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Old 08-25-2019, 12:47 PM   #1
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lack of monospace / fixed width font

I was wondering if anyone knows why the Kobo doesn't have a monospace font. I'm not implying or asking for a fix, just curious if anyone knows or can speculate why they don't provide one. It seems like such a glaring oversight.
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:03 PM   #2
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Well, the Kobo devices are designed to display books, and almost no print books are typeset in monospaced fonts.
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:25 PM   #3
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Well, the Kobo devices are designed to display books, and almost no print books are typeset in monospaced fonts.
Well, that's certainly true. But with older public domain books you might set parts of a book in a monospace font, for example, a telegram, a typewritten letter, etc.
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:32 PM   #4
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Well, the Kobo devices are designed to display books, and almost no print books are typeset in monospaced fonts.
Additionally, technical books, specifically ones about html, css, programming, etc. use monospace fonts extensively. Although in their case I'm sure they use embedded fonts.

For the stuff I'm doing, public domain books, there have been telegrams and typewritten letters, where it would have been nice if there was a provided monospace font. I could embed a font but one of my goals is to make books that are small, so I don't include images or embedded fonts. And although it's not a top priority, it's also nice if they work on old Kindles that use the old MOBI7 format, which doesn't support embedded fonts; although with monospace on old Kindles maybe the monospace comes out correctly; I haven't checked.

Last edited by lumpynose; 08-25-2019 at 10:35 PM.
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:48 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by RobertJSawyer View Post
Well, the Kobo devices are designed to display books, and almost no print books are typeset in monospaced fonts.
Several books I've read recently used monospace for text messages. Why I'm not sure but likely it looks more computerish.

Then there have been several books such as Andy Weir's The Martian where the computer generated and operating system messages used a monospace font.

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Old 08-26-2019, 01:40 AM   #6
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One of the patches (see https://www.mobileread.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=320410) allows you to use monospace fonts without embedding. So just drop in your favorite monospace font, enable and configure the patch and enjoy

Last edited by dmapr; 08-26-2019 at 01:51 AM.
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Old 08-26-2019, 03:26 PM   #7
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One of the patches (see https://www.mobileread.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=320410) allows you to use monospace fonts without embedding. So just drop in your favorite monospace font, enable and configure the patch and enjoy
Yes, that's why I said "I'm not implying or asking for a fix, just curious if anyone knows or can speculate why they don't provide one." In my case since I'm making ebooks I'd rather see what others see, others who haven't patched their ereader.
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Old 08-26-2019, 03:29 PM   #8
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Well, the Kobo devices are designed to display books, and almost no print books are typeset in monospaced fonts.
Another rebuttal to that argument would be the inclusion of italics and bold; no books are typeset entirely in those, just the usual bits here and there.
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Old 08-26-2019, 03:54 PM   #9
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This also reminds me of another of my peeves which is that there aren't any fonts that have the three faces as a font family, designed to work together; serif, sans serif, and monospace. If you use Courier with the usual suspects, e.g., Times Roman, it's too large and needs to be sized down.

Adobe's font Source Pro would do, except that it's too weak and wispy on my computer screen and probably similarly unsuitable for an ereader. But it is open source and free so Amazon, Kobo, etc. could use it as a starting point for a decent ereader font.

https://github.com/adobe-fonts
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Old 08-26-2019, 04:26 PM   #10
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DejaVu Font: Serif, Sans Serif and Mono: https://dejavu-fonts.github.io/Download.html

(in Mono and Sans the Italic is called Oblique, may create problems to Kobo?)

I have found also : Nimbus 15 and Noto

https://tug.org/FontCatalogue/alphfonts.html#N

And in the Latex catalogue font may be there are many, I don't know if there is something useful for ereader but all fonts are free so You can experiment:

https://tug.org/FontCatalogue/

Last edited by ps67; 08-26-2019 at 04:52 PM.
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Old 08-26-2019, 05:24 PM   #11
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Yet more examples. I wish Amazon and Kobo would get off their duffs and use them, as a starting point at least.
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Old 08-26-2019, 11:52 PM   #12
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Another rebuttal to that argument would be the inclusion of italics and bold; no books are typeset entirely in those, just the usual bits here and there.
A weak rebuttal, my friend. No books are typeset entirely in capital letters, either -- just the usual bits here and there. But all books DO employ capital leters, and vast numbers of books DO employ italics and bold, while very few employ monospaced fonts.
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Old 08-26-2019, 11:55 PM   #13
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If the book requires monspaced fonts to display special content, such as computer listings or telegrams, the requisite fonts can be embedded in the book and called for those sections; again, virtually no books use monospaced fonts for the main body text, and its fonts for mail body text that the Kobo lets you select from the dropdown menu.

https://kobowritinglife.zendesk.com/...in-your-eBooks
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