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8+3 char. limit on font names
You're right that a fontname mapping file has disadvantages.
But 8 characters is not nearly enough. If the PostScript fonts
were design-sized properly, many of their names (according
to my scheme) would be longer than 8 characters, and it's
not hard to imagine them getting longer. I don't
think it's possible to compress more information into
a rational scheme than what mine does, and mine is not
enough. I sent a revised article to TUGboat with all
the new abbreviations, and some discussion of the problems
that have cropped up. It's also on ftp.cs.umb.edu [184.108.40.206]
in pub/tex/fontname (or did I already post this to this list? I've
The main advantage to mapping, I think, is that then documents
are more likely to be portable across sites, despite
the different naming conventions at different places. Of course,
this will only be true if everyone is using the mapping file!
By the way, I asked Knuth if a TeX that did do fontname
mapping could still be called TeX (in a letter also
expressing my appreciation for 3:16, a book I recommend to
you all, if you haven't seen it!). No answer yet.