Generate features (ligatures specifically)

I haven’t the foggiest idea how to automatically generate ligatures. I checked automatic feature generation in the font info: nothing seems to happen.

I found “fl” and “fi” in MacRoman but I have no idea where ff is.

I looked in the manual and the online help but I could only see the add glyph help. Add glyphs didn’t seem to do anything useful (to me, that is). Could anyone run me through a step by step for “ff”? I’ll probably undersand the process from the example.


You need to put underscores between the base letters. So if you make a ligature for “s” and “t”, call the ligature “s_t”. Or “T” + “h” = “T_h”

The “fl” and “fi” are an exception. As they are defined in the MacRoman encoding, you may remove the underscore.

This is explained in the Glyphs help in Glyph naming scheme for automatic feature generation.

That’s all I needed. Thanks. I’m a fast learner. As posted, I can learn if I have a single example explained.

To your point though, I did read the online help, and the manual. It still didn’t make sense until your reply.

I suppose a followup is what Unicode, if any, do I assign to a nonstandard ligature? Do nonstandard ligatures belong in the ligature category (not such a bad question as I have no idea)?

You never assign any unicode. Glyphs automatically assigns unicodes if necessary. Manually assigning unicodes is only for experts in special situations.

That’s strange. I created an f_f. It created the glyph and put it in ligatures but didn’t assign a unicode. I put one in myself in the list view (FB00). Why do you think it didn’t assign a unicode. Is ff not standard?

For glyphs that are stylistic variations of other glyphs and are accessed by an OpenType feature, you do not assign unicodes (there are some exceptions). This has to do with what is saved into a PDF. You what it to contain readable text.

Then I just hit the handy Update Glyph Info menu item and, voilà, the Unicode goes away.



OK, so I created an ff. The background shows two "f"s. Good. I can use the draw tools but I can’t copy an “f” , duplicate, and adjust to taste.

I thought maybe the glyph was automatically generated upon output but not so. I exported the font and opened the otf in FontLab. The ff was absent. The fl an fi were there though.

What did I do wrong. The inability to paste in an f tells me I going about this wrong.

  1. Unicode is a character encoding, not a glyph encoding. And I quote the Unicode people: ‘Deal with it.’
  2. Did you create an ‘f_f’ or an ‘ff’?

Yes I created an f_f.
Didn’t really understand the Unicode difference. Thanks for the info.

[I delete the posts about the edit]