8 Replies Latest reply on Nov 9, 2011 10:57 AM by freighterdog

    Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions


      I'll be taking a job that requires insertion into text of a considerable number of fractions.

      What font pallet offers fractional notation down through 1/16,1/32,1/64 etc? Fractions should have a superscript numerator over a subscript denomenator, separated by a backslash, instead of a horizontal M-dash.


      I'll be working largely in MS Word 2004 (Mac) and Acrobat 9 Pro.

        • 1. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
          Michael Müller-Hillebrand Level 4



          Many modern fonts have the appropriate glyphs in the Unicode range. There also is a special fraction slash that is not as stepp as the standard slash, on my Mac (German OS) this is available using Alt+i. The following examples may look a bit ugly, depending on the font your browser selects:




          ¹⁄₁₆   ¹⁄₃₂  ¹⁄₆₄


          I use PopChar to find glyphs in my fonts. What I want to say is: You may already have an appropriate font available.


          - Michael

          • 2. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
            Thomas Phinney Level 3

            What Michael said. Sadly Word 2004 does not support automatic usage of such fonts (even Word 2011 doesn't support it properly). But you can still set them manually.


            Scroll down this page to the "Diagonal Fractions" entry for more info on the glyphs:



            Unfortunately Adobe doesn't support a search for just those fonts. But MyFonts does:



            (Just one clarification: it's a fraction bar, not a backslash. The backslash points the opposite direction!)

            • 3. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
              freighterdog Level 1

              It looks like the fonts lack the necessary characters. I searched after downloading PopChar. It it isn't there, it isn't there.

              So I will have to spend an hour and use the MS Word Auto Correct feature to do what I want. With auto correct I'll have construct a small collection of fractions and insert them into a "dictionary". Autocorrect will then see as I type 1/2, and change it to 1(superscript) / 2(subscript).


              It seems stupid in this era of modern computers. Fortunately I will only need fractions as low as the 1/64th range, and even there, only the odd numbered ones. 2/64, for instance, isn't needed since it is expressed as 1/8.


              The Adobe link was informative. And I'll send an angry letter to Mr. Bill Gates about the weakness of MS Word. Perhaps he will send me money — divided into fractions, of course.


              Thanks Michael and Thomas

              • 4. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
                Thomas Phinney Level 3

                Note that Word's autocorrect function will sub pre-built real fractions for the 1/2, 1/4 and 3/4 that are standard in Windows fonts (and most all fonts these days). If you use Word's superscript and subscript capabilities to build fractions, note that you will get something a bit different than "real" fractions. Positioning will be an issue (though it can be adjusted), but also the scaled-down numbers will be more thin and spindly than "real" designed fraction numerators and denominators would be. Not much to be done about that if you don't have the "real thing," unfortunately.


                If you have ever downloaded a compatibility pack to allow you to interoperate with newer versions of Word, you may have some fonts that do have real numerators and denominators. All the so-called "ClearType fonts" have 'em (Calibri, Consolas, Constantia, Candara, Corbel, Cambria). Also Palatino Linotype if you have that. These were bundled with Windows Vista and Office 2007 and later, but also came with the compatibility pack.


                Good luck!

                • 5. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
                  freighterdog Level 1

                  Two questions:


                  Where do I obtain a compatibility pack?


                  On another forum (Mac Rumors) someone suggested I use Word '04's Equation Editor to construct the numerals. It will take a little effort on my part to understand Equation Editor. Does that Function have some special magic to create these composite characters?


                  I feel like I am out on a limb with MS Word. There isn't any material beyond basics in the few reference books written on it. Nothing from Amazon.com, none from David Pogue's Missing Manual series.

                  • 6. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
                    Thomas Phinney Level 3

                    My bad to refer to it as a compatibility pack. If you have updated your copy of Office 2004 with all the latest updates, you should have the fonts. They shipped in a dot release that focused on compatibility with newer versions of MS Office (for .docx files, etcetera).


                    I have no idea about the Equation Editor, sorry!

                    1 person found this helpful
                    • 7. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
                      freighterdog Level 1

                      Problem resolved. I created a Template document in Word with all the correctly formated fractions. I just typed in a string of superscript numerals, subscript numerals and resized Forward Slahes. Then, with a little cutting and pasting, I combined all the elements and arranged a complete sequence for each denominator series.... 1/8, 3/8 etc.


                      Word has an AutoCorrect Tool. I customed the Keyboard to access this tool with a Kestroke combination after highlighting each of the numerals on the template. Each entry prompted me to then enter the improperly formatted fraction. It was remarkably quick.


                      Now, every time I type 3/4, for instance, Word automatically pops in the Super/Subscript fraction.


                      Thanks for your help.

                      • 8. Re: Font Offering Appealing Numeric Fractions
                        freighterdog Level 1

                        Because I worked in Publishing at a large house I do in fact have a slew of Adobe OTF fonts. How do I  identify particular fonts that offer diagonal fractions? Do I just open Font Book and pull up character sets one by one?


                        I was hoping that there would be tribal knowledge at Adobe about which serif and sans serif fonts are popular for this purpose with engineers or in aerospace.