How reliable are OTFs exported from a font editor?

I was wondering how reliable fonts exported directly from a font editor are (assuming that you have filled all font naming, vertical dimensions, blue values, and stemsnap values correctly)? I'm thinking Robofont or Glyphs App, mostly. In this case, the fonts will be auto-hinted and the feature set it simple. Are they ready to sell or at what point do I need a font engineer?

Most foundries I know have their own ways to compile and produce final OTFs, which usually reply on scripts and the Terminal. I suppose mostly it’s for easier/quicker batch-processing and possibly tinkering with the makeotf options. Can someone explain to me (or point me in the right direction) to read more about this topic? Thank you

Comments

  • Robin MientjesRobin Mientjes Posts: 107
    Some important/useful things I do with my build script that are hard or impossible to do with the editor alone: batch name table changes, batch feature file edits, time-stamped test files, automatic font subsetting (for trial files), more control over auto-hinting, renaming and generation of web fonts.

    For a great example of this, and how the workflow is set up, the work @Frank Grießhammer and @pauldhunt did on Source Sans was essential in my own scripts. I based my code on theirs and then expanded as my needs did. This folder structure and the build scripts closely match my mental model of the design process.
  • Georg SeifertGeorg Seifert Posts: 519
    @Robin Mientjes Those features are not about reliability but making fonts in a library more consistent. 

    The tools that Glyphs (and I suppose RoboFont, too) uses produce fonts that are totally fine for production use. You still have to test them in as may environments you can. But that is true for all toolsets. 

    If you find a problem with your font that you can’t solve be changing the info in the app itself, you should tell the developer of that app that they can fix it (or advice a working setting).

  • Robin MientjesRobin Mientjes Posts: 107
    I don’t disagree, @Georg Seifert, I was answering the second part of the post. Reliability is a big question and I selfishly chose to respond to the small one.
  • Thomas PhinneyThomas Phinney Posts: 1,031
    I agree 100% with Georg. In most cases, there is nothing you can’t do in your font editor that is required to make a technically correct, reasonable font.
  • Frode Frode Posts: 29
    Unless, off course, the application is in perpetual beta, with major changes every other day, and also hapazardly ignores spec whenever they feel like it.
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