Author Topic: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11  (Read 18512 times)

Clark

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Re: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11
« Reply #15 on: June 01, 2007, 03:59:07 pm »
I'm thinking you're seeing this problem because SlickEdit is using anti-aliasing which is making your fonts look worse.  There are some cases where anti-aliasing makes fonts look like they are fuzzy.  Does that sound like what is happening?

Clark

forest

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Re: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11
« Reply #16 on: June 01, 2007, 04:44:29 pm »
I'm thinking you're seeing this problem because SlickEdit is using anti-aliasing which is making your fonts look worse.  There are some cases where anti-aliasing makes fonts look like they are fuzzy.  Does that sound like what is happening?

Yes, as I wrote in earlier posts, SlickEdit is clearly using anti-aliasing, and anti-aliasing is a problem for me.  That's why I have that option turned off at the system level on my machine.  All my other applications respect that option.  SlickEdit is the only one that ignores it and uses anti-aliasing anyway.

That's not the whole problem, though.  I don't know if this has changed in SlickEdit v12, but in v11, SlickEdit's non-anti-aliased font rendering was horrible.  It looked exactly as though SlickEdit was not using the freetype bytecode interpreter for font hinting, again ignoring my system settings, and appearing obviously different from every other app on my desktop.  (See my first screenshot for an example.)  This is most obvious when using the high quality Microsoft Core Fonts.

If you can get SlickEdit to honor my system's font settings, and render fonts like every other app on my desktop, I'll consider this issue solved.

Clark

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Re: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11
« Reply #17 on: June 01, 2007, 05:41:09 pm »
It sounds like l need to better reproduce the problem since it's not just the anti-aliasing.  Most fonts even the Micrsoft fonts still look better with anti-aliasing on my system.  I'll work on this some more first.  I found some properties for hinting but I'll have to find some docs on them too.   Once I've figured out how to set the XFT configuration options, the fonts will like right.  Then I'll try to figure out where the OS stores these settings.  I can't promise I'll be able to figure out that part but I'll try.

Clark

forest

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Re: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11
« Reply #18 on: June 01, 2007, 05:46:17 pm »
Great.  Thanks for working on this, Clark.  I hope the Ubuntu 7.04 instructions I provided earlier will help in reproducing it.

Clark

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Re: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11
« Reply #19 on: June 04, 2007, 03:46:15 pm »
Looks like I have made some progress.  What's your email address and what is the exact version of SlickEdit you are using (Help>About SlickEdit).   You might want to send this information to support instead of broad casting your email address here.   I'd like to send you and executable.  I can tell that the settings are making a differences.  However, there are no settings which arguable make my fonts look a lot better.  This could be because I'm on a notebook.  I found a way to get the system settings.  However, you need to restart the X server for SlickEdit to see them.

forest

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Re: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11
« Reply #20 on: June 04, 2007, 10:31:12 pm »
I just sent email to support@slickedit.com, so you should be able to find my address there.

My current SlickEdit license is for version 9.  The trial copy that I have been testing (version 12) has expired, so it won't let me enter the Help -> About screen to check the version number for you.  The file name I downloaded to install it was:
se_12000000_linux_trial.tar.gz

forest

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Re: Ugly unhinted TrueType fonts in SlickEdit v12 & v11
« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2007, 03:27:24 am »
[Copied from email, for the record...]

The default fonts that come with linux don't have proper hints in them, so they're normally quite ugly on screen, no matter which hinter your font renderer uses.  Most linux distributions try to compensate by using freetype's autohinter plus antialiasing, but they still don't look very good.  (They're either blurry or malformed or both.)

The only way I know to get fonts looking really crisp is to install fonts that have hints in them, use a proper bytecode hinter, and turn off antialiasing.

Here's a breakdown:

default linux fonts + default hinter (autohinter) + antialiasing = mediocre
default linux fonts + default hinter (autohinter) = ugly
default linux fonts + proper bytecode hinter = ugly
good microsoft fonts + default hinter (autohinter)= ugly
good microsoft fonts + proper bytecode hinter = perfect

Right now, the only free high-quality fonts with hints are the Microsoft Core Fonts, and the only linux distribution I know of that has a bytecode hinter built-in is Ubuntu 7.04 (Feisty).  So, you have to follow *all* of the instructions in my post.  Install Ubuntu Feisty, install the Microsoft fonts, turn off antialiasing/smoothing, and use Microsoft fonts (e.g. Courier New) in your programs.  You might have to restart the system before some of those changes take effect.

Good luck!