Riemann: an OpenType font for functional analysis

Music notation symbols, fonts, font sources and font creation, SmuFL.
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OCTO
Posts: 1211
Joined: 05 Oct 2015, 06:52
Location: Sweden

Re: Riemann: an OpenType font for functional analysis

Post by OCTO » 11 Aug 2018, 16:05

The system I use and teach is the old central-east European style of mediants.

Basically, there is Tonic, its two Dominants on the perfect fifths (SubDominant: SD, and SuperDominant: D)
and for each of them there are Mediants on thirds (SubMediants: SM; and SuperMediants: M). We never use "super", it is just dominant and mediant.
Mediants can be diatonic, or chromatic.
Example:
A submediant to subdominant (in C major) is chord d-minor.
A low (=chromatically lowered) submediant to the SubDominant is the Phrygian chord (F) that is Dflat-major, when inverted it is Napolitan (N, usually thus N6).
P is the polar chord, the only one with no function (or semi-T+semi-S function): F# in C-major, thus, if p it is minor if P it is major:
Screen Shot 2018-08-11 at 18.03.31.png
Screen Shot 2018-08-11 at 18.03.31.png (340.97 KiB) Viewed 1093 times
The example has some minor mistakes in analysis, ignore.
Freelance Composer. Self-Publisher.
Finale 25 • Sibelius 2018 • MuseScore 2 • Logic Pro X • Ableton Live 9 • Digital Performer 9 /// OS X El Capitan, (side system: Debian 9, Windows 10)

User avatar
OCTO
Posts: 1211
Joined: 05 Oct 2015, 06:52
Location: Sweden

Re: Riemann: an OpenType font for functional analysis

Post by OCTO » 11 Aug 2018, 16:11

More here (© to me):
Screen Shot 2018-08-11 at 18.10.22.png
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Freelance Composer. Self-Publisher.
Finale 25 • Sibelius 2018 • MuseScore 2 • Logic Pro X • Ableton Live 9 • Digital Performer 9 /// OS X El Capitan, (side system: Debian 9, Windows 10)

MalteM
Posts: 21
Joined: 07 Aug 2018, 18:26

Re: Riemann: an OpenType font for functional analysis

Post by MalteM » 14 Aug 2019, 23:27

MalteM wrote:
11 Aug 2018, 10:35
This is only a proof of concept but I think if some of your are interested one could make this
  • more feature-complete (f. e. add top notes above the symbol, complete set of altered figures, triple dominant, accidental glyphs, ligatures for numbers ≥ 10 that take only one horizontal space, …)
  • more robust and easy to use (f. e. another input order of several lines of figures)
  • more beautiful (better horizontal spacing, better glyphs f. e. for double subdominant or slashed subdominant)
  • and maybe base it on a different font (I’d like Helvetica or a clone).
I finished my thesis using the published version of the font (plus two or three hacky additions) in September. In the past few days I managed to change the input order by using the mark and mkmk OpenType features. Because I have no idea of font licensing things and I’m not 100% satisfied with Source Sans Pro as a base I made a new font from scratch and drew some provisional glyphs (as you can guess I didn’t spend much time on nice forms as this was meant to be a proof of concept for the mark/mkmk approach):
Bildschirmfoto zu 2019-08-15 01-09-27.png
Bildschirmfoto zu 2019-08-15 01-09-27.png (82.25 KiB) Viewed 165 times
All of this is input as ASCII characters, f. e. the accidentals are ligatures

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#< #= #> #<< #>>
while the ASCII # is displayed as “Accidental” ;) But the really nice thing is the simpler input order for the last double dominant:

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DD^4-3^^6-5
In my first attempt that would have been

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DD-46-~~-35
The number of ^’s selects the layer for the following glyphs. The only drawback I currently see in that mark/mkmk approach is that those superscript glyphs take no horizontal space (else several layers of unknown length could not be placed above each other so easily) so in some programs you have to add that space before continuing the text. In fact for the screenshot above made with LibreOffice I entered

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DD^4-3^^6-5...
before writing “ More text.”, the periods are converted to empty glyphs by a contextual substitution.

For now I use ^_- for superscripts/subscripts/horizontal lines. Dear Dorico/Sibelius/Finale users, which alternatives would you suggest for _ and -?

Is there someone who is interested in making a nice font from that and can help me with licensing, metadata and maybe glyph drawing?
Edit: Another idea for the list above:
  • Maybe one could make a Fontforge script that produces such a font from an arbitrary “base” font. Of course this would only work if one could make missing superscript glyphs like < with such a script. That script would take information about glyph widths etc. from a (probably hand-made) file, make a “bare” font containing (only) all the needed glyphs and then apply the features.
I don’t think it’s worth the effort.

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