Maybe this is not the right place to post this little problem, but I encountered the following problem while learning my new copy of FontLab and OpenType:
I opened a Macintosh Type 1 "Eurostile" font from Adobe to follow the technical stuff in the manual - the Eurostile-Oblique in particular (as an example)- and noticed that this font wasn't "oblique" at all in FontLab! Is this a bug in FontLab? Or is there something wrong with my original Adobe font "Eurostile" ? Or is there a way to build fonts that are in fact regular and gets "slanted on the fly" by software or fontmanagers?
The Type 1 specification allows you specify a font as a modification of another font. Most of the legacy Type 1 fonts with "Oblique" in the name were built this way. The Type 1 font program in effect contains two fonts: a copy of the Regular face, and and another font which is specified by saying: "copy the Regular face, and apply a transform matrix which slants it". If the Regular face has already been downloaded to a printer, then the copy of the Regular face which is packaged with the Oblique face can be omitted from the PostScript stream which is downloaded. We call these "syntthetic fonts".
You will not find this in the Adobe OpenType fonts, as the MakeOTF libraries will flatten synthetic fonts by applying the transform matrix to each glyph, and producing just a single non-synthetic font. We did this because we think that nowadays, minimizing download time is less important than avoiding extra work in font processing.