On Sat, Jul 23, 2005 at 05:27:16PM -0400, Jeff Spaleta wrote:
Its very hard to talk about rendering issues unless we build up a
flipbook of screencaptures that show the differences between different
package builds in a standardized way. I suffer from the same
I either was the original poster complaining about font rendering or I
replied to the original poster. I was going to answer to your request
for a screenshot when I would have had access to my Rawhide system
again, at the end of the day, but I was satisfied with Owen's reply, so
I didn't produce any screenshots. Plus, I don't use standard fonts, so
my report would have been not so easy to reproduce.
Anyway, I took the last screenshot I had for the system, dating back to
August 28th 2003, and compared it to today's Rawhide. I am not sure what
was in Rawhide on that day, but you can see some differences. You can of
course point out that pretty much every package on the system has
changed between the two screenshots. Heck, even the browser is not
exactly the same: Mozilla vs Firefox. Same for the themes used.
The image with the screenshots side-by-side can be found at
(you probably want to
look at it on an LCD screen because of subpixel rendering)
On the left, the desktop before Cairo. On the right, the desktop after
Cairo. Compare for example the text "Applications".
The first difference I notice with Cairo is that subpixel smoothing for
LCD screens is never applied, no matter what the settings. Second, text
seems to look smaller now, probably because Cairo seems to ignore the
DPI settings. Even making the default size one point larger to
compensate for the difference, the text rendering quality is not as
good as it was. Third, some sort of hinting seems be always at work,
again ignoring the font preferences. With the font I use, ITC Officina
Serif, rendering is much better when no hinting is applied.
Look at the "T" in "Telescope" on the right. Or look at the
"9" in "87
of 96 comments". It's horrible. At lower point sizes, it gets even worse
and it becomes barely distinguishable from a 0. I really noticed this
while doing online shopping. What was actually a price of $199.95 looked
to me as $100.05 instead. Thankfully, I noticed something funny with the
rendered text before I placed any orders under the impression of having
found a real bargain. ;)
I know that this is Rawhide after all and that the Cairo/GTK folks are
aware of the issues involved. So I won't be complaining again until
FC5t1 is 304 weeks away.
What you say seems to call for some program that can automate the task
of rendering parts of the GUI in a reproduceable fashion, in order to
spot any regressions. Does anything like that exist? It would be nice to
have such a tool. Ideally, it would be fed Glade files or something
along those lines. It took me way too long to doctor that image in the
GIMP, it should rather be a matter of minutes or even seconds.