In LibreOffice, select Tools -> Extension Manager from the menu bar.
In the Extension Manager dialog click Add.
A file browser window opens. Navigate to the folder where you saved the LibreOffice extension file(s) on your system. The extension’s files have the file extension ‘OXT’.
Find and select the extension you want to install and click Open.
If this extension is already installed, you’ll be prompted to press OK to confirm whether to overwrite the current version by the new one, or press Cancel to stop the installation.
After you are asked whether to install the extension only for your user or for all users. If you choose the Only for me option, the extension will be installed only for your user. If you choose For all users, you need system administrator rights. In this case the extension will be available for all users. In general, choose Only for me, that doesn’t require administration rights on the operating system.
Debian and Ubuntu
The above steps works for Debian and Ubuntu too. But there is a better way. Using your package manager install hyphen-ml package. This will install hyphenation not only for libreoffice, but for typesetting packages like LaTeX.
Using the hyphenation
To automatically hyphenate the current or selected paragraphs, choose Format – Paragraph, and then click the Text Flow tab.
To manually Hyphenate Single Words, click in the word where you want to add the hyphen, and then press Ctrl+Hyphen(-).
To manually Hyphenate Text in a Selection Select the text that you want to hyphenate. Choose Tools – Language – Hyphenation.
Malayalam and several other languages does not use visible hypen(-) at the end of line when a word is broken. Currently there is no way to control this in libreoffice.
I had developed hyphenation patterns for 10 other Indian languages too. Yet to upload them to libreoffice repository. But they are readily available in Debian and Ubuntu. You can install them by choosing hyphen-* package.
Malayalam script is known for its curly characters with beautiful loops. Encoded in unicode around 2001, it is relatively new to the digital age. The script has been evolving from rectangle shaped to oval shaped types of varying proportions. The popular culture is more of oval/ellipse shaped curves, mainly because writing methods using stensils or pens demanded less sharp corners. The character or ligature shapes has also been changing gradually towards the shapes that are easy with pens. The Manjari font takes that to another level by smoothening all curves to its maximum.
The curves are constructed along the spiral segments. The resulting shapes are extra smooth. The curve perfection resulted in whitespaces that aquired beautiful leaf and drop shapes between the bowls and loops of the script. It is illustrated in the specimen. The spiral smoothness of curves were complemented by rounded terminals which gives very soft feeling for the eyes.
The design of the curves in Manjari are theoretically based on the PHD thesis by Raph Levien – “From Spiral to Spline: Optimal Techniques in Interactive Curve Design” (http://www.levien.com/phd/thesis.pdf). The Inconsolata monospace humanist latin font known for its clean lines and elegant design by Levien himself is based on this theory.
Normal, Bold, Thin style variants are available. This is the first Malayalam unicode font with thin style variant
The curve strokes in Manjari were drawn in Inkscape using the spiral library written by Raph Levien himself and opentype feature compilation was done using FontForge. The font is about to release in next few days, SVGs, scripts and source is available at https://gitlab.com/smc/manjari
Orion Champadiyil prepared some illustrations using the font, you can see them in our font download page
The intention is to provide a font preview, typography showcase, download site in single page. Every font has multiple illustrations of usage and the text used is editable if you want to try your own text there.
The old page which was also designed by myself was not mobile friendly. It provides a single page view to compare the fonts, each represented as cards. But it did not had enough flexibility to showcase some fine usages of typography.
A brief note on the workflow I used for font development is as follows
Prepared a template svg in Inkscape that has all guidelines and grid setup.
Draw the glyphs. This is the hardest part. For this font, I used bezier tool of inkscape. SVG with stroke alone is saved. Did not prepare outline in Inkscape, this helped me to rework on the drawing several times easily. To visualize how the stroke will look like in outlined version, I set stroke width as 130, with rounded end points. All SVGs are version tracked. SVGs are saved as inkscape svgs so that I can retain my guidelines and grids.
In fontforge, import this svgs and create the outline using expand stroke, with stroke width 130, stroke height 130, pen angle 45 degree, line cap and line join as round.
Simplify the glyph automatically and manually to reduce the impact of conversion of Cubic bezier to quadratic bezier.
Metrics tuning. Set both left and right bearings as 100 units(In general, there are glyph specfic tuning)
The opentype tables are the complex part. But for this font, it did not take much time since I used SMC’s already existing well maintained feature tables. I could just focus on design part.
Test using test scripts
Some more details:
Design: Santhosh Thottingal
Technology: Santhosh Thottingal and Kavya Manohar
Total number of glyphs: 676. Includes basic latin glyphs.
Project started on September 15, 2014
Number of svgs prepared: 271
Em size: 2048. Ascend: 1434. Descend: 614
242 commits so far.
Latest version: 1.0.0-alpha.20141027
All drawings are in inkscape. No paper involved, no tracing.
Thanks for all my friends who are helping me testing and for their encouragement.
Stay tuned for first version announcement 🙂