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Re: On the meaning of ``single-space'' inter-line spacing

From: Ludovic Courtès
Subject: Re: On the meaning of ``single-space'' inter-line spacing
Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2006 16:55:57 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.110006 (No Gnus v0.6) Emacs/21.4 (gnu/linux)


Michael Piotrowski <address@hidden> writes:

> Well, it seems the spec is not quite as precise as it pretends to be:
> For example, "True-Type 1 fonts are preferred." is nonsense.


> Engineers shouldn't write things like "6-1/2 inches".

Admittedly, this looks weird, but I thought there were good reasons for
writing it this way.  You seem to imply that it's gratuitous weirdness.

> Do they really
> want "Firstname Lastname" for article references and "Lastname,
> Firstname" for book references!?  I could go on ;-)

Yes, indeed.  By ``rather precise'', I meant that they give most
measurements (e.g., column width, column gap, etc.) and type information
(e.g., font size for each kind of heading) that other layout
specifications I read happily omitted.

> As an aside, due to the continued use of the body height (i.e., the
> height of the--nowadays purely hypothetical--lead block on which the
> letter sits) for measuring type instead of measurements which relate
> to the *actual* appearance of the typeface (such as the caps height),
> leading specifications are only valid for *one* specific typeface.
> Different typefaces may have very different caps heights at the same
> nominal type height: It's well known that Helvetica is much larger
> than Times at the same nominal size.  This also applies to leading:
> What may be fine for one typeface, may be too tight or too loose for
> another.

Does that mean that when one selects, say, an 11pt typeface, the highest
glyph in that typeface will be _at most_ 11pt high?

OTOH, AFM [0] defines `CapHeight' as the height of the letter `H' in the
font, `XHeight' as the height of the letter `x', plus the ascender and
descender size.  That would imply that AFM-using programs know only the
actual font height, not that of a hypothetical lead block.  Is this


[0] http://partners.adobe.com/public/developer/en/font/5004.AFM_Spec.pdf

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