Add Support for Math Tables

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Keith Harris
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Add Support for Math Tables

Postby Keith Harris » Thu Jul 10, 2014 8:21 am

Put this in the "THEY WANT WHAT" hat. http://mpeg.chiariglione.org/standards/ ... rd-edition
section 6.3.6

Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Jul 10, 2014 10:31 am

I think you will need to be more specific for anyone to know what it is that you want implemented in FontCreator.
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Keith Harris
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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Keith Harris » Thu Jul 10, 2014 3:47 pm

The advanced table 'MATH' used for displaying formulas or equations.

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Re: 'MATH'

Postby William » Fri Jul 11, 2014 10:40 am

I have been having a look at section 6.3.6 of the document.

That looks like being great fun.

I remember back in the 1960s when Monotype brought out their 4-line mathematics system for metal type and I would have just loved to have had a go at that.

There were things like overhanging tangs and recommending using a harder type metal for casting when using them.

Yet, for the MATH table in OpenType here in 2014.

I am wondering how, for the final result of a printed page having a mathematical expression or a mathematical equation printed upon it, who needs to do what.

For example, what would High-Logic need to do, what would a font designer need to do and what would the end user of the font need to do.

Also, what application software would be needed so that the end user could have some software in order to typeset the mathematical expression or mathematical equation?

Do we need to campaign elsewhere about that, such as in the Serif forum?

William Overington

11 July 2014

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Re: 'MATH'

Postby William » Sat Jul 12, 2014 7:28 am

William wrote:I remember back in the 1960s when Monotype brought out their 4-line mathematics system for metal type and I would have just loved to have had a go at that.


I found the following on the web.

http://ultrasparky.org/school/pdf/Rhati ... e_math.pdf

I found it convenient to download a copy and view it offline using Adobe Reader, using

View
Page Display
Single Page View

within Adobe Reader.

Also the following thread.

http://typophile.com/node/71679

William Overington

12 July 2014

Keith Harris
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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Keith Harris » Sat Jul 12, 2014 5:38 pm

Well, FontCreator could implement the 'MATH' table by presenting the editable data in a window. This way one could
edit those fields and see how there formulas are displayed using the fonts glyph's with Office Word. A tweaking process.

The number of fonts using the 'MATH' table is very low. I suspect the reason for this is the lack of knowledge. Given the
the proper tools, a font can be made better.

The previous link for the ISO OpenFont Format is not yet in the OpenType Specification, however, I believe it will be
incorporated soon.

Whats being used now: MATH_Table_Design_Plus_Features_06.doc. See the upload Attachment. Oops that did not work.
"The file is to big, maximum allowed size is 512 KiB". KiB? Anyway the file size is 1088 KB. Compressed 895 KB. How do I post it here?

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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sat Jul 12, 2014 6:33 pm

Keith Harris wrote:"The file is to big, maximum allowed size is 512 KiB". KiB? Anyway the file size is 1088 KB. Compressed 895 KB. How do I post it here?

7-Zip *.7z format might be smaller, but probably not small enough to meet the forum's limit.

Just cut the bloat and save a file with the important bits. My guess is that this is nothing to do with FontCreator. Probably what you need is to write an OpenType script to position glyphs where you want them, but without spending many hours researching the topic I could not be sure.

I was hoping that you had already done that research, and could explain in simple terms what is needed.

FontCreator now supports most OpenType GPOS features for Complex Scripts, and Maths formula probably don't need anything special.
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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Erwin Denissen » Sat Jul 12, 2014 7:34 pm

We know just a little about this Math proposal from Microsoft, but I'm not sure the effort to support it will pay off.
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Keith Harris
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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Keith Harris » Sat Jul 12, 2014 7:59 pm

Hit me with email.

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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Keith Harris » Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:39 pm

GPOS. Not an option. For example, in the v6.0 Unicode block "Mathematical Operators" there are just 255 glyphs. To cover
cover 255 different combinations you would need factorial 255! = 3.350850684 E+504 entries. Or so I think. Now the
MATH table is a mechanism in which a series of glyphs in a formula are formatted for proper display. That my understanding. Hope this helps and does not confuse anyone. If I'm wrong, tell me and I'll shut up.

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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Keith Harris » Sat Jul 12, 2014 11:13 pm

Just a little more for clarity. Abstract conceptualization. That's how my mind works. GPOS: glyph vs glyph. MATH: box vs box. You tell MATH the range of glyphs that can put into the box and the "display engine" will put that glyph in the box. So if I want the capital letter 'A' in a formula superscript positions box, the "display engine" will put 'A' there. MATH manipulates boxes. I think the caveat here is the fonts design of the letter 'A' for small point sizes. No smaller than 12pt. Does this make sense? All of the above is my view of how it is. Constructive comments appreciated, all others go fish.

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Re: 'MATH'

Postby William » Sun Jul 13, 2014 11:59 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:My guess is that this is nothing to do with FontCreator.


Well, recently High-Logic added into FontCreator the facility to add OpenType COLR and CPAL tables to a font being produced using FontCreator. Those tables are for producing colour fonts.

Similarly, High-Logic could, if High-Logic so chooses, add into FontCreator the facility to add an OpenType MATH table to a font being produced using FontCreator.

Whether High-Logic chooses to do that is a decision for High-Logic: my post is to point out the technology situation.

Nevertheless, those of us who think that adding into FontCreator the facility to add an OpenType MATH table to a font being produced using FontCreator is a good idea could continue to discuss the topic in this thread and try to figure out the design of the dialogue panels.

William

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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Jul 13, 2014 1:11 pm

It's not even worth discussing since Erwin already said that it's unlikely to be profitable.

High-Logic, like any business, has to make money to survive.

Use something like OpenOffice's Symbol Generator or a dedicated program like Math Type to create maths symbols.
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Re: 'MATH'

Postby William » Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:49 am

Erwin Denissen wrote:We know just a little about this Math proposal from Microsoft, but I'm not sure the effort to support it will pay off.


Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:It's not even worth discussing since Erwin already said that it's unlikely to be profitable.


That is not what Erwin wrote: that is a paraphrasing that does not necessarily have exactly the same meaning.

http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/defin ... ?q=pay+off

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:High-Logic, like any business, has to make money to survive.


Well, if some of the people reading this thread produce what amounts to a proposed manual for using the MATH feature within FontCreator, complete with illustrations of the dialogue panels, then maybe that would help reduce greatly the cost of implementing the feature.

I often have concerns when advanced features for something are either not available or available only within very expensive products.

So I feel that the goal of having this specialist advanced feature available in FontCreator is worth trying to achieve, so that the feature becomes available to many people not just to people who are very rich or who work for an organization that can afford very expensive products.

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Use something like OpenOffice's Symbol Generator or a dedicated program like Math Type to create maths symbols.


Thank you for the links.

William Overington

14 July 2014

Erwin Denissen
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Re: 'MATH'

Postby Erwin Denissen » Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:20 am

We've added it to our to-do list, but right now we have other things with a higher priority on the list. If more people let us know about the importance of Math support, we likely put it higher on the to-do list.
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