Re: [apps-discuss] font/* (and draft-freed-media-type-regs)

"Martin J. Dürst" <duerst@it.aoyama.ac.jp> Fri, 18 November 2011 07:52 UTC

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Date: Fri, 18 Nov 2011 16:51:53 +0900
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To: "Levantovsky, Vladimir" <Vladimir.Levantovsky@MonotypeImaging.com>
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Cc: "gadams@xfsi.com Adams" <gadams@xfsi.com>, Ned Freed <ned.freed@mrochek.com>, David Singer <singer@apple.com>, "apps-discuss@ietf.org" <apps-discuss@ietf.org>
Subject: Re: [apps-discuss] font/* (and draft-freed-media-type-regs)
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Hello Vlad,

On 2011/11/16 8:22, Levantovsky, Vladimir wrote:

> In fact, SC29/WG11 is in the process of finalizing a new application (as part of the ISO/IEC 14496-22:2009/Amd.2 work) where we decided to apply for a new "application/font-sfnt" type using additional optional parameters to specify types of outlines and advanced layout mechanisms supported by a font. Doing so allows creating a flexible and extensible (albeit slightly cumbersome) mechanism to identify any SFNT-based font using same MIME type definition for a number of font flavors combining either TTF or CFF outlines with any currently known layout engine support (e.g. OpenType, AAT or SIL). Under the circumstances, this seemed to be a pragmatic way to compensate for the lack of "font" type.

I have no idea about the details involved, but what you say here about 
optional parameters sounds rather dangerous to me.

Setting parameters correctly on Web servers, while in theory not too 
complicated, turns out to be quite brittle and impractical in many 
scenarios. Even the base media type often isn't correct.

What you call a "flexible and extensible (albeit slightly cumbersome) 
mechanism" may turn out, in actual practice, to be highly cumbersome, 
confusing, and rarely used.

Again, I have to admit that I'm not familiar with the details, so if for 
example these parameters are only advisory and in practice things work 
perfectly well even if they are not used, then it might be less big of a 
deal.

Can you give use a bit more information to help understand the 
trade-offs involved?

Regards,   Martin.