no gifs due to patent problems
The GNU font utilities
to allow conversion of a scanned type specimen image into an outline
(PostScript or Metafont) font. These fonts can be used with
The fontutils are looking for a maintainer. Please
email if you're interested.
Since the fontutils were originally written in the early 1990's,
other programs have been developed which do a better job of some parts
of this task. Here is a list of the fontutils programs with indications
of their current status:
- imgrotate: rotates images 90 degrees, an inefficiently-implemented
subset of pnmrotate (from netpbm).
- imageto: extracts individual characters from a large image; still useful.
- fontconvert: some features may still be useful, such as creating a
tfm file from a bitmap.
- charspace: allows non-interactive side bearing specification, so
possibly still useful. On the other hand, fontforge allows interactive
specification, and has a very nice preview window for testing side
- gsrenderfont: a shell script that converts outline fonts to bitmaps
at a given size. This is called from TeX programs under certain
circumstances. The version here has long been replaced by the scripts
in the TeX distributions.
- limn: does the actual conversion from bitmaps to splines. These
days, you're much better off using
- bzrto: conversion from the generic homegrown `bzr' (Bezier) format
output by limn to PostScript Type 1, PostScript Type 3, or
- bpltobzr: translate the binary bzr format into an equivalent text
format `bpl' (bezier property list), for editing. Fortunately, a
full-featured free outline font editor, fontforge, has been written
(by George Williams).
- xbfe: bitmap font editor for shapes and metrics; astonishingly, it
seems there are still no bitmap editors for any format except BDF, so
If you have questions or suggestions for the fontutils, please email
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$Date: 2006/03/04 22:53:10 $ $Author: karl $