by Goatmeal

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This font is a recreation of Richard Wisan's "ELITEQ.LQN" font file (c) 1990 for use with the program LQMATRIX.  From Mr. Wisan's comment in the LQMATRIX documentation file: "ELITEQ.LQN: resembles Epson's resident Roman font, but slightly reduced to suit elite spacing."

LQMATRIX was a font design program for use with Epson LQ [Letter Quality] 24-pin dot matrix printers and compatibles.  Created by noted linguist, anthropologist, and photographer J. David Sapir, the program had its beginnings in 1985 and was published by Jimmy Paris Software; the last known version that I have been able to find is version 4.44 (1991).  Mr. Sapir included font set submissions from LQMATRIX users in some of the later updates; my version includes Mr. Wisan's file.  A screenshot of the program is included in the comments section below.

While the graphics mode of dot matrix printers could print rather complex pictures, it remained extremely slow for large amounts of specialized text.  By uploading an LQMATRIX font file into the printer's RAM, the temporary font could be used interchangeablely with the printer's resident ROM fonts.  The result was a much faster print speed with little sacrifice in quality -- plus, one could design their own special glyphs or characters to suit their needs!

This was accomplish by a sophisticated design program included with LQMATRIX, whereby users could create and save characters or symbols on a 24 vertical by 15 horizontal grid for the ASCII locations 032–126 (although 001-127 were permitted).  One could even place dots in the 14 half-positions along the horizontal.

I have cleaned-up some of the curvatures and harmonized a number of glyphs (along with outright modification of a few, like W and w), yet they still adhere to the same 24 x 15 grid.  The original designs can be found beginning in the "More Latin" section.  Because the characters for "left single quotation mark" and "right single quotation mark" were not present in DOS, I have "created" them here for sake of completion.

Info: Created on 8th April 2018 . Last edited on 19th June 2018.
License Creative Commons
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Comment by Goatmeal 19th June 2018
Comment by Goatmeal 19th June 2018

So good. Ture artists can work in any medium. I'm always in awe.

Comment by thalamic 19th June 2018

Thanks for the great writeup @goatmeal. I'd never heard of LQMATRIX before. FontStruct in DOS!

Comment by Rob Meek (meek) 19th June 2018

@thalamic - Thanks for the kind words as always, my friend!  :^)

Comment by Goatmeal 20th June 2018

@Rob Meek (meek) - Yes, Rob, it is VERY similar to FontStruct.  I did not show the grid in the sample picture; being a limited-color DOS program, it is far too "messy."  Some of the editor functions were that you could select and move areas within a glyph, rotate the glyph (not perfectly, of course), and use Boolean logic functions to merge glyphs.  Once the font was uploaded to the printer, switching between the RAM & ROM fonts required adding special print codes within the text to trigger the output changes.

While in college during the early 1990s, I used LQMATRIX with my Epson AP 5500 and Word 5.0/5.5 to make science-related symbols and glyphs for chemistry and physics reports.  Later, in the mid-1990s, I recreated copy protection symbols for my DOS games; I would have them all collected on a few reference pages instead of hidden away in various manuals.  Upon discovering FontStruct, I recreated many of these symbols again, and they are still in present in my FontStructions.   However, now these old manuals can be found almost instantly on the Internet...  :^)

Comment by Goatmeal 20th June 2018

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