[metapost] Best way to go to outline font from MetaFont

Shriramana Sharma samjnaa at gmail.com
Tue Mar 13 15:35:28 CET 2012

Hello. Thanks to Luigi for confirming that MetaFont queries are OK here.

I don't know how many read my other post regarding my desire to create
fonts for old Indic scripts using MetaPost:
http://tug.org/pipermail/metapost/2012-March/002495.html. Anyhow, I
have been wondering what is the correct tool to use for this.

I thought that since MetaFont was only for raster output, creating
outline fonts should be done using MetaPost which can produce EPS
files which I can then import into my font using a font editor
application. But MetaPost doesn't seem to support penpos commands or
such from MetaFont, which would alter the positioning of the pen when
drawing the glyph.

Today the standard is to use outline fonts only. Therefore is the
MetaFont behaviour of creating raster output any longer useful? The
Computer Modern fonts used by default in TeX -- are they outline or
raster? So has the default MetaFont behaviour been altered to give

There are various papers publicly available regarding creation of
outline fonts from MetaFont sources -- by Piska, Jackowski, Vakulenko
etc. If the MFtoEPS package by Jackowski can produce EPS output
directly from MetaFont sources (with a few commands added) then all
those papers about autotracing MetaFont output are obsolete, right?
And MFtoEPS practically makes the (non-publicly available) MetaFog not
necessary right? Given all those papers, I'm totally confused.

Please someone tell me what is the recommended way to produce
PostScript outlines from a MetaFont program so that I can design
glyphs using MetaFont (with penpos and all) and output them to EPS
after which I will take care of the rest using my favourite font

Thank you very much.

Shriramana Sharma

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