Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Metafont: the grid

I decided to design the characters at 10pt, as is the norm in Metafont, and on a 10x10 grid, each of 1pt. The baseline rests at two units from the bottom, which leaves a 2pt space in the box for glyphs (signs and characters) hanging below the line. The headline, or headstroke, rests at 0.2 of the 8pt height from the top, leaving a 1.6pt space in the box for glyphs that rest on or go up the headline, even jutting out. After all this, 0.8 of the 8pt height, or 6.4pt, is left for the base form of characters, which might be called x-height in the Latin typography parlance.

The 10x10 unit character box.

The grid layout is partly based on works of other people and partly arbitrary. The height below the baseline, which is depth, is further divided into 10 equal grids and so is the height proper for calculation for glyph drawing. The first Bengali vowel placed on the grid is a blown-up scan from text printed in the nineteenth century.


সুশান্ত বর্মন said...

ভাল উদ্যোগ

farhan said...

any development on the project? is the work complete? very curious!

Palash said...

I also used to think about grid or height/length ratio for Bangla characters. But I had no idea about the grid. Thanks to you for that I learn a new thing.