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Tilde~A: Alexios' Homepage

Menasat Font

This is a font and associated TeX package to typeset Menasat in the conventional, left-to-right, top-to-bottom orientation (there are others, but they make life very difficult). Making the font description itself was remarkably easy. METAFONT makes it very easy to draw letterforms, especially when emulating writing implements, which I was. The code to typeset latin transcriptions of Menasat wasn't so easy. I had to code a state machine for it, and that was the first time I ever used plain TeX for anything at all. The code can obviously be used inside LaTeX documents, of course. Not that anyone ever would! The syllabary itself relatively simple and is made to be written with a calligraphy pen. METAFONT is brilliant at emulating pens. TeX was not exactly made for syllabic scripts though, but it's Turing Complete. Coding the state machine was feasible, but annoying. The lack of codepoints (plain TeX is uses 8-bits to represent characters) was a nuisance. The end result was very rewarding, however!