by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2006/12/09 01:56 -08:00, original URI: http://blogs.msdn.com/michkap/archive/2006/12/09/1245128.aspx
I heard from Cristian Secară from Romania again not too long ago:
First: thank you for your feedback regarding the Windows Keyboard Layouts page (your blog on 05 November).
Second: Tudor pointed me out, and then read on your blog (your blog on 19 November) about the European Union Expansion Font Update for Romanian and Bulgarian. One thing I want to add here: although the covered fonts are ok for physical written documents (and thanks to MS for that !), there is at least one more important font required here: Verdana. This is required for virtual written documents (i.e. internet). Just from the early days of RC 1 beta testing I encountered discussions on forums, where some are saying something like "hey, look, Vista has the new keyboard layout included, I am using it right now !", while the answer was something like "hey, stop using it, we have difficulties in reading your post". Why ? Because the originator used Vista to write his post and the reader was on XP, so the ș and ț appeared as blank squares to the reader.
There is nothing unexpected about that user behaviour giving the existing situaton, but if a font update is on the way already, why then not complete the picture starting from right now ?
Some points here (my own speculations):
- it may be important that existing XP users will not be disapointed about the new Vista, just because one single important font update is missing; I mean if the average XP user without much knowledge will see blank squares in messages written by Vista enthusiasts, they may have a bad influence in convincing others that Vista has "problems" with the Romanian language; again, in short term this may be an expected behaviour, but why not complete the fix if the fix has been already
started in some way ?
- it would be fine if Verdana is updated, because this can lead to write and read pages in correct Romanian as quick as possible; I know this will be a long process (months/years), but why not start from right now ?
Verdana is the most used font for web pages, at least, today in XP. I consider an update to this font to be equal in importance like the Arial and Times New Roman requested by EU. I am speaking for Romanian, I don't know what font the Bulgarian sites uses for most ...
PS: I told to Tudor that the minimum font update should be Arial, Courier New, Times New Roman and Verdana, perhaps Georgia too; but I can live for now just with Arial, Times New Roman and Verdana update :)
Well, I suppose I could claim that as soon as I connected with Judy of the Microsoft Typography PM team that my extensive authority and influence led to everyone dropping what they were working on and providing an update to the update to include Verdana.
In truth, when I mentioned this mail to her, she let me know that they were already working to update the update to include Verdana.
And it is now available!
You can check out the updated European Union Expansion Font Update (which still has neither Romanian nor Bulgarian translations of the download page available but I continue to hope for the future!), a download that not only includes
Times New Roman (regular ȘșȚțЍѝ, bold ȘșȚțЍѝ, italic ȘșȚțЍѝ, and bold italic ȘșȚțЍѝ)
Arial (regular ȘșȚțЍѝ, bold ȘșȚțЍѝ, italic ȘșȚțЍѝ, and bold italic ȘșȚțЍѝ)
but now also includes
Verdana (regular ȘșȚțЍѝ, bold ȘșȚțЍѝ, italic ȘșȚțЍѝ, and bold italic ȘșȚțЍѝ)
(I still owe several posts here about the Romanian letters and keyboards, and will be getting to them soon!)
This post brought to you by Ș (U+0218, a.k.a. LATIN CAPITAL LETTER S WITH COMMA BELOW)
# Centaur on Saturday, December 09, 2006 11:00 AM:
Is the Verdana Combining Characters Bug fixed in this update?
# Michael S. Kaplan on Saturday, December 09, 2006 1:20 PM:
I don't know, but I would tend to guess not if I had to, given that this was a targeted release to fix a specific problem? It is easy enough to check, especially since a test is built right into that wikipedia page....
Though that problem is addressed in the Vista version of the font, for sure.
# Cristian Secară on Sunday, December 10, 2006 12:53 PM:
# Tom Gewecke on Sunday, December 10, 2006 8:09 PM:
Does the Vista Romanian keyboard layout work for both ANSI and ISO keyboards? Apple somehow managed to put s-comma on the key which ANSI does not have, requiring US users to download an alternative.
# Michael S. Kaplan on Sunday, December 10, 2006 8:58 PM:
I am not sure what you mean by ANSI/ISO?
# Tom Gewecke on Sunday, December 10, 2006 11:31 PM:
ANSI keyboards are used in the US. ISO keyboards are used in Europe. ISO keyboards have an extra key between the left shift key and the Z key. Plus there is the JIS keyboard for Japan. At least it is this way with Macs.
# Michael S. Kaplan on Sunday, December 10, 2006 11:49 PM:
We generally call those 101 vs. 102 vs. 106 key, not ANSI or ISO (since Europe has different layouts across the continent, calling it just ISO would be strange?). :-)
But to answer your question, the new keyboards did not stick any letters on only the "102nd" key.
# Tom Gewecke on Monday, December 11, 2006 8:37 AM:
I think you are right - the ISO/ANSI terminology is confined to Apple's classification of its hardware (number of keys, not layouts, which differ depending on the country where the product is sold). Thanks for the info on the MS terms.
# Michael S. Kaplan on Monday, December 11, 2006 8:57 AM:
One of the very first validations we added to MSKLC was to point out when characters were on that 102nd key but nowhere else (since it would mean some hardware would not be able to type the character).
# Michael S. Kaplan on Monday, December 11, 2006 9:14 AM:
The Apple Terminology is interesting here though, Tom. I wonder if that ever causes them problems or confusion?
# Si on Tuesday, December 12, 2006 5:28 PM:
>Though that problem is addressed in the Vista version of the font, for sure.
This is the Vista version of the font family, plus the missing Romanian characters which were *not* in the Vista version - hence the package now being kind of useful on Vista.
# Cristian Secară on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 8:03 AM:
> This is the Vista version of the font family, plus the missing
> Romanian characters which were *not* in the Vista version -
> hence the package now being kind of useful on Vista.
The fonts included in the update for Romanian and Bulgarian are the XP ones with six glyphs added, NOT the Vista ones. The Vista fonts have all the required glyphs already, at least the ones for Latin languages (I don't know how to name them, I mean not the ones for Arabic, for example).
One proof for this is that the XP fonts have the glyphs for U+0162 and U+0163 with cedilla below (which is wrong and caused a whole bunch of confusions over time), whereas the Vista fonts have the glyphs with comma below (which is correct, finally). The XP-like glyphs are still present in the font update.
# Cristian Secară on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 9:23 AM:
> One proof for this is that the XP fonts have the glyphs for U+0162 and U+0163 with cedilla below (which is wrong and caused a whole bunch of confusions over time),
Ahm, no, I made a mistake here (can be corrected live ?) ... the XP fonts have the glyphs for U+0162 and U+0163 with COMMA below (which is wrong etc.
The rest is ok. Sorry ...
# Cristian Secară on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 9:32 AM:
... and the rest of my phrase also has another mistake: it should be "... whereas the Vista fonts have the glyphs with CEDILLA below (which is correct, finally)."
I am most likely old and tired if I can make such mistakes ...
# Si on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 1:57 PM:
>The fonts included in the update for Romanian and Bulgarian are the XP ones with six glyphs added, NOT the Vista ones
I was talking about Verdana.
# Judy on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 2:59 PM:
Actually, Cristi, the Arial and Times New roman are the XP fonts with the 6 additional code points. The Verdana is the Vista font with the Bulgarian code points added (it already had the Romanian). I struggled with the page details as to what would be enough info and what would just cause additional confusion :-)
# Cristian Secară on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 3:52 PM:
> I was talking about Verdana.
Um. Yes, you are right: Verdana from the fonts update is the same as the Vista one + the two additional characters required for Bulgarian.
Therefore, we have here a BIG problem: (1) the Verdana font delivered with Vista misses the glyphs for U+040D and U+045D; (2) the font update is claimed to be Vista compliant; (3) the Arial and Times New Roman from the font update are the XP ones, with 6 more glyphs; (4) the Arial and Times New Roman from Vista contains approx double number of included glyphs.
In order for a Bulgarian Vista user to benefit from the updated Verdana font, in case of installing the package "as is", that user will effectively downgrade its Arial and Times New Roman fonts !
A workaround may be to extract only the Verdana family from the font update and overwrite by hand the four Verdana .ttf files on Vista system (and then reboot). But, hmm ...
Any comment here Michael ?
# Michael S. Kaplan on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 4:44 PM:
Actually, the install process will not downgrade the fonts -- it will only update the ones that are of a lower version number.
# Cristian Secară on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 5:34 PM:
Oh, I understand / I forgot about this installer feature. It should be the version that appears when looking at the file property with the Font properties extension installed, not the one that appears when double clicking the font.
2007/05/08 Update⁴ for Romanian and Bulgarian
2007/01/28 Stealth features (like language detection?)
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