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Figurines - The Alpine Fonts

Palview continues to support the Alpine Family of chess fonts created by the late Steve Smith. Although Steve is no longer with us, his son continues the business at: Alpine Electronics.

The Alpine chess fonts allow your visitors to view chess figurines on the pages created by Palview. But your visitors must have one of the Alpine Figurine fonts installed on their computer to actually see the figurines. If they do not have any of the Alpine fonts then they will see the usual standard piece letters PNBRQK instead (or whatever piece letters are used by the pcletters INI option).

Here is an example of what a page would look like using the Linares Figurines:

You may wonder just how the Alpine Figurine fonts work. Basically, each of the piece letters in each of the Figurine fonts have been replaced within the font by the figurine of the corresponding piece. So when you type a capital 'N' while using the font, you will see a figurine Knight. The same applies for each of the pieces N,B,R,Q and K. What's more, a number of other languages are also supported by the Figurine fonts. For example, the Danish piece letters are S,L,T,D and K and if you type these letters using the Figurine font you will still see the appropriate figurine for each piece. Each of the Figurine fonts also contain all of the usual numbers and other commonly used characters needed to write the moves of a game. This allows us to write move sequences like 1. e4 e5 2. Bc4?! a6? 3. Qh5 Nc6?? 4. Qxf7# without needing to switch to a different font for the numbers, period, etc.

Because there are a number of languages, there are actually two different Figurine fonts that come with each of the Linares, Hastings, and Zurich font sets. Using Linares as an example, one font is called LinaresFigurine while the other is called LinaresFigurineAlternate. The languages supported by these two Figurine fonts can be seen in the following table where 'F' stands for the xxxFigurine and 'A' stands for the xxxFigurineAlternate fonts. Note that those languages not supported by either of the Figurine fonts are not marked at all.

          Czech        P J S V D K
F         Danish       B S L T D K
F         Dutch        O P L T D K
F         English      P N B R Q K
          Estonian     P R O V L K
          Finnish      P R L T D K
A         French       P C F T D R
F         German       B S L T D K
A         Hungarian    G H F B V K
          Icelandic    P R B H D K
A         Italian      P C A T D R
F         Norwegian    B S L T D K
          Polish       P S G W H K
          Portuguese   P C B T D R
          Romanian     P C N T D R
A         Spanish      P C A T D R
F         Swedish      B S L T D K

In order to use the Alpine Figurine fonts, you must change the font-family in a number of Palview's CSS classes. Essentially all you are doing here is telling the browser to use one of the Alpine Figurine fonts to display the chess moves. Palview will provide you with a special CSS file already prepared for use with these fonts which you can use straight away, or you can edit it to suit your own personal needs. Either way it will provide you with an example of how the CSS classes should be set up.

Before we look at the individual classes that must be changed, we should first examine the use of the figurines INI option. When set to on, this option tells Palview that you are going to use the Alpine fonts for figurines. The program will then look for chess moves in commentary and will replace each instance of a piece letter with the appropriate chess figurine. This is done in the Html by using a SPAN with the pf class:

.pf {font-family: LinaresFigurine, ZurichFigurine, HastingsFigurine;
     font-style: normal;}

The Html will then appear something like this:

<SPAN class='pf'>N</SPAN>f6

The program will also look for any slashed piece letters within comments and will change them to figurines as well. (If figurines is off, then the program will simply remove the slash.) You can use a backslash before any of the PGN piece letters in your comments so that Palview will be able to recognize them as true piece letters. This allows you to write common short hands like: \K-side, \Q-side, \K+\P vs. \K ending, etc.

The first CSS class that must altered to include the Alpine fonts is the pm class. This class is used for displaying the actual game moves themselves.

/* Palview Moves -- for the actual game moves */

.pm {text-indent: 0em; text-align: justify;
    font-family: LinaresFigurine, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif;
    font-size: 12pt; font-weight: bold; color: black;}

The pf class should not need to be altered since it is always the same in each CSS file. This class is used for displaying figurines for any chess moves found in comments themselves. It will also be used to change any backslashed piece letters to figurines as well.

/* Figurine -- Used to Transform Commentary 'moves' to Figs */

.pf {font-family: LinaresFigurine, ZurichFigurine, HastingsFigurine;
     font-style: normal;}

The next two classes allow us to show variation moves using figurines. When moves are linked, using the movelinks INI option, Palview will use these two classes.

/* The actual linked Variation moves (always in 'pc?' class) */

DIV.pgm .pc A {color:green; font-family: LinaresFigurine;}
DIV.pgm .pc2 A {color:green; font-family: LinaresFigurine;}

The next two classes are the counterparts to the above. They are used to display variation moves when moves are not linked.

/* Palview uses EM Html Tag to surround variation moves
   when movelinks are NOT used. */

DIV.pgm .pc EM {color:green; font-style:normal;
                font-family: LinaresFigurine, Verdana, Arial,

DIV.pgm .pc2 EM {font-style:italic;
                 font-family: LinaresFigurine, Verdana, Arial,

The last CSS class that must altered is the pt class. This class is used for displaying the moves under the board in the Board Caption.

/* Board Caption */

.pt {text-indent: 0em; text-align: center;
     font-family: LinaresFigurine, Verdana, Arial, sans-serif;
     font-size: 12pt; font-weight: bold; color: black;

A note of warning is appropriate here. If you are going to alter this class to display moves as figurines under the board, then you will not be able to use a Captioned Diagram, otherwise any regular text will be displayed by the Figurine fonts as a confusing mix of chess symbols. The moves themselves will be displayed correctly, but other text will not. (For more information on Captioned Diagrams, please see The Captioned Diagram.)

We would like to thank Alpine for their great collection of chess fonts which we have supported in Palview. For more information on these fine fonts and how to obtain them, please visit their site at Alpine.