LINGUIST List 17.1638

Wed May 31 2006

FYI: SIL Not Recommending SILDoulos IPA93 Now

Editor for this issue: Svetlana Aksenova <>

Directory         1.    Mike Cahill, SIL Not Recommending SILDoulos IPA93 Now

Message 1: SIL Not Recommending SILDoulos IPA93 Now
Date: 31-May-2006
From: Mike Cahill <>
Subject: SIL Not Recommending SILDoulos IPA93 Now

Why SIL doesn’t recommend SILDoulos IPA93 font any more

The world is switching to Unicode, and in the next few years the conversionwill be complete. Most linguists have had the experience of receivingdocuments which use custom fonts which populate their computer screen withannoyingly faceless boxes rather than robust meaningful phoneticcharacters. Unicode-compliant fonts will largely eliminate this. SIL nowhas three good Unicode-compliant fonts with phonetic character capabilitywhich we commend for your consideration.

Charis SIL – possibly the best all around font for linguistic purposes. Itis publishing quality, has a complete IPA character set, includingstackable diacritics, so an entire manuscript, both text and linguisticexamples, may be typed with this. For Windows, MacIntosh, and Linux.

Doulos SIL – not the same as ''SIL Doulos!'' SIL is now following theindustry standard of putting the company’s name at the end. This fontresembles Times New Roman and has a complete IPA character set, includingstackable diacritics. Bold and italics are not built into the font, sothese depend on the automatic formatting of Word or other word processor.

Gentium – this is excellent for general purposes (it was a winner in theType Directors’ Club 2003 Type Design Competition), including Greek fonts.Much but not all of the IPA is included, though the remainder is expectedto be added within a year or so.

The SIL IPA93 fonts have become commonly used for many conference abstractsand journal submissions, but they are not Unicode and will not be developedfurther (e.g. ''Latin small letter v with right hook'' representing thelabiodental flap will never appear in these fonts). We now recommend CharisSIL or Doulos SIL for such submissions.

See for more discussion.

Mike CahillInternational Linguistics Coordinator, SIL International

Linguistic Field(s): Not Applicable