Editing the ss01, ss02, ss03... convention / Automatic feature generation for custom stylistic alternate naming


We are trying to swap xx.ss01 with a custom extension like xx.salt_simple but would like the glyph to behave the same as xx.ss01 in terms of automatically generating features and automatically compiling with correct component recipe. We tried adding a.salt_simple and agrave.salt_simple to the glyphsData.xml file.

For example, we added

<glyph unicode="" name="a.salt_simple" category="Letter" subCategory="Lowercase" script="latin" description="LATIN SMALL LETTER A STYLISTIC ALTERNATE" anchors="top, bottom, ogonek" accents="caroncomb, dotaccentcomb, ogonekcomb, macroncomb, brevecomb, tildecomb, circumflexcomb, acutecomb, gravecomb, ringcomb, dieresiscomb, dotbelowcomb" />


<glyph unicode="" name="agrave.salt_simple" decompose="a.salt_simple, gravecomb" category="Letter" subCategory="Lowercase" script="latin" description="LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH GRAVE STYLISTIC ALTERNATE" />

This way the compilation works, but the application still does not know to automatically generate features recognizing that agrave.salt_simple is a stylistic alternate for agrave. Is there a file that we could go in and adjust the ss01 name to something customized for our purposes?

Thank you for your help!

It sounds like you’re trying to accomplish the same thing as using ss01, ss02, etc. but by using .salt_simple? If so, is there a specific reason for doing so? If not, how exactly is this behaving differently?

If you’re simply looking to name your stylistic sets, you can still design them using ss01 (so everything generate automatically), but under their respective feature codes include Name: Your Stylistic Name


Yes we are trying to accomplish exactly that. There is a specific reason: we work on the typefaces collaboratively and we like our glyph names to be human readable. For example for an l with a tail alternate, we would like to use l.salt_tail instead of l.ss04. This way we can know what that character is from its name. With a generous font library, this makes our process a lot more efficient.

We are not concerned with what the user sees in the OpenType menu as the Name: Your Stylistic Name would solve. We are more concerned with internal work process.

Please let me know if there are any ways we can accomplish this change, Thanks!

You could use glyph notes for the communication part. There is a Glyph Note plugin in the plugin manager that shows the text in the sidebar.

Thanks Georg for the answer, and for the suggestion around glyph notes.

We are wondering if you can also share more about how the automated feature generators work in Glyphs, since that’s our primary issue — where are the scripts building those located, and is there any way to edit them? Would be really helpful for us to rename the ss01 etc. convention.

Thank you again for the support!

The automatic feature code generator only relies on the glyph names. So editing the GlyphData will not help.

In your case it might be the easiest to write a script that updates the features.