Unicode does not prescribe how to render characters for which the assigned
font(s) have no corresponding glyph(s). It does, however, make
recommendations on how an application or system should handle this case,
about which see Unicode 5.1 Section 5.3 Unknown and Missing Characters,
under the sub-heading of *Interpretable but Unrenderable Characters*. See
also the following FAQ:


What FOP should be doing, rather than map an unrenderable character to '#',
is to employ a so called Last Resort font, where each defined character is
associated with some glyph, e.g., one that indicates the script of the
character. In the absence of such a Last Resort font, it is customary to map
the character to a glyph depicting an empty box.

Unicode has published such a Last Resort font see:


A reasonable strategy for FOP might be to allow the user to specify (in the
FOP configuration file) a font mapping to a last resort font to be used in
such cases. The user would still have to download and install the last
resort font on their system, due to licensing reasons.

I will post a bug to this effect, and suggesting this solution, if there is
not already one present. Some minor modifications to FOP would be required
to make use of the configuration information specifying a last resort font,
and then using that font when no mapping is present in the assigned font.


On Mon, Jul 19, 2010 at 11:50 PM, Eric Douglas <edoug...@blockhouse.com>wrote:

> I don't understand what unicode.org is saying if it's just referring to
> what characters the codes should reference if they have to be in the
> font.  Fontforge says U2610 and U2611 are not in the font.
> Fontforge is an ugly program.  It runs within Cygwin, where it displays
> a window showing the characters in the font, but it doesn't show them
> all and doesn't have a scrollbar..
> I would like an easy way to view the characters in the font to see if I
> have something available that looks like a square/checkbox.
> I can only assume the square I'm getting is a default in FOP 0.95 for
> all missing glyphs.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: J.Pietschmann [mailto:j3322...@yahoo.de]
> Sent: Saturday, July 17, 2010 11:20 AM
> To: fop-dev@xmlgraphics.apache.org
> Subject: Re: Font Glyph?
> On 15.07.2010 22:44, Eric Douglas wrote:
> > Then I pass a text value of "&#x2611;" in my XML.  When the
> > transformer uses FOP to translate the XML into output, this prints a
> square.
> Have a look at http://www.unicode.org/charts/charindex.html
> U2611 is "BALLOT BOX WITH CHECK", i.e. not a square (U2610 should be a
> square, are you sure about the entity?) If FOP couldn't find the glyph,
> it would have printed a # instead.
> You could use one of the font editors to check whether your font
> actually has a glyph for the U2611 character (try
> http://fontforge.sourceforge.net/)
> > I tried replacing my fop.jar with one that I compiled from the Trunk,
> > and instead of printing the square it printed an error message to the
> > Java Console that the font doesn't contain the specified glyph.
> That's mildly odd, I'd guess your method for telling FOP about your font
> doesn't work as in Trunk.
> J.Pietschmann

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