[OpenIndiana-discuss] Subpixel Patches

Albert Lee trisk at opensolaris.org
Mon Nov 8 06:02:08 UTC 2010

On Mon, Nov 8, 2010 at 12:14 AM, Dustin Marquess <dmarquess at gmail.com> wrote:
> All,
> Sorry in advance if this more of an IllumOS question, but I don't think it is.
> As somebody who sits and stares at an LCD all day long, I have a
> nitpick for fonts looking good.  This has been one area that for me,
> all *IXs have been falling flat on.
> In my quest, I found the following site:
> http://www.infinality.net/blog/?cat=4
> They offer patches for freetype, cairo, and libXft that make fonts
> awesome.  Back in the OpenSolaris days, when I was attempting to move
> my work laptop over, I managed to get freetype patched, but I always
> had problems finding the correct cairo & libXft sources to
> patch/install.
> Before I attempt again, is there any decent reason why these patches
> shouldn't be in IllumOS/OpenIndiana proper?
> I went through all of the SRPMs and pulled out the font patches and
> put them @ http://www.cmsnoc.com/font/ to make it easier to dig
> through.

These changes are questionable. As hinting is usually meant to fit
outlines to the pixel grid at small sizes for clarity, the phrase
"subpixel hinting" is a bit of an oxymoron. The main part is
self-described as simply disabling hinting along the X axis.

Do these apply to the autohinter or the embedded hints? Do you have
examples of rendering improvements? If there are improvements, why
hasn't upstream adopted them?

"Good" for font rendering is highly subjective. With the (formerly
patented) bytecode interpreter enabled, I find the FreeType output for
most fonts included with the system, such as the commonly used
Liberation and DejaVu fonts, to be pleasant and have less noticeable
artifacts than the Windows font renderer output with the Windows
system fonts and Core Fonts.


More information about the OpenIndiana-discuss mailing list