Creating a Font "Variant" in Main Type

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Fontazuma
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Creating a Font "Variant" in Main Type

Post by Fontazuma »

Hello Forum Mates,

Although I have been involved with font creation on a small scale for many years (mostly on embedded LCD microcontroller applications), I am new to the world of full-feature font editors and managers such as FontCreator and Main Type. A lot of the terminology is new to me (not so much that of fonts & typography per se, which I know pretty well, rather the way these high end font tools are structured and function). Also, there seems to be an assumed knowledge base, which I'd guess would have been acquired thru the use of prior such font tools.

That said, my question is centered on a task I need to do for a current project. I am not sure if either Font Creator or Main Type can perform this task ( or more correctly, if either provides the tools & processes which will allow ME to perform the this task).

The task seems fairly straight forward to me, however as I am a new user to this category of font tools, I have little idea of what approach to take. Or if the tools were ever intended to perform it. (Yes, I have read the Users Manual for Main Type, and it seems to hint at the functionality I need.)

I want to create a new font, or what I would call a "font variant" in which the alpha characters ( A thru Z ) are replaced with glyphs, or more specifically UniCode symbols such as Greek letters and math symbols (e.g. greater-than-equal, infinity sign, etc.). I must be able to save this font as a standard font file such that other Windows applications will recognize this font file, and be able to import it like any other system font. To be sure, I don't want to re-create these symbols myself as I have to do 100 or more. Instead, I'm thinking I can cut & paste the Unicode symbols from a standard font which contains them and into the A thru Z locations in same or another character map. (I've taken a stab at this in my copy of Main Type. It seems to allow me to copy am individual character in the Character Map to the Clipboard, but I can't paste it into another location in the character map.)

The actual end-application I am using is "GLCD" which is a limited function font editor specifically for LCDs and similar small scale displays. GLCD provides many pixel encoding and mapping options that are generally not required in high-level font editors, but which are vital in embedded micro-controller-based apps. I want to load the font file that I describe above into GLCD, then operate on the Unicode characters which would reside in the A thru Z "positions" of the loaded font's character map. (This is necessary because of limitations in GLCD I need to subvert.)

My questions:
A. Can either Font Creator or Main Type do this? (My preference is for Main Type)
B. What is the name of such a substitution process in the world of font processing?
C. What features or function in FC or MT are applicable to this task?

I am not asking for a step-by-step tutorial. Rather a bit of guidance on how to get started.

I will be much appreciative of any help a forum member can provide. Or guidance to another font tool which can accomplish the task.
Best Regards, Fontazuma
Erwin Denissen
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Re: Creating a Font "Variant" in Main Type

Post by Erwin Denissen »

MainType is a font manager, that allows you to view, search, categorize, and install fonts.

To make fonts you need FontCreator. And yes, it can make the fonts you need. If you intend to use characters from other fonts, do make sure the license allows it.
Erwin Denissen
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Fontazuma
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Location: Pennsyltucky

Re: Creating a Font "Variant" in Main Type

Post by Fontazuma »

Hi Erwin,

Thanks for your speedy response.

I looked at downloading FontCreator to get familiar with it, and watched a few Youtube videos as well. However I was under the impression it cannot run on a Windows 10 machine (which I have). Is it possible to run Font Creator under Windows 10? Do I need an additional program to do so?

Thanks,
Fontazuma
Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Creating a Font "Variant" in Main Type

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala »

It runs fine on Windows 10. If you have 64-bit Windows, download the 64-bit version. Otherwise, there is a 32-bit version.

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My FontsReviews: MainTypeFont CreatorHelpFC13 Pro + MT10.0 @ Win10 2004 build 19041.867
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