Plugins / Web
Apps & Tools
D-Type is a suite of professional high-performance scalable rasterizing engines for fast and smooth (anti-aliased) text and 2D graphics with built-in support for D-Type, TrueType, OpenType, TrueType and OpenType Collections, Type 1, Type 3, Web Open Font Format (WOFF) and bare CFF fonts. This powerful and fully cross-platform technology is ideal for software developers who wish to render high-quality anti-aliased text and scalable graphics from their applications and generate super fast, crisp, clear and smooth output on any device, platform or operating system.
At present, D-Type technology consists of the following core C/C++ engines:
D-Type Text Layout Extension is not a core D-Type engine but an important layout extension that can be used in conjunction with D-Type Font Engine. This extension allows developers to easily lay out Unicode text and complex scripts such as Arabic, Indic and Thai. As of January 30, 2014 two versions of this extension are available: one based on the ICU LayoutEngine and one based on the HarfBuzz text shaping engine.
In addition to the above engines, D-Type technology includes two important applications:
Additionally, the following plugins for Java, ASP & .NET are available:
D-Type technology is a result of our extensive experience in digital type technologies, 2D rendering and font hinting. Our work on D-Type started in early 1995 primarily as a research project. Due to the success of this project, in early 1996 we decided to release the first commercial version of D-Type Font Engine and Rasterizer. D-Type PowerDoc Engine and Text Layout Extension followed a few years later. The goal of the project from the very beginning was to create a superior font and scalable graphics rendering engine suitable for all types of applications — including the most demanding ones such as games and multi-media software. To achieve this goal, a whole set of completely new algorithms had to be invented and developed: sophisticated anti-aliased rendering, intelligent automatic font hinting, advanced real-time font interpolation and grayscale bitmap tuning are just a few of them. Today, D-Type is most likely the world's fastest software rendering technology for smooth text and 2D graphics.
Unsurpassed quality, speed and performance. D-Type can be used in a broad range of applications, including charting, presentation, computer animation, games, desktop publishing etc.
Excellent anti-aliasing capabilities with support for up to 256 levels of gray. Regardless of the size, D-Type text is always sharp and smooth!
Manual font hinting is not necessary. D-Type Font Engine has a built-in auto-hinting subsystem that produces absolutely stunning results with virtually any font.
Clean, robust, reliable, object-oriented and cross-platform API, effective memory management and highly optimized code.
Support for D-Type, TrueType, OpenType, Type 1 and bare CFF fonts as well as TrueType and OpenType font collections. Multiple-Master support is available for Type 1 and D-Type fonts. Limited support for PostScript Type 3 fonts. Note: D-Type Font Engine does not support TrueType bytecode (aka TrueType instructions) but uses its own font hinting technology to enhance the display of fonts.
2D text transformations including horizontal and vertical compression, expansion, skew, mirroring and rotation.
D-Type can pass grayscale data to your application as a bitmap image. This is ideal for bitmap data manipulation or masking other images.
D-Type libraries are fully reentrant and, when used properly, thread-safe. You can initialize as many instances of D-Type engine as necessary and use them simultaneously!
Over 13 years of experience in digital type technology, rasterization and font hinting.
D-Type is designed with portability in mind. Our code is written in a clean, object-oriented and platform independent manner in a subset of industry standard C++. Consequently, all D-Type engines can be compiled and deployed on virtually any platform in existence today. This includes Microsoft Windows (95/98/NT/2000/XP/Vista/7), Linux, Mac OS X, iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Windows RT, XBox, Raspberry Pi, Zealz GK802 Quad Core Android Mini PC, MS-DOS etc. And since D-Type API is the same on all these platforms, developers of cross-platform applications only need to learn one cross-platform API and implement their D-Type rendering subsystem once.
Even our plugins, tools and applications follow this approach. For example, D-Type PowerDoc For Java can be used on any platform that supports Java while D-Type PowerDoc Editor and D-Type Font Converter run on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.
Licensed D-Type engines are available out of the box for Microsoft Windows (all versions), Linux, Mac OS X, iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Windows RT, XBox, Raspberry Pi, Zealz GK802 Quad Core Android Mini PC and even MS-DOS. Custom builds for other platforms are also available upon request. For more information on pricing and different licensing options, please see our Contact Us page. Also, D-Type Evaluation Libraries are available to registered evaluators.
To ensure quick and smooth integration, D-Type comes with numerous examples that demonstrate various D-Type features. In addition, all licensing options come with optional support and free future upgrades.
With over 6,000 run-time auto-hinted anti-aliased characters/second and well over 18,000 non-hinted anti-aliased characters/second at 12 ppem on a 266 MHz Pentium II processor, D-Type Font Engine is most likely the world's fastest grayscale font rasterizer.
Absolutely amazing quality due to a combination of excellent anti-aliasing capabilities and revolutionary hinting and auto-hinting algorithms. D-Type's anti-aliasing provides support for up to 256 levels of gray (or other color intensities), while font hinting significantly improves text legibility. Unlike many other graphics packages that generate gray-levels simply by down-sampling a larger black and white bitmap, D-Type generates gray-levels during the rasterization process itself. As a result, D-Type's rasterizer is lightning fast, can easily support up to 256 levels of gray (or other colors) and does not suffer from overflow problems when generating extremely large characters or shapes. In brief, D-Type's anti-aliasing is not just a mechanism that makes the diagonal lines look smooth; it is a sophisticated technology designed to enhance screen resolution and improve text legibility regardless of the size or device.
D-Type Font Engine is one of the very few font engines with direct support for Multiple-Master font technology. Multiple-Master is a revolutionary breakthrough in font technologies that allows two or more outline fonts, or base designs, to be incorporated into a single font file. This unique feature allows applications to create hundreds or thousands of additional font variations from a single font file by applying D-Type's real-time interpolation capabilities (also known as font morphing). Possible examples include font variations ranging from Light to Black, Condensed to Extended, Sans Serif to Serif, Wedge Serif to Slab Serif etc.
D-Type Font Engine provides support for the following popular font formats:
D-Type Font Engine excels when it comes to special text effects and text transformations. D-Type text can be drawn at any size (with kerning and inter-character spacing on or off), stretched, compressed, mirrored (horizontally and/or vertically), skewed (horizontally and/or vertically), rotated, outlined (with a custom outline thickness), transparent (with a custom opacity factor), embossed, filled, dilated, blurred, shaded, in an arc etc. In addition, D-Type makes it possible to draw anti-aliased text or shapes filled with a custom texture provided from another bitmap or BMP image.
Both D-Type Font Engine and D-Type Rasterizer can draw to 8-bit grayscale or a variety of 16, 24 and 32-bit RGB(A) surface formats supplied by your application. This type of rendering is platform independent, extremely fast and very suitable for real-time animations. In addition, surface's RGB data can be retrieved easily, and optionally, saved in some of the popular image formats.
An application can use D-Type's ultra-fast rasterizer to generate anti-aliased shapes or scalable vector-based graphics of absolutely amazing quality. D-Type Rasterizer is highly customizable and supports both the Odd-Even and Nonzero Winding Number rule. In addition, D-Type Rasterizer comes with a library of the most common shapes, such as lines, circles, ellipses, rectangles, rounded rectangles and polygons, which can be drawn filled or stroked, with a custom line width. The library is shipped as source code in C and can be expanded or modified easily.
D-Type can support extremely large character sets, including national character code standards used with Chinese, Japanese or Korean (CJK) fonts. In addition, D-Type's 2 and 4-byte Unicode character representation makes it possible to display all character sets in the world simultaneously.
D-Type features clean, simple, robust, object-oriented and cross-platform API. Since global/static variables are not used anywhere in our libraries, applications can initialize multiple instances of D-Type engine and use D-Type functions simultaneously. Consequently, D-Type libraries can be used on multi-threaded systems without relying on mutexes or other synchronization/blocking code.
The following is just a partial list of companies using D-Type in their applications:
|Creative Technology Ltd.
FormWeb.com online forms generator relies on D-Type engine for charting and dynamic graphics.
ButtonFly is an excellent application for button generation powered by D-Type Font Engine and Rasterizer.
|Partners Imaging Services
|TEDISYS Tele Diffusion Systems
"I really like the rasterizer -- the output quality is fantastic."
"I was impressed by the quality and speed of the engine, and want to integrate it in all our products."
"That's great! Multiple-Master support is a big issue for us."
"The engine works very good in our application."
"Your last email was very helpful. The results are very good!"
"Rendering is really fast. We draw really large shapes and it always works."
"I'm thinking of replacing our entire engine with D-Type, because D-Type seems to be much faster and it produces better looking text."
We are pleased to announce the release of D-Type Engine 5.0. This new release, which was first made available for download on January 30, 2014, marks yet another important milestone in our principal research and development project that focuses on font rasterization, text layout and scalable 2D graphics rendering technologies.
D-Type 5.0 features an application programming interface (API) that is backward compatible with our 4.0 release. However, some obsolete and/or undocumented APIs have been removed and a number of new features have been added. Here is a quick overview of the major accomplishments that made D-Type 5.0 possible.
As announced in November 2013, D-Type 5.0 comes with two text layout extensions that can be used in conjunction with D-Type Font Engine: the legacy one which is based on the ICU LayoutEngine and a new one which is based on the HarfBuzz text shaping engine. Although HarfBuzz is still new and under active development, we wanted to create a text layout extension that can take advantage of its capabilities now. At the same time it was important to ensure that the application programming interface of the new extension remains 100% identical to the existing ICU-based Text Layout Extension. This means that from the API point of view no changes in client code are necessary. All it takes is a simple replacement of one extension with another. And if your application is linked to the dynamic library version of our extension, you don't even need to recompile your code to start using the new HarfBuzz engine.
The new HarfBuzz text shaping engine will supersede and make ICU LayoutEngine obsolete in the near future. HarfBuzz is designed to provide better support for complex scripts and advanced typography. For example, in the future it is possible that some of the vertical text processing that D-Type PowerDoc Engine currently does on its own will be supplemented by HarfBuzz. Also, our expectation is that HarfBuzz will open new possibilities for advanced and/or exotic typographic and layout capabilities that are currently not possible with the ICU-based Text Layout Extension. One thing to note, however, is that at this point in time HarfBuzz is primarily an OpenType layout engine and does not provide support for Apple Advanced Typography (AAT) layout tables. While it is reasonable to assume that this support might be added at some point in the future, the fact that OpenType has been adopted much more widely than AAT makes this less of an issue. Notwithstanding all of the above, the ICU-based Text Layout Extension is still available and will be fully supported in D-Type 5.0. It has been updated to include the latest ICU release which comes with important enhancements and security updates. This means that developers are free to choose the layout extension as they see fit.
A major breakthrough in direct RGBA rasterization: In the past D-Type Engine offered only one direct color RGBA rasterizer, now called No-Overlap RGBA Rasterizer. It was very fast and featured extremely high-quality rendering and perfect stitching between adjacent fill areas of different color. However, it was not a general-purpose rasterizer due to one important limitation: in order for the colors of the rendered pixels to be correctly computed, all input 2D vector art had to be free of overlapping contours. In other words the input geometry had to be flat. However, starting with D-Type 5.0 this is no longer necessary so non-overlapping contours are now fully supported.
Not only does D-Type 5.0 completely remove the restriction of non-overlapping contours, it also comes with 3 (three!) additional direct color RGBA rasterizers: Ultra-Fast RGBA Rasterizer, Reference RGBA Rasterizer and Alpha-Blend RGBA Rasterizer.
The new Ultra-Fast RGBA Rasterizer is the one we are especially proud of. Not only is it a general-purpose rasterizer, i.e. capable of correctly and accurately rendering arbitrary non-flat RGBA geometry, but it can do this in a single pass, extremely fast. So fast, in fact, that some users who saw our early performance demos and real-time animations could not tell if the rendering is done in hardware or software. At the same time the quality of anti-aliased rendering and pixel stitching is superb and exceeds the quality offered by most video cards in use today.
We are confident that our Ultra-Fast RGBA Rasterizer is the world's fastest and highest-quality direct color software rasterizer available on the market today, much like our grayscale rasterizer was back in 1996 when we first released D-Type. The release of this state-of-the-art rasterizer represents the latest evolutionary step in our research on anti-aliased rasterization algorithms that started in 1996. Pretty much everything that was learned since then we were able to put into this rasterizer. If you are looking for a super fast, general purpose, software-based RGBA rasterizer that produces identical results down to (sub)pixel on any platform or device then look no further.
Overall, D-Type 5.0 is more optimized than our earlier releases, both in terms of the code size and performance. It comes with many other small enhancements and useful additions. This includes support for additional memory surface formats, improved precision of certain calculations, additional fonts etc.
If you are interested in evaluating D-Type 5.0, you can request D-Type Evaluation libraries from our Contact Us page.
In late 2003 we announced D-Type 4.0. This release was written entirely in industry standard C++ which resulted in a faster, easier to maintain and more scalable engine. Not only was the 4.0 engine built upon advanced concepts from object oriented programming but also everything that was learned while working on previous D-Type releases. Even today, D-Type 4.0 is probably the only font and graphics rendering engine on the market featuring a true object oriented internal architecture.
Compared to our previous releases, D-Type 4.0 also brings lots of new features, improvements and optimizations. The most important ones are listed below:
Simplified and more flexible initialization of the engine.
Simplified overall architecture of the engine. The 4.0 engine features a modern, scalable and powerful API while any inconsistencies and/or legacy issues have been removed.
Improved font access speed (fonts open noticeably faster compared to previous releases).
Improved rendering quality even further. This is achieved by utilizing a new rendering method that relies on our latest in-house rendering technologies.
Advanced filters for a more balanced color contrast and enhanced bitmap quality.
Support for advanced typography including ligatures and contextual glyph shaping (such as in Arabic scripts).
Significantly improved stream management subsystem. The stream handling in 4.0 is very abstract and capable of supporting complex fonts files that exist virtually anywhere. For example, the new engine can support fonts that consist of multiple parts (e.g. glyph data, metrics, character maps) that exist in different streams (e.g. memory, local or network disk or even the Internet). Starting with this release, the new engine supports native kerning for Type 1 fonts that include kerning information in a separate .afm file.
Improved font compression of the native D-Type font format and additionally reduced memory footprint of the engine. Also, the engine can be configured specifically for memory constrained devices, which reduces the memory footprint even further.
Improved error handling mechanism (e.g. when encountering bad fonts). The 4.0 release has a very powerful API for reporting errors in bad fonts back to the end-user.
Font activation and deactivation mechanism. This allows application to activate fonts only when and if they are used and deactivate fonts when they are not needed for a longer period of time. Consequently, applications can maintain very large static font catalogs without consuming too much memory.
Ability to save fonts in D-Type font format and an API for creating subsetted D-Type fonts. This API gives developers full control over the glyph subsetting process. This, for example, allows developers to save in the output D-Type font only those glyphs that are actually used in their documents. Subsetted D-Type fonts are smaller in size than the original input fonts (since they contain fewer glyphs) and, therefore, very suitable for embedding in electronic documents.
An API to access D-Type's pattern catalog.
A new surface type that provides basic support for rendering in 8-bit indexed (palletized) color mode.
A new method that allows applications to supply their own alpha-levels (grayscale) to be utilized by D-Type Rasterizer when rasterizing output primitives.
New functions that provide precise control over hinting, positioning, sub-pixel precision and output quality.
More ways to construct and render custom shapes.
The end-user API allows developers to specify coordinates as both floating point and 24.8 fractional values.
32-bit representation for Unicode character codes and glyph indices. This allows D-Type Font Engine to support (theoretically) more than 4 billion characters and/or glyphs in a single font file.