In article <jl8d0l...@mid.individual.net
> Hello, I naively assumed that when I did setfont (foo) show that the
> kerning pairs in the font tables would influence spacing.
PostScript type 1 fonts don't have kerning information in the font.
> I understand now that it does not. You're supposed to use kshow and
> apply the character spacing yourself.
> Fair enough, but then how do I get the "base" kerning for a character
> pair from within postscript, or do you have to parse the afm files
You have to parse the AFM files (or kern tables in a TrueType font)
> I understand that I can specify any kerning I want and that's a good
> thing, but wouldn't you usually want that to be a multiplier applied to
> the font's "base" kerning pairs?
I can't pretend to know the reasoning behind the original design, but I
would suggest that kerning is regarded as being like all other spacing
control (widow/orphan/rivers etc) to be managed by the layout