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Re: [Groff] ASCII Minus Sign in man Pages

From: Ralph Corderoy
Subject: Re: [Groff] ASCII Minus Sign in man Pages
Date: Wed, 03 May 2017 14:50:04 +0100

Hi Branden,

> A quick experiment with -Z shows me that groff does still today load
> the S [special] font when the \(pl and \(mi character escapes are
> used.

Yes, my list email from earlier today lists the PostScript glyphs:

> It's not a no-op on a PostScript device, but I note no _visual_
> difference.

That's odd.  It's a noticeable difference here, even sticking with the
default Roman.  Also, + and \(pl vary similarly.

    $ cat
    .ds b \(rs
    .ds m \N'45'
    \*m -. \*bN'45' \N'45'. \*b\*m \-. \*b(mi \(mi. + +. \*b(pl \(pl.
    $ groff >
    $ gs -q -r600 -sDEVICE=pnmraw -sOutputFile=- \
    >     -dTextAlphaBits=4 - < |
    > pnmcrop -quiet |
    > pnmmargin -white 10 |
    > pnmtopng -quiet -compression 9 >minus.png

Visible at

The PostScript is using Symbol for \(mi and \(pl.

    /F0 10/address@hidden SF
        2.5 (--)72 12 S
        2.5(.\\)-2.5 G
        (N'45' -.  \\- \255.  \\\(mi)-2.5 E
    /F1 10/Symbol SF
        (-)2.5 E
        2.5(.\\)-2.5 G
        (\(pl)-2.5 E
        (+)2.5 E
        (.)A 0

Cheers, Ralph.

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