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Old 10-29-2017, 08:38 PM   #16
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Thank you for sharing your kind and funny jokes.

Let me remind you that in a free world there exists something called the freedom of choice. I did not write these two pieces of software, but I think their authors who provide freely their work deserve better than some absurd sniggers. I even wish some of you sincerely to be as computer savvy as them.

So what?

Linux Libertine.

I chose it for two reasons: first because it's my reading font of choice (I agree here with doubleshuffle and I doubt we may be alone). Second because I wished to provide an example and needed for that to use a font family with a permissive license (here GPL) which allows to rename and modify these fonts.

The subset tool.

If you have complex technical questions about it, I am sorry to be unable to answer them because I am not one of the authors but feel free to contact them. You nevertheless can test the EPUB text display on your ebook readers. I shall also point some facts and differences that may interest some users:
- I found that the Calibre subset tool could not work with the Chinese ttf font STSong (15,4 MB). pyfysubset did it in a split second. I cannot attach this Chinese font here because I do not know its license.
- I found when dealing with Linux Libertine that the Calibre subset tool produces on average subsets which are about three (ttf fonts) or four (otf fonts) times bigger than the ones produced with pyftsubset. Feel free to make your own experiments.

Not a real subset

I have been told that:
Quote:
The problem here is that Calibre's editor doesn't differentiate between regular, bold, italic, & bolditalic. So you don't get proper subsetting. You get get such by using the Calibre to do the subsetting.
I am afraid you are wrong on this one. It happens that I already asked precisely Kovid Goyal if he used for his subset tool a tailor made list of italic, bold, etc. characters (https://www.mobileread.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=291401). He does not. So, the same global list of characters is also processed several times...

From there, it does not mean that pyftsubset is a superior technique. Just that it deserves to be further tested, and it's only what I propose to do.

A slow technique

For the time being, the technique used for producing this subset is obviously slower than the one used with Calibre. I hope you are aware that this thread belongs to a workshop and that the current method is not to be used for ever.

For example, if somebody from the Sigil team shows later some interest in it, it's will be an easy task to make a plugin out of it or even to integrate it exactly the way it is with the Calibre editor. The list of characters is already produced both by the Calibre editor and Sigil. After that you just need to launch a single command for each font... It's really a basic stuff.

Please, forgive me if I spoiled the party. Follow on please, some of you were joking about square wheels...

Last edited by roger64; 10-29-2017 at 09:24 PM.
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Old 10-29-2017, 10:37 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roger64 View Post
I am afraid you are wrong on this one. It happens that I already asked precisely Kovid Goyal if he used for his subset tool a tailor made list of italic, bold, etc. characters (https://www.mobileread.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=291401). He does not. So, the same global list of characters is also processed several times...
No, that is not what I said. I said that the reports tools has no report about bold/italics characters. Font subsetting in calibre most defintely makes use of styling information. As is trivially deducible by a quick experiment. Simply use a font family that for some text without any bold or italic variants and watch a font subsetting will remove the the bold and italic variants of the font, entirely.
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Old 10-29-2017, 10:58 PM   #18
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@Kovid

OK. Thanks for setting the record straight. That was an unintended misunderstanding of mine.

What's your opinion about pyftsubset (and fonttools)? sherman was complaining about the scarcity of documentation.

The fact that I do not know how to do it now, does not mean it cannot be done tomorrow using a technique similar to the one Kovid uses. The processed list is just an argument feeding pyftsubset and does not disqualify itself as a subset tool.

Last edited by roger64; 10-29-2017 at 11:24 PM. Reason: opinion
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Old 10-30-2017, 03:12 AM   #19
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No idea, never tried them. Things to be wary of:

1) Does it handle opentype advanced features. For example, a font could have a rule to replace the glyphs for ff with the ligature for the two. So a font subset tool has to include both the glyphs for f and the special ligature glyph for ff. Otherwise, display will break on some rendering engines.

2) Does it subset only the glyph table or other tables as well. calibre's font subsetting will subset only the glyph table (since this is where most of the size comes from). If pyft subsets other tables, does it do so in a manner that does not break rendering with common renderers.

I have no idea whether pyft has either of these problems, but these are typically the things font subset tools get wrong.
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Old 10-31-2017, 03:22 AM   #20
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Thanks for these points. I hope some expert will be able to sort this out regarding pyftsubset.

For the time being, I modified the top posts of this thread to add that, due to the fact that we make it work currently with a single list of characters, pyftsubset can provide a size saving advantage if the book use only both regular and italic fonts. This advantage could be greatly reduced, even nullified, if we had to include bold and bolditalics fonts.
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Old 01-22-2018, 09:15 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roger64 View Post
A slow technique

For the time being, the technique used for producing this subset is obviously slower than the one used with Calibre. I hope you are aware that this thread belongs to a workshop and that the current method is not to be used for ever.

For example, if somebody from the Sigil team shows later some interest in it, it's will be an easy task to make a plugin out of it or even to integrate it exactly the way it is with the Calibre editor. The list of characters is already produced both by the Calibre editor and Sigil. After that you just need to launch a single command for each font... It's really a basic stuff.
This day arrived. The plugin SubsetFonts - Simple font subsetter has been published.

Once the plugin has been installed, creating a subset of all existing fonts (otf, ttf, woff...) of one EPUB is as simple as just launching the plugin from the Sigil plugin menu.

Currently the subsets are built only again the main list of characters produced with the GlyphIgo library. For this reason, it will probably provide you with a size saving advantage if you limit its use to regular and italic fonts.

For those who may be interested, the fonttools team published also the pyftinspect tool which allows you to check technically the font or the subset.
Code:
pyftinspect <myfont>
This plugin will hopefully later be completed with another tool allowing to build the subset again dedicated list of characters (italic, bold, ..). Research is on its way, Any idea welcome.

Last edited by roger64; 01-22-2018 at 10:58 PM.
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Old 04-19-2018, 04:57 AM   #22
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Hi

It happens that the two existing subset tools, not only work on their own, but also can complement each other. The tool of the Calibre editor uses one list of characters for each font and suppresses unused fonts. The Sigil plugin uses a single common list of characters but produces more compact subsets.

This is what happens when you combine them to make them work successively on the same ePub, begining with the Calibre editor (v. 3.21) and concluding with the Sigil plugin (v. 0.2.0.). This example comes from a rather big book.

The font used is an OpenType fork of Linux Libertine which has been darkened for ebook display using the very nice Sherman script (see at the beginning of this thread).

Looking at the second screenshot, you can see that significant size savings can still be obtained.
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Old 04-21-2018, 07:34 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roger64 View Post
Hi

It happens that the two existing subset tools, not only work on their own, but also can complement each other. The tool of the Calibre editor uses one list of characters for each font and suppresses unused fonts. The Sigil plugin uses a single common list of characters but produces more compact subsets.

This is what happens when you combine them to make them work successively on the same ePub, begining with the Calibre editor (v. 3.21) and concluding with the Sigil plugin (v. 0.2.0.). This example comes from a rather big book.

The font used is an OpenType fork of Linux Libertine which has been darkened for ebook display using the very nice Sherman script (see at the beginning of this thread).

Looking at the second screenshot, you can see that significant size savings can still be obtained.
How do these compare to FontShrinker, which stands alone, and does not use Calibre, et al, as its basis? I didn't see this mentioned, along the way, which I thought was odd, but ...I'm sure everyone has their own process. While we've certainly used Calibre, due to the reality around ligatures, I'm much more inclined to use FS.

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Old 04-22-2018, 04:05 AM   #24
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Hi Hitch

My point was not to test every subsetter under the sun (but anybody can do it at wish) but simply to document what happens when we combine in the right order the subsetters of the two main ePub editors we have here (Calibre and Sigil).

Like you, I'll be happy to read comparative results taking into accounts other subsetters.
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Old 04-22-2018, 05:39 AM   #25
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While we've certainly used Calibre, due to the reality around ligatures, I'm much more inclined to use FS.
AFAIK, there are no mainstream epub2 apps that actually support ligatures (and other OpenType features). What apps/readers do you use to test ligatures?

Is there a ligature bug in the Calibre subsetting code? If so, you might want to report it to Kovid, if you haven't already done so. (When I reported a font subsetting problem with Arabic fonts a couple of years ago he fixed it the same day and the fix made it into the weekly Calibre build.)

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Old 04-22-2018, 03:02 PM   #26
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AFAIK, there are no mainstream epub2 apps that actually support ligatures (and other OpenType features). What apps/readers do you use to test ligatures?

Is there a ligature bug in the Calibre subsetting code? If so, you might want to report it to Kovid, if you haven't already done so. (When I reported a font subsetting problem with Arabic fonts a couple of years ago he fixed it the same day and the fix made it into the weekly Calibre build.)
Doits:

The problem or challenge isn't ePUB readers. AFAIK. We had an unpleasant surprise with a book that we made for a client. The client chose a font that uses ligs (ligatures--I'm a lazy typist, b/c I just do so damn much of it.) Anyway, long story short, it ends up on Amazon, as it goes. But, wait, what to my wondering eyes should appear? MISSING letters. Not just missing letters--missing pairs of letters.

It took a while to sort out what must have happened. Amazon ASSUMES that the LITB will be in Georgia font. Because it's in Georgia, they use all the available characters--including ligs. Ligs that are NOT in the original book. Because, as you point out, nothing makes use of them, right? But, if you've embedded font X, and for whatever reason, your font makes it into the LITB (don't ask me why some do, some don't, I have ZERO idea), and you've subset it with any of the usual suspects, KABLAMMO, the ligatured letters will disappear, because the subset font doesn't have any ligs remaining. (n.b.: I discussed this with Toxaris, and he's tweaked FontShrinker, so that Ligs are included now, BTW.) Right?

So, you create a book without included/typeset ligatures, but with an embedded body font. The client puts it up on Amazon. For reasons that aren't clear, the embedded font remains in the LookInside (which normally, it does not). Amazon assumes that it's using Georgia, and uses ligatures wherever they are typically used. But the subset body font doesn't have ligatures, because they were removed when you subset it.

Net result: the book displays on Amazon, in the embedded body font--but without the Amazon-assumed ligatures.

That's the issue. Since Toxaris was kind enough to adjust FS to include ligs--so that I don't have to get ulcers about every book in which a client requests an embedded body font (and BEFORE any of the self-appointed eBook police feel that they have to add their $0.02, yes, of course, it's overridable. We don't impose the body font on the reader.)--that's what we use now.

Suffice to say, that was a nice dash of cold water in our faces. I nearly fainted, to be honest, when I saw the cursed thing on the LITB. At first, I couldn't quite figure out, "What the...?" but after staring at it, and realizing that the missing characters were all ligs, the rest of the deduction was easy, Watson. :-D

So, that's the why, Doits. It's not a bug; it's just set to work the way it should work (the Calibre subsetter) for ePUBs. But in the cosmic scope of th eBookverse...well.

Hitch

Last edited by Hitch; 04-22-2018 at 03:03 PM. Reason: typo/incomplete thought, which is typical on my big Sunday off, lol.
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Old 04-22-2018, 09:43 PM   #27
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Here are some basic user comments.

When using fonttools (namely pyftsubset), OpenType features are preserved with the embedded font. See the joint screenshot of a pdf file made by Prince from an ePub3. You can spot the words "affaire" (twice) and "Quelles" (the Q with a long tail). As Doitsu said, it does not mean that they will be displayed with every reader, but, up to now I did not spot any two-letters "hole".

My use case revolves around this. I willingly recognize that I do not care if every feature of my ePubs cannot be downgraded to Mobi level but that does not imply that it cannot be done, just that I did not try it (though I own a Kindle, I read only ePubs and PDFs using Koreader).

For your information, here is a link which further details the use case for pyftsubset. It tells that ligatures are preserved.

If you wish to check by yourself -which is always a good idea-, here are the fonts I've used for these trials (resources.zip). The regular, italic, bold and bolditalic fonts are forked from the 5.3 version of Linux Libertine (and of course share the same license). The joint SC variant, that I use for convenience purposes, comes from a subset I obtained using FontSquirrel some years ago. You can forget it.
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Old 04-22-2018, 09:56 PM   #28
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calibre font subsetting most definitely preserves ligatures as well.
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Old Yesterday, 12:58 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
calibre font subsetting most definitely preserves ligatures as well.
@Kovid:

No interest in arguing with you, at all, as I defer completely to your abilities, but they weren't preserved as a matter of course. Presumably, you mean that if ligatures are used, they are preserved--which makes perfect sense. The whole issue at Amazon was that we did not use ligatures, and thus, they weren't preserved in the subsetting--and needed to be. Thus, FS works better for me and my company, because we can preserve them particularly when not used, just in case Amazon bones us again. :-)

@Roger: Well, it's your tool, and I'm glad it works for you. I don't have the luxury, obviously, of determining where our books will be used/read/uploaded, etc. so I have to prepare for even the weirdest contingencies, as described.

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Old Yesterday, 03:19 AM   #30
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No, if a character X is used then all ligatures in the font that involve that character are automatically preserved.
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