Visualizing anchors

I don’t know if I’m missing something, but when I select anchors, some anchors like top or bottom show marks that have them, but other anchors like exit, entry or custom anchor names show nothing. Is there a way to visualize the glyphs that have anchors for the other side of a selected anchor regardless of its name?

Exit and entry anchors are not for mark attachment, but for cursive attachment. Want to preview cursive attachment? You can simply switch to RTL and type a few cursively attached letters.

Typing does not work since Glyphs will (helpfully) do Arabic shaping to the text giving me different glyphs that what I want. E.g. I have a lookup that replaces hah-ar.fina following beh-ar.init by hah-ar.isol then a cursive anchor to correctly attach the two, typing beh hah will give me beh-ar.init hah-ar.fina which is not what I want, I can then enable the feature that does the substitution, but that is rather convoluted and I’m not sure if it works with complex lookups. I also want to see all the glyphs that has exit anchor which I select entry anchor, so I can see the effect of moving the anchor on all of them.

There is still an issue with custom anchor names, I have a side anchor that positions the dots not to yeh-ar.init in certain context, but I can’t see the dots when I select the anchor.

The display of the mark cloud is not controlled by the anchors. Each glyph has a preset list of marks (in GlyphData > accents).
Previewing all possible exit/entry combinations is difficult for two reasons. First looking for all glyphs with a corresponding anchor would be slow (but that could be fixed by some caching). But in a typeface that is fully cursive, that could be easily a thousand glyphs. Drawing all of them would be way to slow and probably not that useful because each individual shape would be drawn with less then one percent of gray.

I’m open to suggestions.

You could try the “Show Mark Preview” plugin. At least it should be possible to adjust it to work with entry/exit anchors, too.

I see. Thanks for the explanation and suggestions.

Can the glyph accents be stored in the font instead of the GlyphData file? I have very unusual accents (not really accents but components I want to control independently with OpenType features) and I don’t want to maintain my own GlyphData file just for this.

You don’t have to. You can put together your own compound structures. Either with Add Component or a recipe.