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Anti-Aliased Fonts For GNOME

timothy posted more than 13 years ago | from the smoothing-the-edges dept.

News 331

McVeigh revels in this posting at Gnotices site which reads: "GDKFXT transparently adds anti-aliased font support to GTK+-1.2. Once you have installed it, you can run any (well, nearly any) existing GTK+ binary and see anti-aliased fonts in the GTK widgets. You don't need to recompile GTK+ or your application.'" He adds "I'm running it now -- it it looks great!!"

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331 comments

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w00t~! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246226)

Second Big Pirst Frost of the day!!!

fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246228)

for amigadk

Re:fp (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246259)

"I'm running it now -- it it looks great!!"

I'm stretching my ass right now and it feels great!

--goatse.cx guy

Re:fp (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246274)

Dear goatse.cx guy,

Every time I visit your homepage I see your anus, are you stretching your ass all day?

Sincerly,
Rob Malda

Re:fp (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246290)

Dear Rob,

First of all, let me thank you for visiting my site on a regular basis.

The answer to your question is: yes. I do stretch my ass all day long. Getting my anus dilated to its present size took a long time and if I miss my regular exercise it will lose its flexibility which in my line of work would be a disaster. I used to take a break during the weekend, but getting started again on the Monday was often a bit painful. That's why I exercise during weekends too.

Kind regards,

goatse.cx guy

This calls for... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246231)

A NEWS PIECE!

Slashdot website creator, Rob "CmdrTaco" Malda, was rushed to the hospital this afternoon after having his penis sliced off. Authorities say the accident involved Rob's penis, his computer, and an illegal computer device imported from China that was designed to stimulate the penis during cyber-sex. The authorities aren't releasing many details yet as to how it happened, but they suspect that the device malfunctioned which caused his penis to be sliced off. However, there is speculation among the Slashdot community that the Open Source Operating System "Linux" is to blame, for its faulty structure and lack of professional development. There is no word of whether there was any foul-play involved from hackers amongst the Linux community.

Re:This calls for... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246458)

You imposter, that is MY news piece!

Does it work with all applications? (1)

damiam (409504) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246232)

Does it work with all applications? I saw a patch for AA text in GTK1.2 a few months ago that worked in most apps but crashed XMMS and a few others.

Re:Does it work with all applications? (1)

JanneM (7445) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246246)

Apparently it will by default disable antialiasing for widgets that can't handle it. Don't know if xmms will be OK, though.

/Janne

Re:Does it work with all applications? (2)

kilrogg (119108) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246415)

This works fine with Xmms. It took me a whole 2 minutes to download, install (there's a .rpm) and figure out that I had to select the proper theme. Looks perty sweet(better than the screenshot), but it doesn't appear to affect all fonts in gtk programs.

Re:Does it work with all applications? (2)

kilrogg (119108) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246425)

Oh, and a link [gnome.org] To the program.

what's up with this: "Your comment violated the poster comment compression filter. Comment aborted"

Re:Does it work with all applications? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246525)

what's up with this: "Your comment violated the poster comment compression filter. Comment aborted"

The new slashcode compresses all comments using ZIP. Because we all know that if a comment can be compressed to a certain ratio it must be spam, right?

Holy shit (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246233)

Anti-aliased fonts? Windows has had that since Win95 and the Plus Pack. Nice to see gnome is at the bleeding edge,

Re:Holy shit (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246270)

-10000000 TROLL

You did not sing the priases of Lunix. You are a troll.

Holy shit, mac had anti aliased fonts in OS 8 (1)

kiwipeso (467618) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246517)

umm, that's since 1994

This is great! (1)

James Skarzinskas (518966) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246234)

Just the little things adding up, such as this, will make open-source alternatives such as GNOME rise above Windows.. Muahahah!

Typical open source (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246361)

Windows had this feature 5 years ago.

Re:This is great! (2, Interesting)

vrmlknight (309019) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246422)

This isn't meant as a troll but does it greatly increases mem and processor usage so everything runs slowly i had that problem w/ gnome and anti aliasing fonts on a 500mHz w/ 128 ram so what use is it for average users not everyone has a 1.2 athlon w/ 512 ram... yea its good to offer but is it fast???

Re:This is great! (1)

James Skarzinskas (518966) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246473)

Good point; the more "little features" they add, the less of a low-end available platform it becomes for those who want to use a graphical environment.

Re:This is great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246509)

Have you ever used Windows? If that is the case, you SHOULD have noticed that Windows has had AA out of the box for 3 years.

Come to think of it, Windows, MacOS, BeOS and QNX have all had AA out of the box for a long, long time.

In other news... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246239)

Gnome, the "leading" desktop in Linux, adds support for $OLD_KDE_FEATURE, finally bringing $OLD_KDE_FEATURE to the masses.

*YAWN*

Re:In other news... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246294)

Putting the '$' in your post did not make you appear any smarter.

I dub thee, '-1, Dumbfuck'

This is just what we need (1)

Loudergood (313870) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246244)

My only complaint left with Gnome is the clunky nautilus, now that it's a tad easier on my eyes.

Re:This is just what we need (3, Interesting)

JanneM (7445) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246272)

I never used gmc (or mc, for that matter), I've only tried Nautilus to see how it works, and the same goes for every other filemanager I've tried under Linux. In Linux, I prefer using shellcommands rather that dragn'drop. It's not becuse Linux filemanagers are bad - they aren't.

The weird thing is that under Win or NT, I have little problems with using their filemanager, and under MacOS, I'd feel lost without having directory windows everywhere. When I tried a program that gave me the same interface on Linux, I lost all patience within five minutes.

I think it's something about how you think about your system. I see Linux differently than I see MacOS (or Windows...), so my preferred work habits are different too. I saw the same thing happen with a friend who's a long time Mac developer when he started using Linux. After a while, he went more and more to using a shell instead of a filemanager (though he still mixes those uses after almost a year).

/Janne

Re:This is just what we need (2)

Jace of Fuse! (72042) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246497)

It's not becuse Linux filemanagers are bad - they aren't.

I don't guess they are really all that bad, but I've yet to find one I can tolerate.

under Win or NT, I have little problems with using their filemanager

Me too, I disable all of the buttons, address bars, and other crap (turn off file hiding and extensions... it becomes usable!)

MacOS, I'd feel lost without having directory windows everywhere.

The MacOS does things well too. So did/does the Amiga. In fact, my favorite still today is the "Bland Old Amiga" file management system. It was very simple, yet powerful. Some people thought it was too simple, so along came many tools to spruce it up. Of course, they were OPTIONAL, the way features should be.

I think it's something about how you think about your system.

I tend to agree. 9 out of 10 times I use my BSD machine over a telnet connection. It sits on the other side of the room. The monitor is almost always off, the keyboard is a POS, and the mouse sucks. BUT, I do use it, and frequently. I just tend to use shells most of the time. I hate KDE. I hate Gnome. I hate X. Loath them, even. If they weren't both so emmensely popular with Linux users, I'd say the Unix world had a better chance of a "new killer underdog" popping up out of no-where and totally replacing X, since that's normally the way the computer industry works. But with the attitude of users today, esspecially current day Linux users, a really radical new desktop system for Unix would get flamed down and kicked under in much the same way Microsoft handles their competition: Without mercy.

Re:This is just what we need (1)

Loudergood (313870) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246283)

true true...I've picked up a lot of bad habits since I left good ol DOS behind

great. (2)

garcia (6573) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246245)

freshmeat is even getting the jump on /.

I saw this yesterday on fm.net and decided that it really wasn't worth the time to dl/install/fuck with it.

if it is so great I am sure that it will be at some point included in the GNOME base. Until that time I will remain anti anti-aliased ;)

thanks for the info though.

Re:great. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246305)

Are these comments your personal fucking weblog? Are supposed to give a good goddamn about what you do in your personal life?

Add something to fucking conversation, Karma fuck lad. Even a goatsex link would be better then the crap you post.

That time of the month eh? (0, Offtopic)

trikyguy (170305) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246338)

Someone sounds bitter. Was it really worth the time required to post this? I guess you trying your hand at crude humor with the goatsex line.

Re:great. (0, Flamebait)

garcia (6573) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246339)

may I ask what the fuck you are talking about?

if you had posted w/an account I would have emailed you back instead of wasting time messaging you here.

at least my post was ontopic idiot.

Re:great. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246414)

shut up you fucking dumb nigger.

Re:great. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246428)

sorry, but I am quite white.

time for you to go troll elsewhere. I could care less.

Re:great. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246533)

Its "I couldn't care less"

Re:great. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246408)

wow whooptie shit fm got the jump on /.

Re:great. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246453)

That's nice, but I really don't care. Why don't you post if you have something to ADD to the conversation, dipshit?

Re:great. (1)

Publicus (415536) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246558)

Good call. I just tried it and found out the hard way that it doesn't work well with the Ximian stuff. Now Evolution doesn't look right - so I removed the package aaf package - and Evolution is going really slow. I'd suggest that people hold off on this one, and as the man says, wait until it's part of the base. Unless of course you like to screw around with stuff, then go for it!

How about Clippy? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246248)

GNOME is incomplete without this annoying talking papper clip.

Re:How about Clippy? (0, Offtopic)

_N0EL (245472) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246472)

You mean Gnclippy?

I'm not impressed (5, Informative)

rgmoore (133276) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246257)

Not to be a stick in the mud, but I didn't notice much, if any, improvement when trying it. Of course I'm already operating at reasonably high resolution to start with, so there's going to be somewhat less room for improvement through anti-aliasing, but it's certainly not dramatic. The other disadvantage is that it's only for the one theme, so you can't take advantage if you want to keep using your existing theme. And, as they mention but don't emphasize, it's only for widgets not for all fonts, so the value was rather limited to start with.

Re:I'm not impressed (3, Informative)

1010011010 (53039) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246330)

Actually, you can get A.A. in other themes; just chose a "custom font" that's scalable in the Theme Selector.

Re:I'm not impressed (1)

kilrogg (119108) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246539)

I doesn't appear to work for me with any of the MS TTF (monotype) or the adobe fonts. The abisource and urw fonts are anti-aliased however.

Are the abisource fonts truetypes?

Re: What is anti-aliasing? (5, Informative)

Bodero (136806) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246258)

I've heard this term before but could never find out what it meant, what is anti-aliasing and why would I want it?

Basically anti-aliasing (in this case) means the use of grayscale to make better looking text (or graphics).

By using gray pixels around the edge of text, the "jaggyness" of text can be made to appear to be less.

For an illustration look at the top of Apple's home page, http://www.apple.com [apple.com] .

The "text" "Welcome to Apple" at the top is not really text - it is part of a graphic that uses color and grayscale. The characters appear smoother than regular Mac or PC text. Note where it says "What's Hot". It looks much smoother than the regular html text in the headline below it, even though it is about the same size. Note also that anti-aliasing can make text look fuzzy or out of focus.

It is kinda like using interpolation to smooth out a graph.

The higher DPI (dots per inch), the more possible it would be to use this to make better looking text. However, on some systems, this would require new fonts and a complete rewrite of the "engine" that controls writing to the screen. GTK is low-level enough that something like this is able to make all your GTK text anti-aliased.

Anti-aliasing will really show it's merrits in the Web browswer (such as Mozilla that supports anti-aliasing on some platforms) and in graphics, and even some small games.

Re: What is anti-aliasing? (4, Informative)

znu (31198) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246309)

The "text" "Welcome to Apple" at the top is not really text - it is part of a graphic that uses color and grayscale. The characters appear smoother than regular Mac or PC text. Note where it says "What's Hot". It looks much smoother than the regular html text in the headline below it, even though it is about the same size.

Not in OmniWeb in OS X it doesn't; everything is beautifully anti-aliased. Which brings up an interesting point: not all anti-aliasing is created equal. This is very noticeable in OS X, which (for legacy reasons) actually has two different algorithms for it. Loading up the same page in IE (which uses QuickDraw) and OmniWeb (which uses CoreGraphics) makes the differences obvious. So, how good is the GTK anti-aliasing? Anyone got a screenshot?

Re: What is anti-aliasing? (2)

wct (45593) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246490)

The GTK anti-aliasing is still being handled by the FreeType engine, which is IMHO perceptively as good as it gets. But you're begging for the screenshots aren't you? Here are some tiny morsels for you :)

  • Konqueror (and the rest of QT) has xft enabled for a while now - shot 1 [uwa.edu.au]
  • And here is the gdkxft working on the gnapster menu bar - similar results. shot 2 [uwa.edu.au]

Re: What is anti-aliasing? (1)

super-flex-o-matic (517410) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246502)

the question is: why the apple anti-aliasing looks so cutting edge, and antialiasing in gimp for example is not usable for sizes of 12-9 pixels? this makes webdesigning ... a pain in the @ss. luckily i dont stick with mainstream design trends

Taking care of all the trolls early (1, Offtopic)

big.ears (136789) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246261)

No need to post any of the following comments, as I will take care of them for you:

"Big deal. KDE has had AA since ..."

"So what? OS X has had AA since ..."

"This is news? Windows has had AA since ..."

Unfortunately, I still don't have AA fonts, because I'm running debian and the alianized .deb I created didn't appear to do anything.

Re:Taking care of all the trolls early (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246286)

Ummm... I use Debian, and I've been using AA fonts without having to create a .deb

Re:Taking care of all the trolls early (1)

damiam (409504) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246291)

Unfortunately, I still don't have AA fonts, because I'm running debian and the alianized .deb I created didn't appear to do anything.

I'm also running Debian (potato + Ximian) and I installed gdkxft from source. It isn't working for me either. Maybe there's some issue with the GTK packages for Debian or something.

Re:Taking care of all the trolls early (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246376)

you have to change to that specific theme for it to work.

Re:Taking care of all the trolls early (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246400)

Ya and it only AAs buttons and menus that are in the gtk widgets, everything stays the same.

This is not correct. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246302)

There weren't ever any anonymous alcoholics in a windows version.

I'm not sure about KDE, however.

Re:Taking care of all the trolls early (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246308)

You forgot about this "troll":

Anti-aliased text is actually harder to read than well-designed b&w fonts because it lacks the high-frequency components that make text easy to read. Now well-designed anti-aliased fonts might be even better, but right now the AA stuff that we have has vertical and horizontal boundaries running in the middle of pixels, creating unsharp grayscale transistions like 255,255,128,0,0 while a 255,255,0,0 transition is what you need.

Actually, I'm glad GNOME was the last to have this shit in.

Mac OS 8/9 anti-aliasing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246377)

"...but right now the AA stuff that we have has vertical and horizontal boundaries running in the middle of pixels, creating unsharp grayscale transistions like 255,255,128,0,0 while a 255,255,0,0 transition is what you need."


Anti-aliased text on Mac OS 8.5 though Mac OS 9.x does not suffer from this, since horizontal and vertical lines are apparently not smoothed at all, while curves and diagonals are. As a result, it looks better than other solutions (including that which is used in Mac OS X).

From the screenshots that I've seen of WinXP, it seems that it does the same, although I don't know whether or not it depends on the actuall font being used.

Re:Taking care of all the trolls early (1)

bagel (78837) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246369)

I use Debian KDE (potato+woody). Supposedly KDE and QT is compiled with antialiased fonts. And X has AA as well. But whenever I run a KDE app, I get

Xlib: extension "RENDER" missing on display ":0.0"
And supposedly I only need to add the environment variable QT_XFT to 1 or TURE. Never works. Maybe you guys have better luck with the deb and gnome combination.

Re:Taking care of all the trolls early (1)

hattig (47930) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246410)

Sounds like you have an ATI graphics card. AA is only supported with ATI graphics cards from XFree86 4.1 and above. I have wonderful anti-aliased fonts with KDE on 4.0.3 on FreeBSD at home (Voodoo 4500), but at work with the same setup, I don't (ATI Mach 64 naffness).

Does anyone know if the GTK anti-aliasing uses the X11 RENDER extension, or if it does it all itself in some horrific Macrosoftian bloat copy?

Also, anti-aliased fonts should be made to just work on Linux/FreeBSD/KDE/Gnome. Better fonts management tools are required (MacOS/Windows has this kind of stuff down to a tee, and the Amiga had this all done 10 years ago with its font installers), not any of this mkfontdir, mkttfontdir and all that malarky. I think that in a year's time, Linux will be truly ready for the desktop. We need a full screen XDM/GDM/KDM that looks sexy for multiple users (with their photos and all that stuff), no text based boot up (user defined picture instead), and KDE/Gnome/etc friendlyness (when I install a Gnome app via RPM/DEB I want it to show up in the correct menu on my KDE desktop, with the proper icon, etc).

Still, things are getting there. Now just to rename /usr, /sbin, /tmp, /var, etc to meaningful names... :)

As if Gnome wasn't slow enough.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246262)

Time to rip out Nautilus. Could they make things any slower? Sheesh.

Sad News... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246265)

I just heard some sad news on TV, apparently Slashdot website creator, Rob "CmdrTaco" Malda, was rushed to the hospital this afternoon after having his penis sliced off. Authorities say the accident involved Rob's penis, his computer, and an illegal computer device imported from China that was designed to stimulate the penis during cyber-sex. The authorities aren't releasing many details yet as to how it happened, but they suspect that the device malfunctioned which caused his penis to be sliced off. However, there is speculation among the Slashdot community that the Open Source Operating System "Linux" is to blame, for its faulty structure and lack of professional development. There is no word of whether there was any foul-play involved from hackers amongst the Linux community.

Mozilla? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246275)

Does anyone know if this will add anti-aliasing to Mozilla?

One of the reasons I stick to Konqueror is because of anti-aliasing in web browsing...

Re:Mozilla? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246300)

And yet you could still go blind because the fonts are so distorted.

Now, once you copy the Windows True Type Fonts to the system things take a dramatic change for the better.

Windows, can't live with it, can't see without it.

Re:Mozilla? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246547)

No. Mozilla uses it's own toolkit. This will not benefit Mozilla.

what about KDE (1, Redundant)

Arctic Fox (105204) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246281)

<flamebait>
Hasn't KDE had this for quite some time?
</flamebait>
But this is still cool.... I remember when I got KDE and Anti-Alias fonts on my desktop with Mandrake 8.0.... it looked "too good"... almost made my eyes hurt. Anyone know why that would happen, or have experienced it?

Re:what about KDE (1)

omega9 (138280) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246307)

I agree. It hard to explain that "too good" good look. Sometimes, I swear I can even see colors inside AA white text. There are some AA fonts in KDE that make me feel like I supposed to be wearing glasses, I'm just not at the time.

Re:what about KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246314)

Try using Windows True Type fonts, your eye pain(strain) will vanish instantly.

Linux is great but, the fonts SUCK!

Re:what about KDE (1)

Darren Winsper (136155) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246481)

Oh please. RISC OS 2, released in 1989, had better AA than Windows. Check out http://www.riscos.com/risc_os_4/Features.html for shots of its AA in action.

Just crashed gnome for me. (1)

Grock (13780) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246287)

I just installed it..and all I get is a big ole
gnome core file in my home directory. Fortunately, it uninstalls (rpm --erase ...) fine,
and I'm back to running again..

Only for widgets? (2, Informative)

aussersterne (212916) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246289)

Being one who likes to try new things and who already uses fully AA KDE as my desktop, I thought it would be a good thing to download this and try it out.

But it only seems to anti-alias the text on buttons and in menus, not in text input or output panes!? So basically, it anti-aliases the parts of your applications that you look at least.

Not quite what I was hoping for...

Re:Only for widgets? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246385)

HOW THE FUCK IS THAT OFFTOPIC???

That's the most god damn on topic post of this whole fricken story.

What did you want the guy to LIE and say this little hack does more than AA a couple menus?

Re:Only for widgets? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246507)

the moderators are all on crack.

I thinking the same thing as you ,.. but it hasn't really antialiased any of my fonts... just changed them slightly.. but they still look like plain old gtk fonts ..

i could be doing something wrong .... i used xmag on a few of the widget fonts and they still look clunky.

Fonts: main Linux hindrance (2, Insightful)

simetra (155655) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246293)

IMHO, Fonts are a royal pain, and the main reason more people don't adopt Linux. If they could just build true type fonts and anti-aliasing into KDE, and make it work out of the box, then we'd start seeing way more converts.
Really, until recently, no matter how well I got X running, it still looked like crap. It's looking better now that I've got KDE working with ttfs and anti-aliasing, but it's a LONG way from being user friendly.
My 2 cents.

Agreed (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246334)

Of course by stating that on Slashdot, we have both been labeled heretics.

Re:Fonts: main Linux hindrance (2)

Glytch (4881) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246430)

IMHO, Fonts are a royal pain, and the main reason more people don't adopt Linux.

Wow! And for all this time I thought it was silly little things like hardware support or getting companies to write applications for it or getting installation to be fast and painless or some tiny little concerns like that.

All this time it was the fonts! My god, you're a genius! I wish I was as insightful as you!

Good news. (1)

omega9 (138280) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246295)

This is nothing but good news. Even smallish changes like AA fonts help in the long run.

Previous posters are content on slamming it because KDE has been doing AA for some time, and Win95+Plus even longer. So Gnome should just give up? Would you rather have AA in Gnome or not? If the answer is yes, don't bitch about the timing. You got it, now shut up.

Personaly, I leave AA fonts in KDE turned off at work. For some reason it actually makes certain things harder to read (probably the monitor). And honestly, I've never been able to tell that much difference in Windows when it is on.

I fail to see what there is to complain about.

oreilly (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246298)

Has anyone gotten and chance to read this latest release [fun.drno.de] from oreilly?

Re:oreilly (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246340)

Where can I find this?? I've checked Amazon and Barnes & Noble but neither one has it.

Computer AA vs. Hinting (5, Insightful)

mTor (18585) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246303)

Some people simply don't get the point. It is very easy to create anti-aliased fonts but the truth is that they don't look that good. They're simply too blurred and 10 and 12pt fonts simply look like crap (as this screenshot attests to that).

The reason why Microsoft's fonts look so good is because they are hinted and hand-tuned by humans. This is a painstakingly long process but it produces the best looking fonts. Linux is still lacking a copyright-free font set which looks good. Lots of people run the TT font server and use MS fonts because they are simply top-notch. Hinted fonts are essential when it comes to displaying fonts on the computer screen since reproducing quality and readable outlines on a low frequency, discrete grid is not easy.

Linux community needs to produce a quality set of serif and non-serif hinted fonts. Only then will Linux desktop look as good as MS Windows one.

AA is a step in the right direction but it is not a solution.

If you want to learn more about hinting, my I suggest this link: http://microsoft.com/typography/hinting/hinting.ht m?fname=%20&fsize=

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246352)

too bad we can't have a realtime +antialiased+ metafont engine in Xwindows... that would look grand.

Well spoken... (5, Informative)

root_42 (103434) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246364)

...and thus the best combination is to use the freely on the web available Microsoft fonts (on their ftp site e.g.) and disable font antialiasing for font sizes in the range from 8 to 14 pt. Very small fonts look better with AA and very large ones.
And here is what your /usr/lib/X11/XftConfig should contain:

match
any size > 8
any size < 14
edit
antialias = false;

Try it! Your desktop will look much better, and it won't hurt your eyes anymore. Of course you can tweak the point sizes a little.

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (4, Informative)

debrain (29228) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246390)

Interestingly, I find that the staroffice fonts are top-knotch. It's too bad that they're not part of the regular distributions, since I use them quite a bit, especially arioso and other esoteric fonts which are very pleasing to the eye, but not cookie-cutter. AA makes all the difference in the world for these fonts in KDE, especially arioso in kmail.


But I guess the point would be that there are more fonts out there beyond MS-Verdana and Times New Roman (but I admit to using these heavily), and Sun for one has provided fonts of very high quality with their StarOffice distribution. I won't speculate on the license of said fonts, however.

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246411)

Don't people just need to start with an ordinary copyright-free 12pt font and add bits of gray in the corners?

### :###
# --> #:
# #

This doesn't look too hard to me.

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246426)

The thing is that TT fonts are not bitmaps. Yes, X server does use bitmap fonts for almost everything but bitmapped fonts are crappy since they are not scaleable. Check out that page on Hinting referenced in parent. It explains exactly what goes into creation of quality fonts. There's quite a few things that help fonts become more readable.

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246508)

bitmapped fonts are crappy since they are not scaleable.

Bitmapped fonts are crappy on a printer, but are the best on a screen. Having hand-tuned 10pt, 12pt, etc. fonts is all you need for this range of sizes, no need for a 11.293pt font.

There's quite a few things that help fonts become more readable.

Most of these things are already taken care of. I said "start with an ordinary copyright-free 12pt font".

Check out that page on Hinting referenced in parent.

Actually my comment was for those who have already (1) read that text, (2) digested it, and (3) started thinking about an easy hack that will look better than anti-aliased fonts for gnome [anu.edu.au] . You're still at step 1.

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (2, Insightful)

Sergej (133868) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246454)

To make Free fonts one needs Free tools to make them, unless you can pay for a commercial font type editor.

There's some future in PfaEdit [sourceforge.net] which is somewhat Free though...

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (2)

update() (217397) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246522)

Linux community needs to produce a quality set of serif and non-serif hinted fonts. Only then will Linux desktop look as good as MS Windows one.

This would be a great thing to lobby for, before the investment in the Linux desktop dries up completely: that someone with deep pockets (IBM, Gnome Foundation, the remnants of VA) would buy or underwrite development for some good, freely-licensed, anti-aliasable fonts.

It's not the kind of thing a talented CS sophomore is going to bang out.

Re:Computer AA vs. Hinting (2, Informative)

TandyMasterControl (136043) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246549)

You are speaking in generalities, and confusing your limited experience for a universal principle.
On your moinitor, maybe, AA fonts look blurry. On any monitor with a deccently high resolution, = &lt .26mm pixel height for example, they are a godsend. Hell, they are even a godsend on almost any decent TFT, especially using rgb for subpixel rendering instead of grays. The better your monitor the more AA fonts resemble good quality printing on paper. Even in small point sizes.

And I will do some generalization myself: the better the fonts look in many applications, such as word processors like OpenOffice which now automatically uses AA if available, and document layout programs like Quark Xpress, the more confident and comfortable most people feel about using those applications. The resemblance to printed output removes the need to imagine the look of the final document while working on it. Now that AA has been standard for so long on those platforms where such applications are most used, few of the typesetters, office workers, and none of the designers would ever consider a platform without this ability as minimally acceptable.


AA is most definitely *a* solution for Linux on the desktop. In fact it is an essential solution without any substitute. It is not the only display related feature that has needed improvement on the Linux desktop. But at last we are putting lack of AA behind us.


Well hinted Type 1 fonts would be far better than Microsoft's scraggly assed truetypes which are only useful for screen display anyway. But it is completely mistaking the nature of the problem to say that "hinting is important and Anti-aliasing is not at all important, and worse, it is a bad thing".

graphics compare to the mac (1)

mark_lybarger (199098) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246311)


so now i can FINALLY make graphics on my pc that will compete with the mac? :)

Re:graphics compare to the mac (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246440)

nope. not there yet.

IN Other News (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246326)

Internet Explorer 6 was released yesterday to kick Mozilla's bloated ass.

Re:IN Other News (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246347)

Where have you been. IE6 was released days ago.

You're right about one thing though, it does kick everything else's ass. But, then IE5 had already done that so, not much of an improvement.

ONCE I FARTED (-1, Offtopic)

JeromeyKesyer (463790) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246333)

and there was oily discharge
mm! it tasted good

Re:ONCE I FARTED (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246349)

That's called Anal Leakage.

Been eating fatty foods for several days?

Or Crisco?

Here are some nice KDE screenshots with AA (0, Offtopic)

Khalid (31037) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246386)

http://www.mosfet.org/liquid.html

I hope Gnome will catch up soon.

Re:Here are some nice KDE screenshots with AA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246476)

I saw this a few days ago but, for the life of me, I can't tell the difference between the old and the new.

I even went so far as changing my screen resolution and color depth to see if it made a difference. But, they look the same to me.

Troy Donahue, actor, dead at 65 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246392)

Actor Troy Donahue, a blond, blue-eyed teen heartthrob of the 1950s and '60s, died Sunday. He was 65.

Donahue died at St. John's Hospital and Medical Center in Santa Monica after suffering a heart attack on Thursday, said family friend Bob Palmer.

The actor played Sandra Dee's young lover in 1959's ``A Summer Place'' a role that made him a teen matinee star.

``He was a good-looking, blond guy who looked great on the beach,'' Palmer said. ``He was a little more moody - he wasn't a gee-whiz guy. His character was more the brooding youth, but with heroic underpinnings.''

Yeah, I guess so (2, Insightful)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246424)

Is anyone actually proud of this ugly hack? Call me crazy, but antialising should be supported at the font rendering level, not at the application (or app toolkit) level.

Can someone *please* come up with a spec for overhauling font management in X? Overhauling X in general? Just steal display PDF from Apple/Adobe?

Something??? This is unbelievably crude, and the OSS community should be embarrased.

it is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246544)

Anti-aliasing is done at the font rendering level. That's what Xft is.


To gravely over-simplify, originally there was a function to render ugly black-and-white bitmapped non-AA text. It's standard, so everyone used it. Then, about a year ago, the XFree86 people decided that ugly fonts weren't good enough, so they made a new function which would render in AA. Unfortunately, people are still in the transition of moving from one function to the other. The transition will take some time, especially since the new function is non-standard, but toolkits like GTK+ and Qt are easing the transition.

Sad day for all trolls... (-1, Offtopic)

dj28 (212815) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246464)

Looks like the goatse guy actually died at the age of 74 (seriously).
http://www.stileproject.com/goatse.html

easy way to make every computer app anti-aliased.. (1, Funny)

kneel (17810) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246478)

smear vaseline on your monitor. the text will appear just as blurry as if you were using 'font smoothing' under windows 98.

Yes!? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2246505)

Imagine a bewolf cluster on these!

Stop-gap measure (2, Informative)

wct (45593) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246511)

I haven't seen it pointed out yet, but GDK/GTK 1.3 have had AA enabled for a while now, so this is very much an interim thing while we wait for the big gnome 2.0 release.



I've tried it out a bit and generally liked it. There are some problems with font sizes in certain applications, where the font is now larger than the widget, but then again this may be due to the changed font preferences required. It takes a bit of fudging the configurations in Debian, and make sure you have a symlink /etc/X11/XF86Config to your /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 if you're running XF4.0, or the config script dies.

What's the big deal? (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 13 years ago | (#2246534)

I really just don't see the point of anti-aliased fonts... Why the whole big concern over fonts that are slightly jagged. I'm perfectly happy with the normal fonts (although I wish there were more to choose from) and think they jook just fine.
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