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Include a useable modern font (TrueType/OpenType) compliant with ASME Y14.2 Standard

Include a useable modern font (TrueType/OpenType) compliant with ASME Y14.2 Standard

The purpose is to switch from the ProE font.ndx/stroked stick font to a modern font.  This helps with:

  • WYSIWYG Exporting while maintaining real searchable/editable text...especially for PDFs
  • Creo4 essentially disabled font thickness control (except for entire notes) while the new Bold feature doesn't visibly bold for the stroked font styles.
  • General downstream reuse is impaired by using a stroked font instead of a modern universal font.

 

It should at least have the following features/compatibility:

According to the standard, it should be:

  • All caps with exceptions
  • Gothic/Sanserif (without flourishes)
  • Single stroke (all letters are the same thickness everywhere in the letter)

 

To be useable it should also be:

  • Monospaced (spaces and letters take up the same space)...this is essential for readability for text alignment and tables on Engineering drawings)
  • Comprehensively changed and controllable with config options
    • MBD compatible (ideally updateable with dwg config or mapkey-able from drawing)
    • Symbol compatible (diameter, degree, etc)
    • Whatever font is used it should be either universally present or embedded.  Not a big problem for Creo because startup scripts can distribute, so this is mainly for other applications (Creo View, pdf, dxf, etc).
  • Nice to haves
    • Ideally, this font should be especially easily legable with All Caps but also lower case.
    • 100% differentiable between letters and numbers (e.g. Il1 = iL1, etc)
    • A text style checkbox like in word to switch between sentence case, title case, all caps, Small caps)

 

Great discussion on this:

 

Please comment if I may have missed anything.

5 Comments
lscheeler
Pearl

Doing some more testing I also noticed that the font name is a bit confusing for the variations of fonts.  If going production with a modern font it would be very helpful to have the font set in the format tab, and actually show what the font is regardless if it is bold or not.  Currently, if some of the text is bold and some is regular Creo will report the font name "As Is" because it sees the Regular and Bold fonts as different fonts, even though the bold button usually switches it automatically.

Entire font box selected: As Is

lscheeler_0-1615825174782.png

Curser on bolded text: Inconsolata Bold

lscheeler_1-1615825204476.png

Curser on Regular text: Inconsolata Regular

lscheeler_3-1615825227739.png

 

BrianSnyder
Granite

Something interesting: 

  1. Create a drawing that has a few notes with different font width ratios using the default font.ndx
  2. Export the drawing to a PDF with the option "Use TrueType Fonts" selected (PDF Export Settings>Content>Fonts).
  3. Creo converts the stroked font into a TrueType font for the PDF.
  4. Notice the PDF reports the font as "ArialMT".
  5. Also notice that the PDF text obeys the variations in width ratio.

Does this mean that Creo has the ability to output a variable width TrueType font? It certainly looks like it! I wonder why using a TrueType Font disables the width ratio on the menus? Being able to specify the font used during a "stroked to TrueType" conversion at PDF creation (that allowed variable width ratios) would be phenomenal.  I'd like to see PTC:

  1. Enable a configuration option to select "stroked to TrueType" font for PDF export.
  2. Create a new variable width TrueType font that overlays perfectly with the current font.ndx

Then work could be done with the more performant stroked font during drawing creation/editing and then exported to a TrueType PDF without issue.

 

EDIT:  I had intended to include an image but community.ptc.com refuses to let me upload it.

BrianSnyder
Granite

Added photos

Creo_Variable_TTF.png

lscheeler
Pearl

@BrianSnyder ,  This was a very interesting find that Creo can output variable width TTF but yet cannot change the width factor for text shown on the actual Creo Drawing.  I did some more testing and realized that we change the spacing a lot in order to fit text in tables or other tight places.  This would be a real obstacle to converting font.ndx to TTF.

 

Allowing us to change the width factor could be most helpful for the spaces between words.  It seems very odd to me that in Creo the TTF spacing between words is so close together.  It is more difficult for the eye to pick up where one word begins and ends.  This issue may be inherent to modern fonts when combine with all caps (which ASME Y14.2 still requires), however it does seem at least a little better in MS Word for the equivalent fonts.

 

I just tested the Courier New because it is monospaced, single stroke, and TTF (although it is not sanserif...so Courier has the flourishes).  It looks pretty good in that respect, however, it is wider and takes more space on the drawing, combined with the fact that Creo doesn't allow us to control the width factor..  I guess back to the drawing board! 🤔

BrianSnyder
Granite

Fortunately we don't deviate from the standard 0.8 width ratio very often. Usually in revision blocks but not that frequently. For the time being as I re-work drawings over to TTF formats I've been using the semi-condensed version of Incosolata where required and it appears to work well. Hopefully someday PTC can enable us to replace the default "ArialMT" with a font of our choosing. Preferably PTC themselves would create (or commission) a variable-width TTF that is a replacement for font.ndx, differing in that it has all unique characters of course. When selecting "stroke all characters" for PDF output this custom font should be the default.