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Old 03-13-2014, 08:08 AM   #1
verydeepwater
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Baskerville Font not appearing on Kindle e-ink

I wonder if anyone can help with this anomaly on embedded fonts. I have embedded a number of fonts including Baskerville into an ebook. All the fonts appear fine on the epub version and also with the mobi version on a kindle fire. But on an e-ink kindle the Baskerville font appears as strange hieroglyphics. The other embedded fonts appear as they should. When I to turn off publishers fonts on the the e-ink device, all the text appears normally in the default font - indicating the problems with Baskerville.

For some reason the Baskerville font is not working on the e-ink devices. the font I am using is a free version of Baskerville from Google Fonts. I would be grateful if anyone could advise as to what might be happening and offer a possible solution.
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Old 03-14-2014, 06:44 AM   #2
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Unfortunately, there's a bug in the firmware of eInk Kindles that causes some fonts to be displayed in a distorted way.

You'll have to find another similar font that eInk Kindles will display.
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Old 03-14-2014, 10:34 AM   #3
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Thanks for your help.
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Old 03-14-2014, 06:02 PM   #4
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Perhaps some conversion would help?
When I open libre baskerville in typetool 3 (fontlab lite) and than save it (generate font) I get strange error:
"The feature file OS/2 overrides TypoAscender and TypoDescender do not sum to the font em-square."

Nice Baskerville version, though.
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:29 AM   #5
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What kind of conversion do you think would help.
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Old 03-17-2014, 07:44 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by verydeepwater View Post
I wonder if anyone can help with this anomaly on embedded fonts. I have embedded a number of fonts including Baskerville into an ebook. All the fonts appear fine on the epub version and also with the mobi version on a kindle fire. But on an e-ink kindle the Baskerville font appears as strange hieroglyphics. The other embedded fonts appear as they should. When I to turn off publishers fonts on the the e-ink device, all the text appears normally in the default font - indicating the problems with Baskerville.

For some reason the Baskerville font is not working on the e-ink devices. the font I am using is a free version of Baskerville from Google Fonts. I would be grateful if anyone could advise as to what might be happening and offer a possible solution.
May I ask, which e-ink Kindle, precisely? Kindle, Kindle2, early K3 or DX, or do you mean the Paperwhite?

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Old 03-17-2014, 05:27 PM   #7
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peculiar font - with serbian/croatian digraphs - rare kind.
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Old 03-21-2014, 04:51 AM   #8
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May I ask, which e-ink Kindle, precisely? Kindle, Kindle2, early K3 or DX, or do you mean the Paperwhite?

Hitch
It was kindle 3.
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Old 03-24-2014, 08:39 PM   #9
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If fonts look distorted, my money is on the common stem values being off, resulting in bad auto-hinting. You should open it in a font editor and recalculate the common stems, the alignment zones, and all of the typographical dimensions. Then make adjustments so that the family-specific line spacing values are consistent across the entire font family (assuming the calculated values aren't already identical, which they often are).

The difference between the ascender and descender values, in particular, should always be the UPM size (em square). For example, if the ascender is 750, and the descender is -250, the UPM should be 1000. Adjust one or the other. Make sure that all three values are consistent across the entire font family.

I'm assuming you're using Libre Baskerville? Fontographer suggests 761 as the Ascender, -239 descender, 240 as the line gap. So the specified descender value of -270 is plausible, but the specified ascender value of 970 is dubious, given the UPM of 1000.
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Old 03-25-2014, 04:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgatwood View Post
If fonts look distorted, my money is on the common stem values being off, resulting in bad auto-hinting. You should open it in a font editor and recalculate the common stems, the alignment zones, and all of the typographical dimensions. Then make adjustments so that the family-specific line spacing values are consistent across the entire font family (assuming the calculated values aren't already identical, which they often are).

The difference between the ascender and descender values, in particular, should always be the UPM size (em square). For example, if the ascender is 750, and the descender is -250, the UPM should be 1000. Adjust one or the other. Make sure that all three values are consistent across the entire font family.

I'm assuming you're using Libre Baskerville? Fontographer suggests 761 as the Ascender, -239 descender, 240 as the line gap. So the specified descender value of -270 is plausible, but the specified ascender value of 970 is dubious, given the UPM of 1000.
I can now confirm this issue with Libre Baskerville on several of the Kindle devices, including PPW and K3. PPW view (this is a screenshot from Previewer just because it's easier, but it's the same on the device) attached.

Dgatwood:

I don't know if this is a stem value issue. (I'm not yet at the point where I can adapt fonts. I'm still only halfway through Bringhurst.) Honestly, it's a bit odd that it looks fine on all other devices (Fire, HD, etc.) but goes utterly wonk on two of the e-ink KF8 devices. We'll investigate, but..I thought that the OP might want to know that our shop has just encountered this, also, just this day. We've confirmed this on real device testing, to include the Keyboardless (the K3 replacement sans Keyboard, whatever they are calling that now).

We are testing on this now; this is the first book in which we've encountered this issue for a Baskerville font. We have seen similar things with some other fonts, but this one, on this font, is new to us.

Hitch
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Old 03-25-2014, 05:30 PM   #11
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UPDATE:

Not to thread-hog, but we reconverted the LB font, and it is now working.

To verydeepwater: Strongly recommend you reconvert the font. We did not even change the common values; we simply reconverted it. It's working fine now on all devices.

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Old 03-25-2014, 06:52 PM   #12
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Not to thread-hog, but we reconverted the LB font, and it is now working.
What tool and parameters did you use to convert the font?
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Old 03-25-2014, 07:47 PM   #13
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What tool and parameters did you use to convert the font?
Well, this is embarrassing. BUSTED!

Because we are big time perfess'nal bookmakers, we tried something easy first: we used "everythingfonts.com." (No. I'm not making this up). We thought we'd see if there was a quickie, before we essentially redesigned and redid the font, and by Jove, to my everlasting surprise (okay, at least through dinner), it worked.

{shrug}. No secret sauce on this one.

ETA: I tried this because I recently had to convert one of my videos for HTML5, so that it would be responsive on all browsers. My Camtasia studio makes great MP4, but not so great .mov formats, surprisingly, and I also needed .ogg and .webm. I used, I kid thee not, an online converter, as an experiment, and bygolly, it worked *fabulously.* The .mov format was actually BETTER than what I could get from Camtasia directly. So, when we encountered this, Barb thought, "what the hell," and tried an online converter for the font, and as I said, damned if it didn't work, and the font looks GREAT on the devices. No screwing around with fontforge, no adjusting the values, nada. Zip, zein zilch, kablammo, it worked.

Hitch

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Old 04-03-2014, 02:10 AM   #14
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Worth consulting the font authors? I had a less extreme problem with the font in an ePUB and it seemed to relate to the type of outlines in the file. I ended up using and OTF file with TTF outlines.
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Old 04-03-2014, 05:48 AM   #15
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Worth consulting the font authors? I had a less extreme problem with the font in an ePUB and it seemed to relate to the type of outlines in the file. I ended up using and OTF file with TTF outlines.
Seanos:

It may well work in ePUB, but Kindle's mobi format is a strange beast when it comes to fonts. I didn't see any reason to consult the font's creators. We 'fixed' it for our use, and if they are interested, certainly, we'll tell them what our experience was with it, but obviously, we're not the only ones who've run into it.

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