CJK and roman script font pairing

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rmgim1
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CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by rmgim1 » 2014-07-09 05:58:53

I may once have known the answer to this question but, if so, I've forgotten it: How does one pair a particular roman script font with particular Chinese and Japanese fonts so that when I switch from typing English to typing in Chinese or Japanese I get the precise Chinese or Japanese font that I wish?

Apologies if the answer to this question is so obvious that the question should not have been asked, but I seem to be stumped.

martin
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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by martin » 2014-07-09 10:53:52

If you're used to Nisus Writer Classic (back from the old Mac OS 9 days) things will be quite different now. When using Nisus Writer Pro (NWP) the best strategy is to work by applying the proper language attribute to each piece of text in your document. The language attribute works just like any other formatting (fonts, colors, etc); you can have multiple languages applied in your document. Please see this FAQ topic on how to change the language.

Once you have the proper language assigned to each piece of your document, NWP can take care of all the rest automatically. Each language has a variety of language sensitive options it can enforce, like the spelling dictionary and keyboard layout. One of those options is a "switch font" option that can achieve your goal.

With that background information out of the way, here's the direct answer to your question: you'll want to configure your language preferences for Chinese and/or Japanese so they enforce the desired font. When you work in your document and want to start writing some Chinese or Japanese, just switch the language and have NWP adjust the font and other options accordingly.

I hope that answers your question. Please let us know if you need any more help.

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by js » 2014-07-09 16:03:40

I would answer your question somewhat differently. In fact what you ask is badly documented by Apple. The direct answer is: you cannot choose a combination of a specific Western and CJK script. If your main language is Western and you intersperse occasional Chinese text, what you do is: choose only the Western font. If you insert Chinese, Apple choses a suitable Chinese font for you. Suitable from an aesthetic point of you. It is not always the same the Chinese font paired with Times is not the same as the Chinese font paired with Helvetica, f.e.
To apply a proper language attribute to each chunk of text, one for Western one for Chinese, is of course possible. But I wonder if anybody does it. This is time consuming and of little use: there is no Chinese spell checking in OS X. On the other hand, if you want to look up a Chinese word in the dictionary, just go ahead: the software knows that you are looking up an asiatic word even if the icon on the base says Times or Helvetica.
If you are not happy with the Asiatic font paired with the western font you chose, wait until you finished, do a Find All with “AnyHan” and apply the asiatic font of your liking. Or apply a language attribute with a Chinese font, as Martin advises you.
If you mainly write Chinese and western is secondary, you can also proceed from the other end: Start by choosing a Chinese font and see which Western font Apple found suitable to go with it. But watch for the numbers: If you use this last approach, numbers look “Western” but they are two-byte. A standard search for numbers might not find them.

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phspaelti
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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by phspaelti » 2014-07-09 17:35:17

js wrote:To apply a proper language attribute to each chunk of text, one for Western one for Chinese, is of course possible. But I wonder if anybody does it.
Well I do it. :wink:
If you apply the language attribute, the keyboard will switch automatically. If you do it without the attribute, the font of the Asian text 'stays' the same as the western font you were using (e.g. Times). But as you say the font is substituted.
js wrote:If you mainly write Chinese and western is secondary, you can also proceed from the other end: Start by choosing a Chinese font and see which Western font Apple found suitable to go with it. But watch for the numbers: If you use this last approach, numbers look “Western” but they are two-byte. A standard search for numbers might not find them.
Ugh! Using an Asian font for Western text. Now that's the definition of ugly.
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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by xiamenese » 2014-07-10 01:36:42

phspaelti wrote:
js wrote:To apply a proper language attribute to each chunk of text, one for Western one for Chinese, is of course possible. But I wonder if anybody does it.
Well I do it. :wink:
If you apply the language attribute, the keyboard will switch automatically. If you do it without the attribute, the font of the Asian text 'stays' the same as the western font you were using (e.g. Times). But as you say the font is substituted.
js wrote:If you mainly write Chinese and western is secondary, you can also proceed from the other end: Start by choosing a Chinese font and see which Western font Apple found suitable to go with it. But watch for the numbers: If you use this last approach, numbers look “Western” but they are two-byte. A standard search for numbers might not find them.
Ugh! Using an Asian font for Western text. Now that's the definition of ugly.
Absolutely. I set up paragraph and character styles with Chinese language attributes, including the font, and give them keyboard shortcuts. When I import a document from Scrivener, I select some Chinese, use the status bar option to find all similar and apply the Chinese language to it.

And yes, with Chinese fonts, the Roman characters are badly designed and kerned; even worse is the punctuation, since that is monospaced with the characters and ranged left within the box. It’s bad enough with things like commas, but apostrophes are a disaster.

Mark

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by js » 2014-07-10 07:34:32

The reason for the often unsatisfactory result if you choose a Chinese font for mixed text might be this: that in this case Apple does not normally substitute a Western script, but that the Western script is part of the Asiatic script design. That‘s why words with French accents or German Umlaute are so ugly: the asiatic script does normally not have them and Apple substitutes Times or something. I guess the advantage for native Chinese writers is that the have only one font instead of two. If you use the recommended method of an overall Western font this is different. In this case the substitution by Apple concerns the complete Western text and in fact creates two different fonts living together just as if you define a language attribute in Nisus.

Compared to defining Nisus language attributes (with the icon appearing at the bottom of Nisus documents) I still see two problems: The first is that using this method works only for Nisus. The second is: how do you change quickly from Western to Chinese and back. Can this be as fast as using system wide command-space?

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by phspaelti » 2014-07-10 09:57:00

Well, <command>-space ain't what it used to be. Apple is working overtime to screw up multi-lingual input. As for me, I'm working on a JIS keyboard so I have dedicated switching keys taking up half of my space bar, so I don't even need the <cmd>-space.
But do what works for you. For me I prefer to have the language style applied.

And since I'm on the topic, what ever happened to the Character catalog? The command "Character Catalog" found both in the "Insert" and the "Edit" menu now only brings up a silly windoid with emoticons and recycling symbols and other useless garbage. More of Apple's schemes of trying to turn our computers into iPads.This windoid does not seem to be customisable in any way. (The old character catalog can still be found, for now, under "Show Character Viewer" in the 'flag' menu, …until the next system update.)
philip

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by martin » 2014-07-10 11:39:22

js wrote:Compared to defining Nisus language attributes (with the icon appearing at the bottom of Nisus documents) I still see two problems: The first is that using this method works only for Nisus. The second is: how do you change quickly from Western to Chinese and back. Can this be as fast as using system wide command-space?
You can switch languages quickly by assigning each language a custom keyboard command, eg: Command + DE switches to German, Command + CN switches to Chinese, etc. Once you have your language preferences configured as desired, activating the language via its shortcut can also switch the keyboard layout, font, etc. I'd say it's a very efficient way to work once you're used to it.

If you prefer the "cycling" approach that OSX uses for keyboard layouts, you could also use our language cycling macros. They require a one-time setup macro, where you choose which languages you want to cycle through. After that you can repeatedly activate the "Cycle Language Next" macro to cycle through your chosen languages. Naturally you'd assign this macro a keyboard shortcut if you intend to use it often.

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by martin » 2014-07-10 11:41:46

phspaelti wrote:And since I'm on the topic, what ever happened to the Character catalog? The command "Character Catalog" found both in the "Insert" and the "Edit" menu now only brings up a silly windoid with emoticons and recycling symbols and other useless garbage.
I was initially confounded by this change too, but it turns out you can restore the original larger full Unicode character catalog by clicking a button in the top-right of the windoid:
chars.png
chars.png (40.34 KiB) Viewed 5990 times

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by phspaelti » 2014-07-10 20:30:27

martin wrote:I was initially confounded by this change too, but it turns out you can restore the original larger full Unicode character catalog by clicking a button in the top-right of the windoid:
Ok, I see now. In the 'out of the box' version of the windoid that top bar is hidden.
Character Windoid1.png
Character Windoid1.png (14.13 KiB) Viewed 5981 times
You have to pull down the windoid contents (with that Apple 'bounce effect') and then the bar will make an appearance.
Character Windoid2.png
Character Windoid2.png (15.47 KiB) Viewed 5981 times
From then on the bar is displayed and you can click back and forth between the windoid and the catalog, and the interface remembers your last setting.
Whew! What an elaborate interface.
philip

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by js » 2014-07-11 05:45:28

You can switch languages quickly by assigning each language a custom keyboard command, eg: Command + DE switches to German, Command + CN switches to Chinese, etc. Once you have your language preferences configured as desired, activating the language via its shortcut can also switch the keyboard layout, font, etc. I'd say it's a very efficient way to work once you're used to it.

If you prefer the "cycling" approach that OSX uses for keyboard layouts, you could also use our language cycling macros. They require a one-time setup macro, where you choose which languages you want to cycle through. After that you can repeatedly activate the "Cycle Language Next" macro to cycle through your chosen languages. Naturally you'd assign this macro a keyboard shortcut if you intend to use it often.
I tried the cycle macro. It is very well done and the response is very fast, thank you. Though for frequent use, an abbreviation like Command + CN could never compete with any combination using space (like cd-space). Am I right that Apple prohibits use of this, or is it Nisus own decision? If a shortcut Command + space would be possible and override Apple's own shortcut, you could just go on with the same technique of dual text input in any other software, losing only the advantage of Nisus' language attributes. There is no hack giving access to the space bar, is there?

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by Hamid » 2014-07-11 07:12:52

You can use Commad-Spacebar to switch between keyboards, and Command-alt-Spacebar to cycle through keyboards by unchecking the 'Spotlight menu keyboard shortcut' box in Spotlight Preferences.

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by martin » 2014-07-11 11:06:49

js wrote:Though for frequent use, an abbreviation like Command + CN could never compete with any combination using space (like cd-space). Am I right that Apple prohibits use of this, or is it Nisus own decision?
I can well understand that longer abbreviations aren't as efficient, and can be distracting while typing.

It is indeed true that you cannot currently use Command + Space as a custom keyboard shortcut in NWP. This wasn't a decision made by us, but something that Apple did not allow; the space key was gobbled up by the system before it ever reached NWP. However, there is good news on this front: the next NWP update will allow assigning Command + Space, so long as you are using Mac OS X 10.9 or later.

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by martin » 2014-07-11 11:16:54

js wrote:If a shortcut Command + space would be possible and override Apple's own shortcut, you could just go on with the same technique of dual text input in any other software, losing only the advantage of Nisus' language attributes. There is no hack giving access to the space bar, is there?
Good news: it turns out you can already use the Mac OS X system preferences, under Keyboard, to assign Command + Space to a menu:
keyboard.png
keyboard.png (90.93 KiB) Viewed 5954 times
I just tried it on Mac OS X 10.9.4 and it works well.

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Re: CJK and roman script font pairing

Post by js » 2014-07-11 12:04:48

Good news indeed, thank you Martin.

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