Author Topic: Making the smart quotes work  (Read 5032 times)

Ahmad Osman

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Making the smart quotes work
« on: 2010-01-22, 08:10:28 »
In my fount, I created both dumb quotes and smart ones (id est, I activated the 'quotedblleft' and the 'quotedblright' glyph compartments as well as the 'quotedbl'). When I test the fount on InDesign, however, only the dumb quotes appear while typing. I can force the smart quotes to appear through alt + [ and its variants.

I don't like this, because the 'use typographer's quotes' option is switched on and working with the other founts I have.

Searching through the forum, I fell upon an archive conversation (entitled 'Quotation marks... ?') about this very subject, in which Mr. Twardoch says that 'The user will need to key them [smart quotes] in separately, either through some keystrokes or character codes. Some applications replace the character codes of plain quotes by those of the "smart quotes" or "typographic quotes", but this does not have anything to do with fonts.'

Assuming that this does not have anything to do with fonts, but rather with the application, and given that my application (InDesign) seems to be making the replacement whenever smart quotes exist, why is it not doing this with my fount?

Alex Petrov (FontLab)

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Re: Making the smart quotes work
« Reply #1 on: 2010-01-22, 08:25:00 »
I would first check the names and Unicode codepoints for these glyphs. Then I would make sure General Punctuation was checked in FontInfo>Encoding and Unicode>Unicode ranges.
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Alex Petrov
Fontlab Ltd.

Ahmad Osman

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Re: Making the smart quotes work
« Reply #2 on: 2010-01-23, 02:17:35 »
The names and Unicode codepoints were fine, but indeed I did not have the General Punctuation box checked.
After checking the latter box, however, my quotes are still dumb. Any other measures you would recommend, or shall I send you the file?

gmayer

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Re: Making the smart quotes work
« Reply #3 on: 2011-05-19, 18:14:06 »
Why not create automatic substitution (in OTF) to replace two consecutive `` with an matching open quote, and two consecutive '' with a matching close quote?

Mayer

Franfonter

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Re: Making the smart quotes work
« Reply #4 on: 2014-04-15, 11:00:49 »
Hi there,

I am currently building custom photofonts and have come up against the same issue. This thread has been useful so in pointing out the problem I am having, that being smart and dumb quotes. I need to activate the smart quote (quotedblleft), but can't quite figure it out.

In the end, did anybody ever crack this nut? What came of this topic?

Thanks!

Thomas Phinney (FontLab)

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Re: Making the smart quotes work
« Reply #5 on: 2014-08-27, 09:50:06 »
Franfonter:

The answers are in the messages above.

1) Check glyph names and encoding
2) Verify that correct Unicode ranges and codepages are checked

I note the suggestion of making the quote marks work through an OpenType feature. There are only two problems with this:

A) It would violate the character/glyph model, where OT features should not change the encoded character (unless one also added unencoded smart quotes via the OT features)

B) There are literally dozens of different variants of how different languages work smart quotes and which marks they use. Some for example reverse what English speakers expect to be right and left quotes. In a properly made font, every one of these would need to be supported. Any layout engine smart enough to do OpenType is likely already doing language-specific smart-quote substitution at text composition time.