Minion Pro and Serbian localized glyphs

AleCes's picture

First of all I didn't find a "New Users" forum so I just wanted to say hello everybody first.
Now, back to my question: I use Minion Pro with XeLaTex in order to get Serbian localized glyphs which otherwise neither OpenOffice Writer nor Microsoft Word would provide me with. But I get a tight kerning when the letters u+0423 CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER U and u+0431 CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER BE meet each other. Please notice that the tight kerning only happens with the localized Serbian glyph, while the standard (Russian) one doesn't show any kerning problem.
I attached a .pdf with the relevant example. Could you please suggest me a way to solve this annoying flaw in an otherwise wonderful font?
Thank you everybody.

AttachmentSize
Glyphes serbes & russes.pdf7.68 KB
jdaggett's picture

Do you see similar rendering problems in Firefox 4 beta? Firefox 4 beta supports language-specific OpenType glyph selection. For more info see:

http://hacks.mozilla.org/2010/11/firefox-4-font-feature-support/

I included a Serbian example to demonstrate this.

AleCes's picture

Thank you for answering me, jdagett. I'm experiencing a problem of kerning, not of rendering. Rendering & kerning work wonderfully with, say, Constantia. Furthermore, the sample text you provided me with didn't include the relevant combination of characters (u+0423 CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER U and u+0431 CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER BE).
Anyhow, I'm glad to learn that at last we'll get a browser compliant with OpenType. At the Serbian Wikipedia we have long awaited for a solution that would make it possible to display the correct Serbian glyphs without resorting to non-standard proprietary fonts. Still, unfortunately support for Serbian glyphs is lacking in the world of free fonts, and MinionPro, one of the best candidates for usage in the Serbian Wikipedia, deceives us with such a gross flaw!!!

Igor Freiberger's picture

Hi Alessandro. Welcome to Typophile. I did open Minion Pro (both versions 2.68 and 2.30) in FontLab and the kerning setting seems to be correct. Although there is a negative kerning, it is adequate to the glyph pair and far from the collision we see in your PDF:
.


.
I also did a test within InDesign and it seems to run ok:
.

Sorry not to test in XeLaTex, but I don't know it.
.
So I believe you may be using an older version of Minion Pro with a small bug in kerning table or there is some setting in XeLaTex which is causing this.

AleCes's picture

Wow Freiberger!!! Your kerning is correct!!! My version is the one included with AcrobatReader: 2.068 and dates 2004. Maybe yours, 2.34 and 2.68 are later, commercial versions? I hope not because at the Serbian Wikipedia, now that Firefox 4 will support OpenType, were interested in adopting MinionPro as standard font in order to correctly render Serbian glyphs but such kerning flaws do cast a shadow on an otherwise excellent font.

Igor Freiberger's picture

I was not aware Acrobat Reader ever provided Minion Pro. The 2.30 version was included in Fontfolio 11 (2007) and the 2.68 version came with Adobe CS5 (2010). Although it's commercially available, it will also be installed with any trial of Creative Suite 5. I found my old version 1.1 file, from 2000, and it does not includes uni0431.ital (version 2.68 has 443 more glyphs than version 1.1).

If you plan to use it at web, the new technologies to embed fonts would allow your users to see the updated version – so the problem will not occur. If you need it for print, you can edit the font and fix the kerning (Adobe EULA permits it) or simply get an updated file.

AleCes's picture

Version 2000 was the first version I tried and it its implementation of OpenType was particularly buggy and fickle. It did contain the Serbian glyphs but not in the expected position, therefore XeLaTex triggers didn't work so the glyphs at issue had to be accessed manually... a mess. Version 2004 ships with Acrobat Reader 9 and is way better but apparently still has kerning flaws. Does it constitute an offense if I ask you to mail me the 2010 version? Obviously only if the font can be freely distributed.
It is difficult for me to install a Windows program like CS5 because I actually use Ubuntu 10.10 and Wine (the compatibility layer) is a disaster as far as Creativity & Office programs are concerned.
Anyway, thank you for having rescued me: now I know I just need an updated font.

Igor Freiberger's picture

Sorry, but the CS5 license does not permit to freely distribute the fonts included in the package. You may use them just during the trial period.

AleCes's picture

You don't have to excuse yourself at all. Thank you anyway.

AleCes's picture

OK, I got it, the problem lies in Latex, not in the 2004 version of Minion Pro. I tried with Pango View in Ubuntu 10.10 and 2004 version of Minion, I processed the given input (u+0423 CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER U and u+0431 CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER BE) and I got a correct kerning, no flaws, everything is all right! So, Latex is to blame here.

schmidhauser's picture

Quick correction—the version numbers alluded to by Freiberger should be 2.068 and 2.030 (see http://www.adobe.com/type/browser/html/readmes/MinionProReadMe.html).

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