*Grin* Compared to what I sent these look _perfect_ ;-)

> Xft2 use Freetype for the basic rasterization; but that is
> just the start. Xft2 adjusts the hinting to keep things on
> pixel boundaries much more than Microsoft Cleartype does
> (which appears to at most adjust to subpixel bounadaries);
> we believe this is better, and I think the above shot of
> my desktop bears this out. 

Absolutely agree. The quality is amazing. So Xft2 hacks the hinting?! Sounds
somewhat scary ;-)

> The resulting glyphs are imaged at 3 times the horizontal
> or vertical resolution (depending on flatpanel subpixel order
> and orientation), and the results used to form a glyph which
> is alpha composited to the screen.  This process Keith Packard 
> calls subpixel decimation.  So we end up a bit less faithful to
> the font outlines, but less fuzzy than Cleartype (which is sharper
> than not doing subpixel stuff is in the first place).

How's the quality for non-LCD screens?! Plain old CRTs for example?

  - Andreas

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