Asian Language & Alphabet Support for Fonts

Special support for right to left alphabets on simple left to right display systems.

Special support for diacritics and ligatures.

Creating Fonts for many languages

Create text optimized fonts for all languages supported by Windows Unicode character fonts.

IconEdit supports 3 different types of alphabets for international fonts



Simple left to right alphabets

Simple left to right alphabets with predefined diacritics and ligatures

Simple left to right alphabets with predefined diacritics and ligatures.

This includes Latin, Cyrillic & Greek characters and Chinese, Japanese, and Korean ideograms.

Unicode defines all glyphs (character shapes) in this alphabet group.

The characters can be included in the font based on the required alphabets or languages, and they can be written directly to the display.

Middle Eastern right to left alphabets

Middle Eastern right to left alphabets with predefined diacritics and ligatures

Middle Eastern right to left alphabets with predefined diacritics and ligatures.

This includes:

  • Arabic.
  • Hebrew
  • Mandiac
  • N'Ko
  • Samaritan
  • Syrian
  • Thaana
  • Urdu

Unicode defines all glyphs (character shapes) in this alphabet group.

The characters can be included in the font based on the required alphabets or languages.

Even though the texts should be read from right to left they are stored from left to right in Windows, so before writing to the display, the character order has to be rearranged.

In the case of Arabic, the characters also have to be changed to special presentation characters. The presentation characters are glyphs that have other shapes to enable the correct connection of the characters.

South Asian alphabets

South Asian alphabets with a high number of diacritics and ligatures

South Asian alphabets with a high number of diacritics and ligatures.

IconEdit has support for:

  • Assamese
  • Bengali, BodoDogri, Buginese
  • Devanagari
  • Gujarati, Gurmukhi
  • Hindi
  • Kannada, Kashmiri, Khmer, Konkani, Kusunda
  • Lao
  • Maithili, Malayalam, Marathi, Meitei, Myanmar
  • Nepali, Nihali
  • Odia, Oriya
  • Punjabi
  • Sanskrit, Santali, Sindhi, SinHala
  • Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Tibetan

Unicode only defines basic characters and diacritic glyphs for these alphabets.

A useful font can not be based on the required alphabet or language alone but has to be created for a specific text.

Create fonts for any alphabet

Create Fonts for all three alphabet groups directly from texts. Read or paste any number of texts, in this case, the Devanagari text astronomy “खगोल शास्त्र“.

South Asian font for alphabet with Separate Characters and Diacritics

This is the resulting text optimized font for the text “खगोल शास्त्र”. The auto-generated combined characters are in the Unicode private area at E700...F8FF.

South Asian text with auto-generated Combined Characters and Diacritics

The text is automatically displayed with the optimized font.

Create Fonts for Simple and Middle Eastern Alphabets and Languages

In these alphabet groups, Unicode defines all character glyphs so you can create Fonts directly from a language list:

Language selector for one or more of over 100 Languages for a font

Select the necessary number of languages. Check what is already there by white highlighting.

Or select alphabets:

Selector for almost 200 Unicode Alphabets and Symbol ranges for a font

Select the necessary alphabets and symbols. Check what is already there by white highlighting.

Create Character Fonts for Simple and Middle Eastern Alphabets

In these alphabet groups, Unicode defines all character glyphs. The characters can be selected individually in IconEdit to create a font.

Select characters Individually with the Mouse to make a font

Select characters Manually with the Mouse to make a font

Select characters manually with the mouse.

Create Fonts for South Asian Alphabets from Texts

In this alphabet group, Unicode only defines basic characters and diacritic glyphs.

Use IconEdit to create the missing character glyphs. The new characters are a combination of basic characters and their associated diacritics.

Thai Basic characters defined by Unicode converted to pixels directly

Thai Extended characters not defined by Unicode but combined with diacritics and then converted to pixels

Read or paste any number of texts, in this case, Thai. The new characters are in the Unicode private area at E700...F8FF.

Preparation of Texts for display

Use IconEdit to match texts to fonts. Then display complex alphabets on a simple left to right text display systems.

Simple alphabets

Use texts as they are, or, for languages written with Latin characters, save as UTF-8 to reduce ROM space.

Middle Eastern alphabets

Use IconEdit to rearrange texts for display.

  • First, each text segment is divided into subgroups according to the reading direction.
  • In the case of Arabic, most characters are then substituted by their presentation character.
  • Next, the subgroups are mirrored according to their reading direction.
  • Finally, the subgroups are recombined so the text can be shown on a left to right display system.

An Example: This is how Arabic texts, numbers and matematical signs are stored left to right in the computer:

Arabic Text is Stored Left to Right but should be Displayed Right to Left

The text is converted by IconEdit for the correct right to left reading order on a left to right display by an Arabic font with presentation characters:

Arabic Text is Stored Left to Right but Displayed Right to Left

Most characters are substituted by their presentation character before the text mirroring, numbers are not mirrored, and mathematical symbols are changed.

An Example: Arabic text is stored in a C-string from left to right as basic characters, but displayed from right to left by an Arabic font with presentation characters:

C string preprocessor for Emoji and Asian textsArabic written left-to-right and displayed right-to-left

Arabic presentation characters change shape according to their position in the word. As the text is written as basic characters on the top line the displayed presentation characters on the bottom line change shape to fit their neighbors.

Southern Asian alphabets

Southern Asian alphabets are stored as combinations of basic characters and following diacritics.

In IconEdit they are converted to combined characters during the creation of the font.

This is how Asian texts are stored in a computer:

Devanagari written with separate basic characters and diacritics before combination

The text is converted by IconEdit for correct display:

Devanagari as it is Displayed with combined basic characters and diacritics

Combinations of basic characters and diacritics are combined to one character.

Asiatic Text Support More about the C string pre-processor for Emoji and Asian texts.



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