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Re: font-backend branch

From: Kenichi Handa
Subject: Re: font-backend branch
Date: Sun, 04 May 2008 09:05:12 +0900
User-agent: SEMI/1.14.3 (Ushinoya) FLIM/1.14.2 (Yagi-Nishiguchi) APEL/10.2 Emacs/23.0.60 (i686-pc-linux-gnu) MULE/6.0 (HANACHIRUSATO)

In article <address@hidden>, Jason Rumney <address@hidden> writes:

> Is depending on the format of the font name returned by frame-parameter 
> widespread?

I don't know, but I got at least one bug-report as attached.

> XLFD has always been a poor fit for Windows fonts, and I am 
> reluctant to make a change like this that might cause users to beleive 
> that XLFD is still the prefered format for font names in Emacs.

I understand your point.

I want to suggest people to move their font handling code
from font-name base to font-spec base (by using such
functions as `font-spec', `font-get', `font-put',
`copy-font-spec').  But, for that, we must at first change,
for instance, the return value of (frame-parameter nil
'font) from string to font-object, and check how that change
influence the other part.   That't the future plan

But, I think it itself is not that bad that a font-object
has an XLFD name propperty.  That is a different thing from
what frame-parameter returns.

Kenichi Handa

From: "Drew Adams" <address@hidden>
To: <address@hidden>
Date: Fri, 11 Apr 2008 11:39:03 -0700
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
Thread-Index: AcicA1CgIP8qo0HoS62ESsbiALonUA==
Subject: 23.0.60; modify-frame-parameters in Emacs 23 for fonts

> From: Stefan Monnier Sent: Friday, April 11, 2008 9:38 AM
> Send it to the bug-tracker, please, if it's not there yet.
From: Drew Adams Sent: Saturday, April 05, 2008 7:18 PM
I'm using this: GNU Emacs (i386-mingw-nt5.1.2600) of 2008-04-04 on
(frame-parameter nil 'font) ->
"-*-Lucida Console-normal-r-*-*-14-*-96-96-c-*-iso8859-1"
   "-*-Lucida Console-normal-r-*-*-15-*-96-96-c-*-iso8859-1")))
(frame-parameter nil 'font) ->
"-outline-lucida console-normal-roman-normal-mono-15-*-*-*-*-*-fontset-startup"
What's that about? In Emacs 20, 21, and 22, the result is just the font I
I have code that zooms frames (font size). I change just the point size in the
font spec, using `x-decompose-font-name' and `x-compose-font-name'. I check that
the result is a legitimate font using `x-list-fonts'. If not, I increase or
decrease the increment until I find the font that works with the closest size.
[Yes, I know there are other ways to adjust font size, but I've found that this
method is flexible for users and provides certain benefits.]
My code no longer works without change, because after one call to
`modify-frame-parameters' the font is no longer something recognized by
`x-list-fonts'. I can comment out the part that iterates until it finds a size
that works (recognized by `x-list-fonts'). That works, but I'm still curious
about this. (Is there perhaps a bug in `x-list-fonts' or in
I couldn't find anything that helps me understand this in the manuals. I haven't
tried to dig through any code. Can someone light my lantern about this?
I looked in NEWS also, and saw something about a font backend (I didn't follow
the threads here about that). But I couldn't find anything in the Elisp or Emacs
manuals about "backend" or "back?end", except for version-control back ends.
A NEWS entry also says this: "the configure option `--disable-font-backend'
(also available as a run-time option)." But I can't find any such option
(variable) with `backend' or `back-end' in its name (except for
`vc-handled-backends'). I see, in both NEWS and in my frames, a parameter named
`font-backend', but I have no idea what it is. For me, its value is
(font-backend uniscribe gdi), FWIW.
Finding the function `fontp' mentioned in NEWS (but not in the Elisp manual,
alas), I also tried that in place of `x-list-fonts'. But it too does not
indicate that "-outline-lucida
console-normal-roman-normal-mono-15-*-*-*-*-*-fontset-startup" is a legitimate
I see font terms in NEWS that I don't see explained in the manual: font-entity
object, font-spec object, font property value. I also see functions mentioned,
such as `font-font', that my Emacs does not recognize. Are they perhaps only for
This whole area is a murky one, for me. Do others feel that this stuff is
explained well enough - in either the manuals or NEWS? Am I the only dummy about
this? Is this is a hidden subject for some secret club? ;-) If not, how about
some explanation?
In GNU Emacs (i386-mingw-nt5.1.2600)
 of 2008-04-04 on LENNART-69DE564
Windowing system distributor `Microsoft Corp.', version 5.1.2600
configured using `configure --with-gcc (3.4) --no-opt --cflags -Ic:/g/include

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