What does "Outline Issues" mean?

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nabsltd
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What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by nabsltd » Fri Jun 29, 2018 2:28 am

In FontCreator 11.5, when I open a .ttf or .otf file, I sometimes get a category named "Outline Issues". I can't see anything particularly wrong with the glyphs that are flagged as such, and running the Validation wizard doesn't clear up the issues.

What is wrong with these glyphs that is causing them to be flagged?

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by PJMiller » Fri Jun 29, 2018 9:15 am

There will be something wrong, probably something that the font validation can detect but not fix.

It could be that the outline is drawn outside the allowed area or that there are knots where the outline crosses itself.

Look at the glyph in the edit window and see if there are any red points on it, if there are then look at the outline and control points in that area.

nabsltd
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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by nabsltd » Fri Jun 29, 2018 1:24 pm

PJMiller wrote:
Fri Jun 29, 2018 9:15 am
There will be something wrong, probably something that the font validation can detect but not fix.
Nope. The validation window says "No problems detected", and the glyph isn't in the "Validation Issues" group.

In addition, the "Outline Issues" group appears as soon as I load the font...even before I run any validation.
It could be that the outline is drawn outside the allowed area
What is "the allowed area"? If you mean between WinDescent and WinAscent, then that's not it, as many glyphs with "Outline Issues" have everything well between those lines...most have all points inside the Baseline and CapHeight lines.

Some of the glyphs with "issues" do have negative LSB or RSB, but other glyphs with very similar values do not have "issues".

The point I was making is that this is not discussed in the manual, nor is there any indicator what the "issue" might be. Everything that is in the "Validation Issues" group has a red X somewhere in the glyph edit window, and text that says what the problem is. There must be something similar for "Outline Issues", but either I have display of it disabled, or I am just missing it.

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by MikeW » Fri Jun 29, 2018 3:09 pm

The outline thing simply means (in my experience) that part of a glyph extends way outside the LSB, RSB or both.

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Jun 29, 2018 3:10 pm

If you want to share the font project we cam take a look at it.
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nabsltd
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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by nabsltd » Fri Jun 29, 2018 3:48 pm

An example is a Google font licensed under the OFL, so you should be able to grab it:

https://fonts.google.com/specimen/Cardo

Open the "regular" font, and you'll see the glyphs with "Outline Issues' (#1714 and #3043). Glyph 1714 also needs fixing from validation issues, but that's not what I'm talking about.

Compare glyph 1714 to other similar glyphs (e.g., 624, 2618, 2662, 3636). Nothing jumps out as being enough different between 1714 and those four to make it have an "issue".

As for glyph 3043, the only thing I see is a large negative RSB, but there are other glyphs (like 2662) that are far larger in absolute terms, and just as big in terms of relation to outline extents.

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Fri Jun 29, 2018 3:55 pm

In Tools, Options, Validation, enable Local Detection.

You will then see that the first glyph has off-curve extreme co-ordinates.

The second glyph with outline issues is a composte. Jump to the glyph members and you will see the same error.
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nabsltd
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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by nabsltd » Fri Jun 29, 2018 5:25 pm

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:
Fri Jun 29, 2018 3:55 pm
In Tools, Options, Validation, enable Local Detection.
It is.
You will then see that the first glyph has off-curve extreme co-ordinates.

The second glyph with outline issues is a composte. Jump to the glyph members and you will see the same error.
Did you bother to read anything I wrote? Once all validation issues are fixed and the real-time validation window says "No problems detected" for the glyph or the composite members, they are still listed as having "Outline issues". And, again, note that this shows up as soon as the font is opened, before any validation takes place, so it cannot be a validation issue. And, the fact that glyph 3043 is never flagged as a "Validation Issue" should also clue you in. Last, composite glyphs are not flagged as a validation issue if a component has a validation issue...the composite glyph must have an issue beyond that. You can see this by searching for "lod" in this font, and you'll see that only the base glyph (901) is flagged as a validation issue, and only glyph 3043 has a "Outline Issue", even though four other glyphs (920, 921, 3045, 3070) also use that base.

So, please try to answer the question I asked and not the question you think I asked. I have done all the steps that are documented (and that you suggest I do), and still don't see what FontCreator is complaining about.

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by Erwin Denissen » Fri Jun 29, 2018 6:22 pm

If outlines or side bearings are not as expected, then such warning may appear.

The fist glyph might seem just fine, but I wonder if your second glyph (Hebrew letter yod with hiriq) has correct side bearings. Maybe someone with more insights in Hebrew can shed some light on this?
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Leon Gauthier
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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by Leon Gauthier » Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:00 pm

What I don't understand is that even after "fixing" the two glyphs with Outline Issues in the Cardo font mentioned above, they still show up in the Troubleshooting collection as having Outline Issues. Both glyphs had extreme off-curve points which FontCreator resolved by adding on-curve points.

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by Erwin Denissen » Sat Jun 30, 2018 10:34 pm

Suspicious side bearings?
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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by Leon Gauthier » Sun Jul 01, 2018 12:08 am

You must be right, Erwin … $2E12 or hypodiastolḗ seems to be an early Greek comma if you will. For kicks, I set the bearings to -50 and 50 and it looks to be better positioned to act as a comma. And, it was removed from the Outline Issues list. Funny, I would not think of the bearings as an outline issue but that just shows how little I know.

On the other hand, $FB1D, the yod with hiriq, seems to work correctly with the bearings as they are. But, again, what do I know.

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by nabsltd » Tue Jul 03, 2018 5:59 am

Leon Gauthier wrote:
Sun Jul 01, 2018 12:08 am
You must be right, Erwin … $2E12 or hypodiastolḗ seems to be an early Greek comma if you will. For kicks, I set the bearings to -50 and 50 and it looks to be better positioned to act as a comma. And, it was removed from the Outline Issues list. Funny, I would not think of the bearings as an outline issue but that just shows how little I know.

On the other hand, $FB1D, the yod with hiriq, seems to work correctly with the bearings as they are. But, again, what do I know.
Glyph 1714 (hypodiastole) can also be removed from the "Outline Issues" group by setting the "type" to "Mark". Setting it back to "Automatic" or "Simple" will put it back into the "Outline Issues" group.

Glyph 3043 (Hebrew letter yod with hiriq) can be fixed by setting the right side bearing to anything greater than the current -704. This seems to be because the width of the outlines in the glyph is 704, and it looks like FontCreator doesn't like an advance width of zero. The problem is that we don't know what the original author of the font wanted for this character, or whether it was a mistake that slipped through.
Erwin Denissen wrote:
Fri Jun 29, 2018 6:22 pm
If outlines or side bearings are not as expected, then such warning may appear.
Obviously, FontCreator has logic inside that triggers this warning. The problem is that there are no details about what, exactly, is the trigger for a particular glyph.

As you can see from what I have found that "fixes" each glyph with "Outline Issues", it's not at all obvious. So, how about some more information in either the validation window or the glyph properties window that lets the user know what it is that needs fixing according to FontCreator. It would also be nice to know how important each type of "Outline Issue" is to fix, as some of them might just be a font author who did something odd, bug legal.

nabsltd
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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by nabsltd » Tue Jul 03, 2018 2:21 pm

Just to add to the confusion, I found another font where there are two glyphs that are identical except for name and code points, but only one is flagged with "Outline Issues".

The one that isn't flagged doesn't have any code point assigned.

So, it's not just the "outlines" that are being considered for this, and that really makes it confusing, because a glyph with no code point assigned can still be used in the font, either as part of a composite or via OpenType features like substitutions.

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Re: What does "Outline Issues" mean?

Post by nabsltd » Tue Jul 24, 2018 7:06 pm

And, here's another weird example.

Open the attached TTF file, and you'll see 18 characters with "Outline Issues".

Save the font as a FontCreator project and close the project.

Now, open the project file you just saved. The "Outline Issues" are gone.

The same thing happens if you save the original file as an OTF/TTF file and then open the newly saved file. So, FontCreator is doing something to "fix" the outline issues when the file is saved, but I'd still really like to know what, exactly, the "issues" are in the first place.
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Freestyle Script Bold.ttf
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