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Small Caps in Word 2010

Mar 20, 2010 4:23 PM

Word 2010 Beta represents a step forward in typographical features. It allows one to select between old style figures and lining figures, automatic substituion of ligatures, choice of style sets, etc., when using OpenType fonts. It does not, however, seem to have an easy way of selecting true small caps. With many of my Adobe fonts--those that came with my purchases of Design Suite CS3 and CS4--one can select the small cap glyphs, one by one, from Word's Symbol panel (the equivalent of InDesign's Glyph panel). While not ideal, that is doable since small caps are commonly used for acronyms, but not for large sections of text.


With Adobe Caslon and Arno, however, the small caps are not encoded into the Private Use Area of the fonts and seem not to be accessible at all in Word. One work-around for Adobe Caslon might be to find an old Adobe Caslon TT or Type 1 small caps font, but it appears that Adobe never released any TT or Type 1 fonts for Arno.


Arno is one of my favorite fonts. I'd like to use it as my regular choice for business correspondence, but I'd also like to be able to use the true small fonts. Is there any way of accessing Arno's small caps in Word?


John Hoffman


P.S. Include Brioso Pro with CS5 and you'll make a sale to me.

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    Mar 28, 2010 6:18 PM   in reply to JohnEHoffman



    If Word 2010 does not access the font's OpenType small caps feature, then the answer is no, you won't be able to get the true small cap glyphs.


    Arno Pro and other more recent Adobe font releases do not use PUA encodings. We currently believe that assigning PUA codepoints to small cap (and other alternate) glyphs is not a good practice.

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    Mar 29, 2010 10:41 AM   in reply to JohnEHoffman

    Using PUA-encoded glyphs breaks the semantics of the text; the words can no longer be spell-checked, and they might turn to gibberish or notdefs (rectangular boxes with a cross) if you switch to another font.

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    Oct 30, 2010 3:14 PM   in reply to JohnEHoffman

    I just got a copy of Word 2011 (Mac). For some reason they support stylistic variants but not small caps. However if you have a font editor that can edit Opentype, it's pretty easy to copy the small caps feature and rename the copy to stylistic variant N, where N is either not used by the font one a feature you don't care about.


    It seems pretty odd for them to support stylistic variants, but omit small caps, as I'm pretty sure sure caps are used more often.

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    Oct 30, 2010 3:45 PM   in reply to JohnEHoffman

    I'll look into doing a converter. I have an existing program that will take an opentype font and change the character table to move the small caps into the position of the normal letters. But this produces a second small caps font. It should be a lot easier to make this change.


    Finney's theory is interesting, but I doubt it's that well-considered.

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