9 Replies Latest reply: Dec 29, 2013 2:25 PM by Kurt Lang
mrtomstone Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Is it possible to specify font locations? Creating a custom location that would be automatically accessible by all apps requiring access to fonts, as with the several system font folders.

 

Also, if shortcuts to the actual fonts we're placed in the custom font location, would apps still find them?

 

I am thinking of writing a font manager app that will allow its users to create font libraries, and activate/deactivate them to keep their font lists minimal. This is just one of the features but I probably won't be going ahead with it if its not possible.


OS X Mavericks (10.9.1)
  • Kurt Lang Level 7 Level 7 (34,840 points)

    Why waste your time writing a font manager when there's already two top quality titles available? You can download and try both Suitcase Fusion 5 and FontExplorer X Pro for 30 days. Both are leagues ahead of Font Book in functionality.

     

    http://www.extensis.com/suitcase-fusion/free-trial/

     

    http://www.fontexplorerx.com/trial-pro/

  • mrtomstone Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the advice, though I already know about both font managers.

     

    I don't think that adequately answers my question.

     

    It seems that font locations wont be a problem as I should be able to activate and deactivate fonts for the current session using https://developer.apple.com/library/Mac/DOCUMENTATION/Carbon/Reference/CoreText_ FontManager_Ref/Reference/reference.html#//apple_ref/c/tdef/CTFontManagerScope

  • Kurt Lang Level 7 Level 7 (34,840 points)

    I don't think that adequately answers my question.

    It answers every one of your questions. To detail:

    Is it possible to specify font locations?

    The OS already has two specified font locations. The Fonts folder in each user account, and the Fonts folder within the root Library folder. The first allows the user to limit certain fonts for use in their account only. The latter allows all user accounts to use them. What possible need could there be to create yet another folder the OS will automatically recognize?

    Creating a custom location that would be automatically accessible by all apps requiring access to fonts, as with the several system font folders.

    Again, redundant. They already exist. All apps will see any fonts you place in either Fonts folder mentioned.

    Also, if shortcuts to the actual fonts we're placed in the custom font location, would apps still find them?

    Same as above.

    I am thinking of writing a font manager app that will allow its users to create font libraries, and activate/deactivate them to keep their font lists minimal. This is just one of the features but I probably won't be going ahead with it if its not possible.

    Then you'd be reinventing the wheel. That's exactly what the numerous fonts managers which already exist, including OS X's Font Book already do.

  • mrtomstone Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Again, I am grateful for your advice. There is a hint of condescension in your posts but I accept that you are a good person and are probably going through some stressful times.

     

    I had already said that font locations will not be a problem as I can load them in and out of the current session.

     

    WIth all due respect, it is up to me how I spend my spare time, so if I want to design and develop some software for my own personal use (and others if they so desire), it is going to happen, regardless of the wheel.

  • Ralph Johns (UK) Level 9 Level 9 (69,535 points)

    Ummm....

     

    Try here http://www.jklstudios.com/misc/osxfonts.html

     

    Kurt is the person the rest of us (Anyone above Level 6) would ask about this sort of stuff.

     

     

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    9:53 pm      Sunday; December 29, 2013

     

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  • Kurt Lang Level 7 Level 7 (34,840 points)

    No condescension meant. They were just factual answers.

     

    You are of course certainly free to write a font manager if you wish, but for less than $100, you could save yourself the weeks of work writing and debugging an app you can obtain online in minutes. I would imagine that much of your time is worth more than $100?

     

    As a self training and experimentation project, it could still be fun. As you said, it's up to you. But as I noted, why waste your time when there are already long standing apps which already do what you want? If you hope to undercut their prices as a commercial or shareware product, then best wishes to you.

     

    Cheapest price I found for Suitcase Fusion 5 was directly from Extensis for $99.95. Couldn't even guess why Amazon would be charging $111 for the same full version item. FontExplorerX Pro for Mac is $89.

     

    If you do try Suitcase or FEX, do note that the defaults are to store the fonts you add to their interfaces in a file vault. I see no point to that at all. In Suitcase, I set the preference to activate fonts "In place". Which means (as I would guess you aware) that they are activated from any folder or drive the fonts are on. They don't need to be in any specific place at all. You can make any number of sets you want to activate fonts for the project you are doing at the time. Deactivate them when you're done.

  • mrtomstone Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for that, it looks like a must read.

     

    Yes, I accept that, and I am grateful for the help and advice. I wasn't trying to belittle his knowledge in anyway. The fact of the matter is, I didn't ask whether or not I should go ahead with the development, but whether my methodology was possible. It turned out to be irrelevant because I found something far more powerful in some online docs.   

  • mrtomstone Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    It is for a side project, to learn about something, but with a nicely packaged end result.

     

    There are pros and cons for both managed and unmanaged locations but I have to say that personally, I agree with your preference. You can store project fonts in the project directories and activate them from there when you access your project files.

     

    Being a developer that also enjoys design work, I'd quite like to create some bash commands to activate and deactivate font. I accept that this isn't probably the right route to go down if building for designers. 

  • Kurt Lang Level 7 Level 7 (34,840 points)

    Being a developer that also enjoys design work, I'd quite like to create some bash commands to activate and deactivate font.

    While it's been a very long time since I've attempted to write a program, it can be fun (work is fun?) There were a couple of apps I used that did most of what I wanted already, but I wanted to see if I could improve on it, and add features the others didn't have. Even though it took a lot of time and testing to finish, I did (weirdly) enjoy it. You learn a lot more about computers when you have to take the time to understand how they work, and how to make them do what you want rather than always just use what's already available.