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Quest text font

Posted: Wed Sep 29, 2004 5:32 pm
by William
This morning I produced a new version, version 1.90, of my Quest text font. I have just uploaded it to the web.

There is a link through to that page from the following page, in which there are four pdfs which use Quest text.

The two most significant of the four pdfs are as follows.

Previously the Quest text font has been produced using the Softy program. This latest version is produced using Font Creator Program 4.5 starting with a copy of the Softy-produced version 1.89.

I did some tests with the latest version.

The first test was with Word 97 on a Windows 98 PC. I tried Insert | Symbol and noticed that although the result of inserting is the same, the characters being displayed during the selection process are rather larger than previously. Does anyone have any idea why please?

The second test was to produce a pdf using Serif Page Plus 9 and observe that in Adobe Acrobat Viewer 5 the font name was displayed as Questtext as intended.

Quest text continues to be a free download. It is not shareware.

One matter arises though. Could the very fact that it is a free download of itself mean that some graphic designers and printing companies will not use it, in the sense that they like to have licenses for everything that they use and that the absence of a purchasable licence will cause them not to use the font even if they like the design?

William Overington

29 September 2004

Posted: Thu Sep 30, 2004 7:04 am
by William
A particularly interesting feature of the Quest text font is that it has glyphs for many of the precomposed ligatures of the golden ligatures collection of Private Use Area code points for ligatures.

In addition the font also contains various other ligatures which are not documented on the web at this time.

The code point assignments within the range U+E707 to U+E7BF within the Quest text font may be regarded as part of the golden ligatures collection.

The golden ligatures collection is not a standard, it is something which I started in 2002: however, other fontmakers are welcome to use those code point assignments in their own fonts if they choose to do so, if indeed they are implementing precomposed glyphs and if they are choosing to assign them to Private Use Area code points.

William Overington

30 September 2004

Quest text Version 1.92 now available.

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2004 1:00 pm
by William
At 12.43 pm today I uploaded version 1.92 of the Quest text font to the web.

This replaces the previously published version, version 1.90.

Version 1.92 of the Quest text font differs from version 1.90 as follows.

All glyph designs involving Z and z are changed, including accented characters and ligatures in the Private Use Area. This is to produce an improved appearance to the glyphs.

The authoring-time symbol for PINK at U+F3EB decimal 62443 has been redesigned. This is so that it no longer has white space in the right-hand half of the glyph.

Postscript names have been added to the font.

William Overington

20 November 2004

Posted: Tue Dec 07, 2004 7:08 pm
by William
I have uploaded the latest version of the Quest text font to the web. It is version 1.93. It contains a symbol which I recently learned is used in scholarly editions of transcriptions of medieval German charters to indicate that a section of text was expressed using elongated letters in the original document. ... /0002.html

If the password is requested, going to provides the necessary information for guest access to the database.

The font can be obtained from the following page.

The symbol is placed in the Private Use Area at U+E64E, which is decimal 58958.

It is placed just after the characters for transcribing numbers from old German documents.

Quest text is designed for use at 12 point and 18 point particularly.

Eventually, the symbol may become part of the Unicode Standard. However, at present I have assigned it to U+E64E, which is decimal 58958, in the Private Use Area.

Readers who wish to add the symbol into their own fonts are welcome to use that same code point if they so choose, thereby assisting interoperability until such time, if and when, the symbol becomes part of regular Unicode.

William Overington

7 December 2004

Posted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 10:10 am
by William
I was trying out Font Creator 5.0 the other day and looked at my Quest text font, version 1.93.

I noticed that the .notdef glyph was labelled zacute.

I have now published version 1.94 with .notdef properly named and .null and nonmarkingreturn labelled as far as postscript names go, as mentioned in section 4.3.2 of the Font Creator 5.0 manual.

The font has been tested using Word 97 on a Windows 98 PC.

However, if I open the font in Font Creator 5.0 and generate the postscript names, even though they are already there, the name zacute replaces .notdef as the name for the .notdef glyph.

This is puzzling.

It is possibly the case that various problems have arisen because the Quest text font did not start as a Font Creator Program font but is a result of using font data which I had originally produced using the Softy program, the Softy program being intended to produce fonts only for the Windows platform as far as I know, though I may be wrong about that. I have considerable respect and admiration for the Softy program, on which I first learned to make fonts.

I would however like to get the Quest text font correct for both Microsoft Windows and Macintosh platforms and any others for which it could potentially be used and wonder if anyone can advise please on what needs doing so as to get it right.

It seems to work alright on a Windows 98 PC, though maybe this is because the Windows system is reading the font data and producing corrections on the fly whenever it uses the font: I remember reading something once, maybe in the Unicode list, about Windows producing corrected font tables on the fly because it needed to do so because so many fonts available at the time had errors in them.

I am still wondering whether the Quest text font works on a Macintosh computer.

More generally, can one access more that 256 glyphs on a Macintosh computer please?

Also, I have heard of the Linux operating system, though have no knowledge of it, and wonder what sort of fonts are used on Linux systems.

William Overington

22 January 2005

Posted: Tue Jan 25, 2005 5:29 pm
by Erwin Denissen
However, if I open the font in Font Creator 5.0 and generate the postscript names, even though they are already there, the name zacute replaces .notdef as the name for the .notdef glyph.
Your first glyph contains Microsoft Unicode BMP only mappings. Just remove them as they shouldn't be there.

I've also noticed your Macintosh mappings are invalid. To generate correct mappings for this platform, follow these steps:
Select Platform Manager from the Format menu. Select platform Macintosh Roman and press the Delete button. Now in the same window, press the Add button and select Platform Macintosh and Specific Platform Encoding Roman. Also select Copy from Microsoft Unicode BMP only and press the OK button. Again press the OK button to complete the Platform Manager operation. This results in a Macintosh platform with correct mappings, but the naming fields for this platform are still missing. So use the AutoNaming feature to fix that (Select AutoNaming from the Tools menu and complete that wizard).

Now the PostScript names will be generated as expected.

Let us know your results.

Posted: Sat Feb 05, 2005 4:22 pm
by William
> Let us know your results.

I have now adjusted the font as you suggested and have uploaded the new version of the Quest text font to our family webspace. It is version 1.95.

The font can be downloaded from the following web page.

I do not have a Macintosh computer and so have not been able to test the font on that platform.

I did notice that capital ETH and small eth are not mapped in Macintosh Roman and that capital OE and small oe are mapped in Macintosh Roman.

As capital ETH and small eth have code points below 256 in Unicode and capital OE and small oe have code points above 256 in Unicode I am wondering whether the Macintosh Roman mapping is for only 256 code points with a non-Unicode code point mapping: is that the situation please?

I have realized that I now need to process my other fonts which are derived from Softy-produced originals in a similar manner.

Thank you for your help.

William Overington

5 February 2005

Posted: Sat Feb 05, 2005 4:50 pm
by Erwin Denissen
William wrote:As capital ETH and small eth have code points below 256 in Unicode and capital OE and small oe have code points above 256 in Unicode I am wondering whether the Macintosh Roman mapping is for only 256 code points with a non-Unicode code point mapping: is that the situation please?
Macintosh has its own mapping scheme (you can see it when you select Macintosh Platform and press the Select button in the Character to Glyph Index Mappings) and it is mainly there for backwards compatibility. As far as I know nowadays the Macintosh uses Microsoft mappings, to overcome the 255 character limit.

Posted: Mon Mar 07, 2005 7:20 pm
by William
Quest text version 1.96 is now available.

Version 1.96 adds nine new glyphs at U+F2B1 .. U+F2B9 in the Private Use Area.

The glyphs are my design of authoring-time glyphs for the nine items suggested in the following post in the archives of the Unicode mailing list. ... /0182.html

Guest access to the archive is available using the user name and password provided on the following page.

I have encoded the nine glyphs in the order suggested in the posting.

Certainly these authoring-time glyphs are in the Private Use Area yet hopefully they will be useful for experiments in producing Unicode text files using, say, WordPad, so as to demonstrate the concept which is suggested in the post.

Certainly it would be nice if regular Unicode decides to encode such items. If not, maybe these Private Use Area items are "how it is" for use in producing real research documents and archives.

William Overington

7 March 2005

Posted: Sat Mar 12, 2005 4:03 pm
by William
I have now uploaded version 1.97 of the Quest text font to the web.

This continues with the theme of authoring-time glyphs for items which are potentially to be used for recording damage which has happened to the glyph in the original source document or clay tablet which is being transcribed.

The five additional items are as follows.

U+F2B0 * No damage.

U+F2BA * All over damage.
U+F2BB * Restored from parallel passage.

U+F2BE * Start of transcriber's note.
U+F2BF * End of transcriber's note.

The decimal equivalent codes are 62128, 62138, 62139, 62142 and 62143.

The last two items above are my own suggestion, the others are from the continuing discussion in the Unicode mailing list, the archives being publicly accessible.

The No damage item is not intended to be used with every undamaged glyph, only where emphasis is needed, perhaps because some other copy of the original does have a damaged glyph in that original document.


Posted: Mon Mar 14, 2005 6:36 pm
by William
As at 6.15 pm UK time today, Quest text version 1.99 has been available on the web, containing three additional items in addition to those in version 1.97.

These items were suggested to me by an email correspondent.



(#63004 is a superscript lower case d)
(#63005 is a superscript lower case string "gis" with a caron on the s)
(#63006 is a superscript lower case string "ki")

end quote

Version 1.98 of the font has not been published. The glyphs for the newly added characters looked too thin and some parts went wrong at 18 point: I had scaled copies of the full-size letters by 50% and shifted 1024 font units upwards in producing the designs. For version 1.99 I altered the designs of the glyphs so that they come out well, in my opinion, at 12, 18 and 24 point.


Posted: Tue Apr 12, 2005 5:53 pm
by William
I have just uploaded version 2.01 of Quest text to the web. Version 2.00 was not published.

There are no new glyphs added, yet I have now improved the font so that there are now no errors reported at validation.

I have also uploaded updated versions of Quest Chess, Poetical, Chronicle Text, Gothic Splendour and Artistic Text. Quest Chess has one additional glyph so as to support two-colour work in the production of pdf documents, encoded as an @ character, the others have no change to the number of glyphs. All of the fonts now report no errors at validation.

I am wondering whether they all work well on the Macintosh Roman platform. This is because I noticed that they have various characters mapped to the notdef glyph, yet for Quest text I notice that some of the characters mapped to the notdef glyph are in the font: items such as LATIN SMALL LETTER U WITH CIRCUMFLEX. I am wondering if that is normal or if there is something like the glyphs needing to be in the first 256 glyphs of the font or something like that?

This is probably another matter to do with my trying to use the fonts which I produced using the Softy program, which is for fonts for just the Windows platform. For some of the later fonts from that collection, fonts which are incomplete and not published, I have used the technique of starting a new font using Font Creator 5.0 and then opening the Softy-produced original in a separate instantiation of Font Creator 5.0 and then copying the glyphs across one by one, so that I get both the original design of the glyph and also the default font structure provided by Font Creator 5.0.

However, I am learning about aspects of fontmaking by trying to get the existing fonts correct.

Of the other fonts which I am conserving, one is Chronicle, the font with the long ascenders and descenders. Some of the others, such as Eutopia Calligraphy, only have a few letters so far, being the results of experiments.


Posted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 6:56 pm
by William
Quest text version 2.05 is now available.

This version is the next published version after version 2.01.

This version adds 12 characters. They complete those required for Latvian. The previous version already had the macron characters and the S caron, s caron, z caron and z caron.



Posted: Sat Sep 17, 2005 5:36 pm
by William
A new version of the Quest text font, namely version 2.11 has been available on the web since 3.07 pm British Summer Time (1407 GMT) this afternoon.

This version is a conversion. Some time ago I started QUEST202.TTF as a new font within Font Creator 5.0 and used the glyphs from Quest text version 2.01, copied using the clipboard, as the artwork for the new font. I adjusted the metrics.

As Quest text has many glyphs this process of copying glyphs continued at various times over a period of time, copying to a new file at each session. An exception along the way was that QUEST205.TTF was copied directly from QUEST201.TTF and used to produce QUESTTXT.TTF version 2.05, which was published. QUEST206.TTF was copied from QUEST204.TTF and the additional characters added into Quest text version 2.05 were copied into QUEST206.TTF.

The conversion process also added-in Private Use Area copies of some of the characters above U+00FF. This is so that I can use those characters when producing graphics using Serif DrawPlus 7.09 on a Windows 98 platform. The Serif DrawPlus 7.09 program converts the glyphs to curves, so the fact that the Private Use Area mapping is used does not affect the finished result.

Today I started QUEST211.TTF from a copy of QUEST210.TTF, copied using "save as", completed the conversion process and then produced Quest text version 2.11 in QUESTTXT.TTF from QUEST211.TTF. This involved, after using "save as" to produce the QUESTTXT.TTF file, deleting all of the unused glyphs in QUESTTXT.TTF, then using Format | Settings | Ranges and calculating both ranges, then validating the font. The font was then tested using Microsoft Word 97.

QUEST211.TTF still has ready-mapped spaces for adding other characters. So any future development would start by copying QUEST211.TTF to a new file QUEST212.TTF and using the font name Quest text 212 during development. This means that I do not alter existing finished work, just in case later additions need to be rethought or abandoned.

The font is available from the following web page.


Posted: Thu Nov 08, 2007 11:57 am
by William
Earlier this morning I was experimenting and thought that I would try to produce an A3 size pdf document such that a print suitable for framing could be made in a printshop. I decided to use one of the glyphs from within the Private Use Area of my Quest text font.

The original artwork was produced long ago, by me, by drawing directly into the Microsoft Paint program in white upon red and when imported into the font and back-calibrated with the font in use it turned out that the original drawing was the same size as the font glyph at about 340 point in size using Microsoft Windows.

It was so long ago that I imported the drawing into the font that the conversion from the bitmap drawing of the Paint program to the B├ęzier curves of a font may well have been done using the Softy program, before I used FontCreator.

The character is used at 720 point centred. The PagePlus 11 program converted the glyph to curves during the production of the pdf document.

William Overington

8 November 2007