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Re: [ft] With Freetype 2.8 my desktop looks bad

From: Sebastian Lisken
Subject: Re: [ft] With Freetype 2.8 my desktop looks bad
Date: Sun, 21 May 2017 10:51:13 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:52.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/52.1.1

Hello Werner, thanks a lot – your reply gave me the pointers I needed.
My display does indeed use the de facto default of 96 dpi (as determined
via xdpyinfo | grep dots). 9,75 was the right size to get a display
close to what I was used to. It wouldn’t have occurred to me that I
could set fractional values. It did seem, though, like some programs
might not be handling the fractional correctly as some fonts in their
windows looked noticeably smaller than before. (One example is my
graphical package manager, Octopi.) I got more consistent results by
keeping the font sizes at 10 and setting the text scaling factor, which
is a separate setting offered in Gnome, to 0.975. I am aware that this
will surely affect all sizes where I need it only for my favoured size
of 10, but I can live with that as 10 is the only size I’m using in the
GNOME font settings.

So do I understand correctly that the key for an even display is to
arrive at some integer (any integer) for the measure you call ppem?

I was able to understand the issue better by using quantity calculus on
your formula

>   13ppem * 72dpi / 96dpi = 9.75pt

after I slightly change the units (I think your choice of dpi after 72
has to be changed for correctness, the other units I am only making more
explicit), which gives me:

  13 pixels per em * 72 points per inch / 96 pixels per inch
  = 9.75 points per em

and ppem / points per em is then related to the size setting in the
Tweak Tool, which makes sense (10 pt plus leading).

> So it seems that `Arch' is another distribution that used FreeType
> < 2.8 unmodified...

Out of curiosity: would it have been advisable for distributions or
users to apply some patch?
Thanks again!


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