De-plaiting nodes

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Julian Griffin
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2015 10:52 am

De-plaiting nodes

Postby Julian Griffin » Thu Jul 23, 2015 9:18 pm


   I have found a way to reduce the work needed after a Transform like 'Bold' has been performed on a set of glyphs.

   This can leave the nodes quite plaited together, which needs to be sorted out. The following steps can greatly simplify this onerous job.

From the Font Overview window:
   :arrow:   Open a Glyph Window,
   :arrow:   Open the Validation Toolbar (F7),
   :arrow:   Enable 'Real-Time' validation,
   :arrow:   Ensure Contour mode is active (P),
   Now ...
   :arrow:   Step through the glyphs (Alt-→) until the Validation Toolbar lists some Problems,
   Then ...
      :arrow:   Select all contours (Ctrl-A),
      :arrow:   From the Edit menu select > Join contours > Union,
      :arrow:   Use the Validation Toolbar, to correct such things as redundant Points. Continue to correct Problems, until all that can be done is done.
      This reduces the work by 90%. Leaving only a few nodes that need further investigation.
Continue to look through the glyphs (Alt-→) for problem, until all Problems are resolved.

If anyone knows of more ways to reduce this time-eating task, I would love to learn it.

Regards Julian.

Bhikkhu Pesala
Top Typographer
Top Typographer
Posts: 6351
Joined: Tue Oct 29, 2002 5:28 am
Location: Seven Kings, London UK

Re: De-plaiting nodes

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sat Jul 25, 2015 2:58 pm

This tip can definitely help in some cases, but it may also do more harm than good. Unfortunately, I don't know of any reliable way to fix intersecting co-ordinates other than zooming in close and moving or deleting nodes to prevent the cross-overs. That can be very time-consuming.

Below are some fairly typical problems that arose after using a bold transform on the Uppercase B in one of my fonts.

First, after the bold transformation, showing a close-up of the intersecting co-ordinates.

Intersecting Coordinates.png
Intersecting Coordinates.png (1.4 KiB) Viewed 1743 times

Second, showing the result of Get Union of Contours

Get Union.png
Get Union.png (1.88 KiB) Viewed 1743 times

If you use this method, it might still save you time, provided you clean up afterwards, but it can also change the shape of the curves in a way that moving a few nodes would not as in this example.
My FontsReviews: MainTypeFont CreatorHelpFC10.1 Pro + MT7.0 @ Win10

Julian Griffin
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2015 10:52 am

Re: De-plaiting nodes

Postby Julian Griffin » Tue Jul 28, 2015 4:44 am

Hello Pesala,

   Yes I agree this must be done with care, and can be very time consuming work.

   I first leant to use FC on a demo version 5.6. I had hoped that is would have been fixed or at least improved in version 9. But it seems not. Let's hope others reply to this thread, to prompt High-Logic to find a better solution to the plaiting clean-up work that can be left by some Transform commands.

Regards Julian.

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