Noto font for Plasma 5.5

Harald Sitter sitter at
Mon Oct 19 07:55:17 UTC 2015

On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 8:38 PM, Eric Hameleers <alien at> wrote:
> On Fri, 16 Oct 2015, Jonathan Riddell wrote:
>> On Fri, Oct 16, 2015 at 10:38:58AM -0700, Eric Hameleers wrote:
>>> On Fri, 16 Oct 2015, Jonathan Riddell wrote:
>>>> The Plasma team plan to switch to Noto for Plasma 5.5
>>>> Distros will need packages of it. Let me know if anyone has problems
>>>> with this
>>> Almost 500 MB download for these fonts? I surely hope that you only
>>> want to use a small subset. I will have a problem in Slackware
>>> otherwise - 500 MB add-on just for some fonts will meet with a veto
>>> in the distro.
>> I think that's the source for the complete set.  The Latin languge set is
>> under 1 MB and the complete set minus CJK is 13MB as packaged in Ubuntu.>
> The 469 MB ZIP file contains 131 TTF fonts and 36 OTF fonts - no source,
> only actual fonts.
> I think it will be good if you are *very* specific about the exact Noto
> fonts you expect distributions to carry.

All of them. It's not really easy to come up with a very specific list.

CCing Eike since he is the resident expert on fonts.

Unfortunately we don't have a blog post on detailing the reasons
behind wanting Noto yet, but those 500mb are essentially the cost of
supporting every major language/character set in the world. Making the
entire Noto collection a pretty complete and consistent font.

Different languages have different alphabets/scripts/calligraphic
forms. Some of them have a common base (e.g. Latin alphabet) but even
then they have differences (think french accents versus german
umlauts), others are more or less standalone (e.g. Naskh), and another
language would use a syllabary script and employ a logographic script
to extend it (e.g. Katakana/Hiragana -> Kanji).

Which languages a distribution wants to support is up to the
distribution really. And as such the fonts a distribution needs to
ship is a result of which languages to support. If you want to support
a given language you should also provide a font for the typeface(s)
used by that language. If you want to support japanese typefaces you
need to ship Noto CJK JP (or the super-CJK font file), if you want to
support Nastaʿlīq script you need Noto Nastaliq Urdu, etc.

At the bare minimum you will need Noto Sans and Noto Serif as those
provide latin1. Since en_US is our core language we ought to be able
to render at least that in the font face we expect. Within a given
typeface subset you should generally provide all weights provided for
that subset i.e. you want to keep bold/regular/light/demilight/... of
CJK JP in one "package".

Ideally you'd be able to offer the Noto version(s) suitable for all
our languages so that a user who wants to use kde-l10n-ko can also
install noto-cjk-kr to get full korean support. So, technically we
want all the fonts. Unless kde-l10n-* is installed all the time we
don't need all the fonts installed all the time though. Noto Sans and
Serif gives you all latin and greek script based typefaces thus covers
generally everything that long enough was under european control to
adopt a latin or greek script as a national script (i.e. EU/NA/SA/most
of SEA/most of Africa).

- Package Noto Sans and Serif to cover latin scripts to cover most of
the world out of the box
- (Maybe package Noto Emoji as well because emojis are cool)
- Package other typefaces if you find them useful for your target
audience. If you don't you probably also shouldn't provide the
languages that use them though :P
- Unfortunately we have no list of scripts employed by our supported
languages at this time, maybe we should ask i18n to maintain one
moving forward?


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