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Acorn Adds Character with help from Bitstream

October 8, 1996

The Acorn Computer Group plc of Cambridge, England today announced that support of Bitstream's TrueDoc Font Imaging Technology is to be included as part of the operating system it is using for products in the desktop, Internet, Digital TV, videophone and similar markets.

Acorn has a strong background in the use of outline front systems and pioneered the use of anti-aliased text and anti-twittering code to ensure that even small writing can be displayed on a range of display types from a low resolution monitor, such as a TV set, to high quality displays.

Combining their previous work with that of Bitstream, Acorn will gain access to libraries of character fonts including the extensive 16bit Asian font sets.

The Bitstream technology includes a highly compact font format (PFR) that is being increasingly used to transport fonts, and this maps well to Acorn's developments with Network Computers and other multimedia devices such as multimedia kiosks and desktop PC's. This will enable manufacturers all around the world to develop products using Acorn's technologies, knowing that they can quickly adapt these to different markets and still benefit from the ability to scale fonts, display them on TV's and transmit them across networks with minimal overhead.

Andy Martin, business development manager, Bitstream UK, adds: "Acorn is one of the leaders in the information technology market and working with them is beneficial for the development of our technology. Between us we can provide a high quality product range using the best of both companies' technical expertise."

Malcolm Bird, Chief Executive, Acorn's Network Computing Division, comments: "Acorn is increasingly working in the world of open standards and we are always looking for emerging technologies that support open communications across multiple platforms. In our quest to supply technology around the world we also need to support a wide variety of character fonts including the 16bit fonts for eastern markets. The Bitstream technology meets our aims and we have been pleased to work with a team who share many of our goals."

This development will widen the accessibility of Acorn's technology across new platforms and will support Acorn's plans to ensure its operating system will, in time become widely used in embedded systems."

Understanding Bitstream's Type Technologies:

Bitstream's TrueDoc Imaging Technology is the latest in Bitstream's 15-plus years of experience in the digital type industry. Originally designed for compressing and transporting formatted text across networks and the Internet, Bitstream's TrueDoc technology is an optimal solution for embedded systems due to its small size and high quality. TrueDoc consists of three components. TrueDoc's character shape recorder (CSR, approximately 55K) records character shapes during the creation of a document, stores the character shapes in an easily transportable and highly compressed data structure known as the portable font resource (PFR) and then TrueDoc's character shape player (CSP) recreates the characters on demand when the document is viewed. The CSP (approximately 45K) also offers full 16 bit character support and various output modules including greyscaling.

About Bitstream Inc.

Bitstream is a leading developer of graphical and imaging communication software solutions. Bitstream licenses type libraries and font technology to hundreds of hardware and software developers worldwide.

Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass. USA, Bitstream licenses its products and technologies directly through subsidaries, business agents and distributors in the US, Europe and the Pacific Rim. For more information, contact Bitstream at 617-497-6222 or visit the home page on the world wide web at http://www.bitstream.com/

Acorn Computer Group plc is one of the leading groups of high technology innovators and suppliers in the world. Within the group Acorn has expertise in the development and marketing of advanced technology products, services and licenses which exploit emerging world standards in interactive multimedia, from Internet to broadband digital iTV.

The above is a Press release from Acorn Computers Ltd., 8/10/96.