A container to include Composite Font Representation XML and the component fonts

suzuki toshiya mpsuzuki at hiroshima-u.ac.jp
Sat Feb 25 05:05:17 CET 2012

Dear SC29/WG11 font AHG experts,

I want to hear the comments about an idea of a ZIP-like container
to include Composite Font Representation XML and the component fonts.
Especially, it would be useful or not, it is meaningful to make some
standards in ISO/IEC 14496 system or not.

For first, please let me describe a background. My understanding
of CFR is following:

* a composite font described by CFR is expected to be looking as a single font.
In other words, the user may expect that when a CFR XML file is passed to the system,
a ready-to-use font instance will be returned without any preparation for the component fonts.

* CFR uses the PostScript name of the face as an identifier of the component font.

Thus, to provide the expected feature, the processor of CFR should
have a modern font management system; that knows what kind of fonts are
installed in the system, that can search and retrieve the data of the
installed fonts by the PostScript name of the face.

I think some small systems does not have such modern font manager,
some of them may identify the font by the pathname (if they have a file system)
and search a font resource by PostScript name may cause huge works.

For such systems, using a container including CFR XML and component fonts
might be a candidate of the option to reduce the cost to construct the
composite font instance. If such container is useful, I think a ZIP-like
container would be the candidate. It is now becoming a defacto standard
around XML related field to pack the XML referrer and the referred data,
as OOXML, ODF, EPUB. I heard that SC29/WG11 is also interested in the
standardization of such format.

# although I prefer more legacy archive formats like AR, PAX, CPIO, TAR,
# I'm sure that the promotion of them will fail.

But, there might be some viewpoints against using a container for CFR,
something like, "Parsing CFR XML is already difficult for small systems,
so packing the required resources in single container does not help them".

Please give me your comments about the idea "the container for CFR and its component".

suzuki toshiya, Hiroshima University, Japan

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