[Fontinst] Multiple Master Fonts and the Width Axis

Christopher Adams chris at raysend.com
Thu May 13 10:18:40 CEST 2010

Hello all,

I am curious about the feasibility of installing Multiple Master Fonts with
fontinst for use in pdfLaTeX, in particular to make variants available for
font expansion by the microtype package.

I have a firm grasp of the type tools used to generate custom instances
(mmafm and mmpfb), and it appears straightforward to install MM instances
using the traditional {series}{shape}{size} parameters supported by fontinst
and font definition files.

What I don't see support for in fontinst is MM instances generated along the
width axis for use in font expansion.

Following the example that Hàn Thế Thành gives in his Font Expansion with
pdfTeX article, instances meant for use in font expansion have a +5, +10,
etc. appended to the font name. Thus, Minion MM Roman at 12 points with 2
percent expansion is named pmnr8a12+20.pfb.

Can fontinst be used to install these MM instances for use in font

For reference, I have pasted the relevant passage from Thành's article


= = = = =

Multiple Master Fonts

Only Multiple Master with a width axis can be expanded. The idea is to
create a new instance with the width value increased by the expansion
amount. The following example shows how to create a Multiple Master instance
and a variant expanded by 20 thousandths:

mmafm --weight=400 --optical-size=12 --width=535 --output pmnr8a12.afm

mmafm --weight=400 --optical-size=12 --width=545.7 --output pmnr8a12+20.afm

The magic number 545.7 comes from the expression 535 × (1 + 20/1000 ), which
means that we increase the width value of the base instance by 20

The PFB font files are created in a similar way. Afterwards the AFM can be
converted to TFM using afm2tfm:
afm2tfm pmnr8a12.afm -T
   texnansi.enc pmnr8y12.tfm

afm2tfm pmnr8a12+20.afm -T
   texnansi.enc pmnr8y12+20.tfm

Similar to Type 1 fonts, only the entry for the base font is needed in map

pmnr8y12 MinionMM_400_535_12_
   <texnansi.enc <pmnr8a12.pfb

Using font expansion Suppose that given a font, we know how to create
expanded versions of that font. Now let us try an example:

\pdffontexpand \f 20 10 5 1000
Some text..
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