groff && UTF-8

Matthias Apitz guru at
Mon Jul 18 10:49:44 UTC 2011


In the '90 I have used for a lot of my internal and external papers and
letter the groff suite (gtbl, groff, ...) with good results.

I've now a project where it would fit really nicely. It's making
(Postscript or PCL) printout of some pages like this example one:

in which most of the part is just plain text, printed in some fixed
font, a few big letters (big font) and some OCR-B on the page (like the
number 0000471110 in the mentioned page).

The critical part seems to be: the text is UTF-8 and converting this
to ISO 8859-1 is not an option. It's a Library Management System we
just ported to Unicode, and we don't want to fall back in printing :-)

I've checked groff 1.21 from the ports but it seems to understand
only making UTF-8 output with its driver -Tutf8. Is there a way to make
it understand UTF-8 as input and making PCL or Postscript of it
(like CUPS which has a filter 'texttops' which together with the
FreeFonts can make Postscript of UTF-8 text)?

Any other ideas?

OCR-B is another issue, perhaps. But it seems that there are at least
free fonts available for it in Postscript...



Matthias Apitz
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