[vtk-developers] Unicode support for text annotations

David Thompson dcthomp at sandia.gov
Wed Mar 24 17:39:22 EST 2004

> I'll rewrite a good chunk of the text mappers in May, so you might want to 
> hold to that, and contact me at that point so that we can work hand in hand 
> (I guess a new SetInput(w_char*) will be needed, since we need to keep the 
> old SetInput(char*) signature).
Yes, the only question is how to handle GetInput() since many routines
may expect char* values. Should it downconvert the unicode to 8 bits,
return NULL, return a pointer to the w_char data, ...?

> You are right, ftgl/freetype supports 
> Unicode, and I think even some of the embedded fonts have a Unicode charmap 
> already (and probably symbols).
Some symbols like Pi and Sigma, but not all the Greek characters.

> BTW, we went into great length to find fonts that could be redistributed 
> freely in VTK: some of them did fit the bill (Bitstream/XFree86)
??? The only constraint on the Bitstream Vera fonts is that you can't
sell the fonts _alone_ -- they may be sold as long as they are part of
some other software package. See

> ... I'm not aware of a good quality symbol font 
> that could be added to VTK, but I'm planning to see if I can keep the 
> vtkTextProperty::SetFaceFileName() method so that you can specify your own 
> font file !
That would be great!


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