Is .notdef required or not?

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Psymon
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Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Psymon » Mon Dec 10, 2018 6:27 pm

In my own four fonts I don't have the .notdef slot -- I'm not sure why, but my fonts seem to work fine without it. So I opened up a couple commercial fonts off my system, and it seems that some have it, others don't.

Searching the forums here, I saw one thread that said it's required -- I guess it's just one more glyph (or non-glyph, since it's empty), so it's not like it's going to bloat the file size for my font or something to add it in. In the fonts off my system that do have it, though, it doesn't seem to have any codepoint or anything.

What do I do to add that .notdef thingie in, and have it placed at the beginning of my font? Without a codepoint for it, when I "sort by codepoint," does that just bump it to the beginning, ahead of everything that does have a codepoint? I'm just not sure if there's something special that I'm supposed to "do" to get that .notdef added in correctly (I don't even know what it's for!).

Or is it, in fact, not actually required (despite what I read from one person in a thread somewhere here)?

Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Mon Dec 10, 2018 6:40 pm

The .notdef glyph is required. Insert a glyph before the first glyph, and copy the code-points etc., from a font that does have one using paste special.

Recommended Glyphs
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Psymon
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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Psymon » Tue Dec 11, 2018 2:12 am

Oh, thank you, Bhikkhu ! :)

Went googling and now I understand what that glyph is for -- I seem to recall that I/we had a discussion about this somewhere before in the past??? Vaguely rings a bell.

I think I'll make a box w/question mark for my .notdef, but apart from that I have four other empty glyphs...

.null
nonmarkingreturn
space
nbspace

I remember adding in that last one based on your advice/tutorial. :)

What's .null for, though? Something similar to .notdef?

And nonmarkingreturn -- is that a carriage return?

I presume those are the only "empty" glyphs (or non-glyphs -- since there is no actual glyph) that a font should have, eh?

Thanks, once again! :)

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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Alfred » Wed Jan 02, 2019 6:42 am

Psymon wrote:
Tue Dec 11, 2018 2:12 am
I think I'll make a box w/question mark for my .notdef, but apart from that I have four other empty glyphs...

.null
nonmarkingreturn
space
nbspace

I remember adding in that last one based on your advice/tutorial. :)

What's .null for, though? Something similar to .notdef?

And nonmarkingreturn -- is that a carriage return?

I presume those are the only "empty" glyphs (or non-glyphs -- since there is no actual glyph) that a font should have, eh?
Both .null and nonmarkingreturn used to be required, but they are now obsolete.

https://www.high-logic.com/fontcreator/ ... lyphs.html
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Psymon
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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Psymon » Wed Jan 02, 2019 7:34 am

Alfred wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 6:42 am
Both .null and nonmarkingreturn used to be required, but they are now obsolete.

https://www.high-logic.com/fontcreator/ ... lyphs.html
Oh, thanks for that link! I guess I could delete the .null and nonmarkingreturn, but figuring I'll keep them, at least I have the advance width now set correctly on both those (in all my fonts) now, as per the recommendations there. :)

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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by William » Thu Jan 03, 2019 5:04 pm

Psymon wrote:
Tue Dec 11, 2018 2:12 am
I presume those are the only "empty" glyphs (or non-glyphs -- since there is no actual glyph) that a font should have, eh?
The space character does not usually have any contours in it, but it does need a codepoint, namely hexadecimal 20, and it does need an advance width so that every time a space character is encountered in some text, a space appears in the display. If, say, the advance width of the space character were zero then there would be no observable space between words in the display, which is not what is wanted.

William

Psymon
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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Psymon » Thu Jan 03, 2019 6:30 pm

William wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 5:04 pm
If, say, the advance width of the space character were zero then there would be no observable space between words in the display, which is not what is wanted.
Then it wouldn't be a space character, it would be a no-space character. ;)

Microsoft has a good page on how big (or small) to make one's space character, with some good advice which I found helpful for getting the space sized right for my fonts...

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/typogr ... whitespace

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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Jan 03, 2019 6:46 pm

Segoe Emojji has some space characters:

🚀🛰🛸🚀🛰🛸🚀🛰🛸
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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Psymon » Thu Jan 03, 2019 7:04 pm

Ha ha, Bhikkhu. :lol:

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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Erwin Denissen » Thu Jan 03, 2019 7:05 pm

:lol:
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Re: Is .notdef required or not?

Post by Alfred » Thu Jan 03, 2019 7:15 pm

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 6:46 pm
Segoe Emojji has some space characters:

🚀🛰🛸🚀🛰🛸🚀🛰🛸
Psymon wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 7:04 pm
Ha ha, Bhikkhu. :lol:
Erwin Denissen wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 7:05 pm
:lol:
OK, it was a good gag, but we probably shouldn’t encourage him! :D
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