[Ardour-Dev] Setting a font for the verbose cursor(s)

John Emmas johne53 at tiscali.co.uk
Sun Jan 30 03:54:22 PST 2011

There are probably several verbose cursors for all I know but the one I'm thinking of is the one which displays the timeline time when you left-click on Ardour's canvas.  This is giving me a minor (though ugly) problem in my Windows build.

AFAICT the main GTK+ GUI objects (buttons, menus, list boxes etc) seem to use the Pango font rendering engine that's relevant to whichever platform GTK+ was built for.  On my (Windows) platform they use PangoRenderWin32.  On Linux they presumably use PangoRenderX.  However, the verbose cursor seems to be using PangoRenderFc, which manages fonts via FontConfig and Freetype.  By default, these seem to use a different collection of fonts.  At the moment, FontConfig and FreeType seem to be picking an arbitrary font for the verbose cursor (presumably, whichever font was the first to be enumerated).  On Mixbus (OS-X) it's conveniently choosing the same font that's used for the green clocks (on my system, anyway).  On Linux, Ardour is using a serifed font for the verbose cursor text (on my system) whereas the other widgets all have sans-serif fonts.  The serifed font seems to be Times Roman or something like that which looks okay, even though it doesn't match the other fonts.

However, on my Windows build, the chosen font is quite ugly.  I don't know what it is but it looks slightly reminiscent of that computer-style font that was popular in 1970's sci-fi films!  It's readable, but not very pretty.  If there are other verbose canvas cursors they'll probably suffer from the same problem.

Paul (or anyone) could you suggest how and where I could explicitly specify a font to be used for verbose cursor text?  There doesn't seem to be a particular font specified at present, from what I can tell.


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