LinuxPlanet: .comment: Ain't Anti-Aliasing Amazing?
Dec 27, 2000, 13:25 (7 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dennis E. Powell)
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"That's because for a little over a week now, all the buzz in
KDE circles has been a series of hacks designed to enable the text
anti-aliasing provided, sort of, in XFree86-4.02. The KDE mailing
lists were bursting with delighted testimonials from persons who
had gotten this marvel running...."
"That was last Friday. It is now Monday night. I've been working
on this during the majority of my waking hours. I'm given to
understand that there has been a holiday mixed in with all of this
someplace, and I vaguely remember seeing relatives who visited from
California for the entire weekend. I didn't see a lot of them, and
my mood was such that I suspect that my rarity was in answer to a
hastily composed Christmas prayer.
"Anyone who has ever used any other operating system on any
machine anywhere knows that in the field of typeface handling,
Linux is in last place. And it's not close -- Linux has been lapped
several times. There is no place where Linux shines in this regard:
Its screen fonts are pretty bad. Its facility for adding new
typefaces could be made worse only by requiring the user also to
design the typefaces. And there is no common typeface repository
from which all applications draw -- many bring their own along,
like the guest who brings his or her own food and bedding knowing
that that's the only way they'll be provided. As to
printing...well, I suspect that there's a substantial body of Linux
users who have given up entirely on the idea of printing, and
another that has given up on the idea of printing anything that one
would show to anyone else. (Yes, it's possible. No, it's not easy,
and for this the distributors are to blame. Maybe they could
provide a workable and easily understood print engine instead of
packing up a really terrible and incompatible alpha compiler. Red
Hat, this means you. Though Caldera, my distribution of choice, is
scarcely blameless in the printing department, having settled on
lprng instead of the understandable lpr.)"
"Text anti-aliasing is a step, albeit a small one, in the right
direction. It is supposed to produce palatable screen fonts and to
ease the adoption of various character sets, notably Unicode. These
are worthy goals. Insofar as KDE is concerned, however, four days
of sheer hell tell me it just ain't soup yet."