What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

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timza
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What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

Postby timza » Sat Feb 28, 2015 8:46 pm

I like typewriters and clean typewriter looking fonts. I think the Courier New Regular font is a little light, and the Bold is too dark. I found a font named Courier Prime that I like because it is a little ticker than Courier New Regular, and it was created under the SIL Open Font License that allows me to make modifications as a derivative work. Therefore, I have been using my Professional Edition of FontCreator to create a new font with a new name, as a derivative work based on Courier Prime. I have made modifications to some of the characters, changed the look of the punctuation characters, and added some the round and square characters for bullets (for the lists I make for my work).

I am wondering if there are any other characters I need to add. I am wondering if there is some reference standard for what minimum Unicode characters should be included in a Latin font. And I don't mean what are the 2000 most common Unicode characters. The original Courier Prime has 360 characters. 95/95 Basic Latin. 93/96 Latin-1 Supplement. 123/128 Latin Extended-A. 4/208 Latin Extended-B. 8/256 Latin Extended Additional. Maybe these characters cover exactly what I want. But, I want to check. What I mean is what characters would cover most, if not all, Latin based, romance language, based, non-greek, non-russian, non-cyrilic, etc. based alphabets. To cover all or most of the users whose languages are based on the original Latin alphabet.

Thank you,

Tim.

Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sat Feb 28, 2015 8:53 pm

The Letters Database will tell you which characters you need for each language.

The Eastern European Transform script (Tools, Glyph Transformer, Open) will do most of the hard work for you.

Let us know if any characters are missing from that for the language coverage that you need.
Last edited by Bhikkhu Pesala on Fri Apr 24, 2015 3:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Corrected typo
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timza
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Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2014 6:42 pm

Re: What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

Postby timza » Sat Feb 28, 2015 10:16 pm

Hmm. It appears to me for that webpage to help me I would need to go to that page with a list of the languages that I wanted to support in hand. I don't have that list. I am an American who is designing a font who wants to be inclusive to some point with the characters that my font includes.

Hey, maybe the below linked document not only tells me what characters to include, but also shows me how to test my font in Microsoft Word:

http://www.hope.edu/cit/tips/foreigncharacters.pdf

timza
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Re: What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

Postby timza » Sat Feb 28, 2015 10:39 pm

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:The Eastern European Transform script (Tools, Glyph Transformer, Open) will do most of the hard work for you.
Fascinating. I created a new font project. Then applied the Eastern European Transform script to that new project, and ended up with 461 glyphs. Then I did that transformation on the font I am working on, and it added 99 glyphs. Based on glyphs already created. This is good stuff.

Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Mar 01, 2015 7:31 am

The hardest part is deciding which languages you want to support. I add the whole of Latin Extended Additional, Latin Extended-A, and most, but not all, of Latin Extended-B. However, it does make a lot of work to maintain my fonts. There's a Vietnamese script if you want to take that route.
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timza
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Re: What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

Postby timza » Sun Mar 01, 2015 6:35 pm

Bhikkhu, maybe what I was dreaming about has been created and is called the Windows Glyph List 4, or WGL4, which is a guideline for characters that would be used on many computer systems. Right now, this has many symbols that I am not interested in creating and it includes the Cyrillic and Greek character sets that I am not interested in. But, it would be a good goal for some people.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Glyph_List_4

http://forum.high-logic.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&p=24481

http://www.alanwood.net/demos/wgl4.html

And, in FontCreator there is a script to create these glyphs that we can run by going to: Tools > Glyph Transformer > click on the open folder on the right > select "WGL4 Character Set.xml".

Instead of going all the way to WGL4, I ran Eastern European script, and it created several characters that I did not previously have. So, now I will look through the Unicode maps and look for the symbols I want to include, and I think I will be good to go for version 1 of my font.

I appreciate your software, your forum, and your help.

outofstepfontco
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Re: What Unicode Characters to Include for most Latin alphabets

Postby outofstepfontco » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:30 pm

Today I've started looking at pro fonts like Adobe Caslon Pro and Adobe Gothic Std and it's surprising how few glyphs they use.

Caslon pro has only 369 glyphs, with on 5 Latin B, 9 Spacing modifier, no Combining diacritics, and 1 greek / coptic (pi).

Adobe Gothic Std has thousands of glyphs (mostly Hangul), but only 34 Latin-1, 18 Latin A, no Latin B, and 8 Spacing modifiers.

I think getting hung up on Latin-A, B, Greek, Spacing modifiers, and Combining diacrits is preventing us from releasing fonts in a format that is already competitive.
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