How to use fonts in ConTeXt
The ConTeXt way of handling fonts are TypeScripts. It’s a system of abstraction and aliases, which may seem “strange” at first for new users of ConTeXt.
- If it fits your needs, consider first to use the former Simplefonts module, now in the core as font-sel.mkvi.
- There is now a manual chapter on fonts.
- If you happen to use XeTeX then you can forget almost all the magic and start using your system fonts (see Fonts_in_XeTeX).
- If you use LuaTeX, see Fonts_in_LuaTeX
- If you want to keep using pdfTeX, read on.
Font support & configuration
Type 1 fonts
Type 1 fonts come in multiple files. The various components are:
- .pfb: "Printer Font, Binary".
- .pfa: "Printer Font, ASCII".
- .pfm: "Printer Font Metrics", binary.
- .afm: "Adobe Font Metrics".
Typically each font will have a set of outlines in a pfb or pfa file, and a set of metrics in a pfm or afm file.
Which file variations are preferred depends on platform. Linux prefers pfa and afm (the ASCII versions). Windows prefers pfb and pfm (the binary versions). Mac OS X prefers pfm and afm.
On the Mac, you may encounter old-style PostScript Type 1 fonts which have an extensionless file containing the font outlines. These are a relic from the days when bitmaps were used to display fonts on screen, and the PostScript was downloaded to the printer. Your best bet is to throw them away and get an up-to-date OpenType version, or use a font editing utility such as fontforge to convert them.
On Windows 7, the OS will identify only the .pfm file as the actual font. However, when you install the font, Windows invisibly locates the matching .pfb file from the same directory, and copies them both to the C:\Windows\Fonts directory.
- Using psnfss metrics in ConTeXt
- Matt Gushee's introduction to virtual fonts, especially for getting expert fonts to work.
- URW Garamond
- Lucida : large font family designed by Bigelow & Holmes; suitable e.g. for presentations
- Installing Expert Fonts: Minion Pro by Idris Samawi Hamid; contains step-by-step instructions, from preinstallation to writing typescripts
- Storm Type Foundry : support of selected fonts
True Type fonts
- Integrating TrueType Fonts into ConTeXt by Thomas A. Schmitz (PracTeX Journal)
- Installing a TrueType font, step by step. If you just need to install a TrueType font, this may be what you are looking for.
- Palatino Linotype under MKIV.
How to change to Palatino for text with Euler for math: Palatino with Euler for Math
Some hints by Taco from the mailing list on 2005-11-20:
Q: How up to date or out of date is the information in mfonts manual?
A: It looks like it is still quite up-to-date, but some of the examples it gives may no longer be the very best and latest way of doing things, and possibly there are some new developments that do not get as much attention as desired (like texfont, and the issues arising from font map files). Overall, the document appears accurate, though.
An important thing to remember is this:
ConTeXt does not share font metric conventions with LaTeX.
(at one point it started doing so, like supporting the Karl Berry naming scheme and the PSNFSS style font family names, but that has since been abandoned).
Another important thing is that it also does not share font map files with LaTeX and, specifically,
ConTeXt does not make pdfeTeX read pdftex.map.
(this is at the root of a great many problems reported by users only familiar with PSNFSS)
The preferred format for metric files in ConTeXt is
for metrics and
for the mapping files.
- <fontname> is usually derived from the font source (afm or ttf),
- <encoding> is a 'controlled' list, (see Encodings and Regimes)
- <vendor> and <familyname> are user-supplied (at install time).
There are ways to trick ConTeXt into using different conventions, but if you do that you are likely to run into trouble.
Hints by Language
- font installation with texfont by Pragma
- ConTeXt's font mechanism in detail by Pragma
- ConTeXt basics for users: Font styles by Aditya Mahajan (2007)
- making outlines by Pragma
- Here you can try out several TeX fonts online (PDF interface!)
- Troubleshooting: solving TeXfont problems.
- Character Protrusion (also known as hanging or font handling) is a more subtle typographic effect.
- Font Handling Internals
- Bill McClain's ConTeXt beginners page has also a lot about fonts
- Pseudo Small Caps by Vit Zyka
- Understanding how fonts work in ConTeXt
- Fonts rely on Encodings and Regimes, and it helps to know what happens underneath the hood, from time to time.
- In newer distributions, map files belong in …/fonts/map/pdftex/context!
- Don't forget to look at cont-sys.tex!
Where to find fonts
Available Free Fonts
- EB Garamond is still in development, but it has nice-looking oldstyle numbers.
- Free Math Fonts : overview of different free Math fonts; links to other free fonts
- GFS Didot : Latin, full set of polytonik Greek, small caps, oldstyle figures, full f-ligatures (Module for ConTeXt)
- TeX Gyre : a set of great text fonts by our GUST friends, based on URW's free PostScript standard fonts for GhostScript.
- Foto Alfa : some TeX related fonts from Poland (Antykwa Toruńska. Antykwa Półtawskiego, Kurier, Iwona...)
- Libertine Open Fonts Project: GPL/OFL serif font sample
- SIL International : great Unicode fonts for scholars by SIL (Gentium, Doulos, Charis, etc.)
- GreekKeys : links to polytonic Greek fonts
- Scholar's Fonts : Font for Scholars (Latin, Germanic languages, Greek, Hebrew and Linguistics)
- Junicode : Junius-Unicode, a font for medievalists
- FreeLang fonts : fonts for exotic languages
- Blambot : Comic fonts
- Chank : some free Chank fonts
- FontFace : free fonts
- DaFont : more free fonts
- Divide by Zero : more fonts
- TypOasis : lots of nice fonts, but a bit hard to find (have a look at designers Apostrophic Lab, Manfred Klein and Dieter Steffmann)
- Kristine's Font Organization : find a font in a sorted directory
- FontLover : font news portal site
- Lido : OpenType and TrueType typefaces by Storm Type Foundry, free for non-commercial use. Support.
- Alan Wood’s Unicode Resources : find fonts by Unicode character range
- exljbris Free Quality Font Foundry by Jos Buivenga
- STIX Fonts Beta download of the STIX-Fonts
- Font Squirrel Handpicked free fonts for graphic designers with commercial-use licenses
- The league of Moveable Type : a collection of open source fonts
- 65 Popular And Professional Free Fonts For Creative Typography and 52 Really High Quality Free Fonts For Modern And Cool Design
- : Public fonts for minority languages of Russia sample
- ... many more to be added ...