Browse Prior Art Database

Dynamic and Customized Printer Font Installation

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000108106D
Original Publication Date: 1992-Apr-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-22
Document File: 4 page(s) / 150K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Carter, KE: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

There is a need for a dynamic and customized method to support the multitude of printer fonts available on IBM and OEM PC printers.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

Dynamic and Customized Printer Font Installation

       There is a need for a dynamic and customized method to
support the multitude of printer fonts available on IBM and OEM PC
printers.

      New printers and new printer fonts are being introduced to the
PC marketplace much faster than specific software can be written to
support them.  For this reason, most applications have evolved to a
"generic" font support approach for printers.  This approach
typically assumes that a user has a printer of a certain type with
ALL the supported fonts.  This approach allows more printers to be
easily supported; however, since there are no standards for printer
fonts, the user loses usability and function.
1.   Usability Problems:
     Users are consistently confused with the "generic" printer
support approach in the areas of:
      - terminology
        -- what is the font called
        -- what character set is supported for the font
      - specific characteristics
        -- where is the font located
        -- when is the font available
        -- which font elements can be used at the same time
      - interaction with the application
        -- how to access a font
        -- how to use multiple fonts

      The "generic" support documentation often reads more like a
programmers flowchart (e.g., if you are using Printer A, Model B or
Model C with the switch setting set up for Character Set D and you
have purchased the Font Package E, then the fonts available are Fonts
F, G, and H...).  The user must understand their printer well enough
to know when and how a font can be used and which font elements can
be used at the same time.
2.   Function Problems:
      The "generic" approach must often make trade-offs on function
in the areas of:
      - defaulting (what font will be used if the font requested is
not available)
      - initiation (how is the font initiated)
      - selection (which fonts can be supported)

      Using the "generic" approach, an application has no way of
knowing what fonts are available for the current configuration so it
always assumes that the font requested is available.  This approach
forces the printer to perform the defaulting.  Unfortunately, all
printers do not use a standard algorithm, so it is difficult for an
application to tell their users what to expect.

      Inconsistencies on how a single font can be initialized occur
even on a single printer.  For example, the control sequence to
select Helvetica 10 point Bold as an internal font may be different
than the control sequence to select the same font on an external
cartridge.  In this case, the generic approach would force a trade
off to be made.  Only one form of the font could be supported due to
the different initiation control sequences.

      The "generic" approach must also must make trade-offs on font
support, due to size restraint...