----- Original Message -----
From: "Mark Simonson" <[log in to unmask]>
> * No shortcut to display the current glyph in the Metrics window (though
> can do the reverse).
FontLab 4 will have a marvellous dockable Preview panel. It uses FreeType to
preview the glyphs there: the previews have beautiful anti-aliasing, the
preview quality is very high. You'll be able to use @ as a placeholder for
the current glyph in that window. You also can drag glyphs to that panel.
> * No undo in the Metrics window. You have to switch to a Glyph window of
> affected character to undo spacing changes.
Indeed, this is a major shortcoming.
> * No shortcut to jump to a character in a Glyph window by typing it.
I use Ctrl+BkSp, glyph name, enter. Quite handy.
> * The default action of opening a character in an already open Glyph
> is annoying.
I was always annoyed by the huge number of glyph windows in FOG. I prefer
the way FL does it. You can always do "Edit in new Window". This is, in
fact, similar to the way hyperlinks work in Internet Explorer.
> In fact, it lead me to mistakenly believe that only one Glyph
> window could be opened at a time.
It's probably only because you just switch from FOG. There is no reason why
FontLab should mimic FOG in all aspects.
> * Not being able to tell at a glance which characters have been modified
> since the last save.
That is, indeed, a good point.
> * Print previews are limited and not hinted. Outlines are apparently sent
> the printer as straight graphics (as opposed to creating a temporary
> Printing is also much slower.
I must admit that I never used print previews from any font editor (I prefer
scripts written by myself), but reportedly, printing has been vastly
improved in FontLab 4.
> * No Metrics/Kerning Assistant.
In FontLab 4, there is no comparable FOG-like Metrics or Kerning assistant,
but there will be very powerful tools for class-based kerning. You will be
able to export the class-based kerning directly to OpenType fonts, or
convert them to traditional kerning.
> * No Bitmap editing.
There is a very handy bitmap editing tool in FontLab 4, bundled with the
TrueType hinting tool.
Reportedly, FontLab Ltd is working on a new program which will be focused on
font bitmap editing.
> On the other hand, I can see that once one is beyond the design and
> stage, FontLab is by far a more powerful and useful program, particularly
> for character encoding and hinting. The manual contains some of the
> explanations of these topics I've seen as well.
> Now that I'm over the hump, I have to say I like FontLab, though I can't
> it completely replacing Fontographer as it is. However, as some have
> suggested here, the two programs really do complement each other, and I
> see that, at least for now, they both belong in my toolbox.
I think you should enjoy FontLab 4's drawing interface. There has been much
improvement since version 3, with a completely new Sketch tool included. I
like drawing in FontLab, especially since I discovered the Interpolate
feature. Also, if you draw on paper and scan, you should take a look at
ScanFont. Along with the new Optimize outline features, you geat really
impressive tools for converting bitmaps to outline glyphs.
It has been stressed several times already, but let me repeat this. FontLab
4 will be first released for Windows, and it seems that the release date is
relatively soon. The Mac version will follow, but the timeframe is yet
I think FontLab 4 will rule the planet. :)