Evaluation of the Legibility of Chinese Fonts for Digital Publishing

Ching Y. SUEN and Ying LI
CENPARMI, Centre for Pattern Recognition and Machine Intelligence
Concordia University, Montreal, Canada
Tel. 848-2424, Fax. 848-2830
email: suen@cenparmi.concordia.ca


Since the invention of scanning devices several decades ago, great revolutions have taken place in the publishing industry. Fonts can be designed on the computer and printing can be done digitally. Complicated shapes like Chinese characters, as opposed to their Latin counterparts, can be designed and generated efficiently. As a result, many Chinese fonts have sprung up in recent years. In this talk, a technique of evaluating digital Chinese fonts will be presented. It involves an extensive survey of the distinctive features of over 35 typefaces ranging from Kai-ti, Hei-ti (black font), to YY-ti (ya-ya font). They were presented to a large group of subjects in the form of high and low frequency words, characters formed by about 16 different structures, and specific text passages of well-known poems. These textual materials were ranked by all subjects. Experimental results were tabulated and analyzed statistically related to typeface legibility, attractiveness, formal presentation, correlation, factor analysis, multi-dimensional scaling, and demographics of the subjects. These experimental results reveal an effective way of choosing legible digital fonts most suitable for comfortable reading of books, magazines, newspapers, and for display of texts on cell-phones, e-books, and digital libraries. The relationships among legibility, eye-strain, and myopia, will be discussed.

About the Speaker:

Professor Suen is the Director of CENPARMI and the Concordia Chair of AI & Pattern Recognition. He received his Ph.D. degree from the University of British Columbia. He has guided/hosted 76 visiting scientists and professors, and has supervised 75 doctoral and master's graduates. Dr. Suen is a fellow of the IEEE, IAPR, and the Academy of Sciences of the Royal Society of Canada. Currently he is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal of Pattern Recognition. He has organized numerous international conferences on pattern recognition, handwriting recognition, and document analysis. He has served several professional societies as President, Vice-President, Governor, and Director. He has given 180 invited talks at various industries and academic institutions around the globe, and has published 12 books and more than 480 papers.