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Improving fontinst (was re: 8r fonts)

Thanks to the reactions to the threath I started about rewriting
fontinst into PERL I have I now have a vague feeling about the amount
of work that needs to be done. If porting is worth the effort will also
depend on what the future of PS fonts will bring us. Will the PS fonts
ever stabilize or do we expect many changes?

At the moment fontinst it is a hybrid package consisting of TeX code
(generating PL and VPL files), PERL code (checksums), C-code (cs
utility) tied together via Makefile's.  My greatest concern is the fact
that its use and maintenance is very tedious and error prone. Also for
the people who wrote it. Culminating in beta-releases with missing
ligatures and incorrect or missing checksums.

Whenever Alan and Sebastian, who is already using PERL instead of UNIX
shell scripts in parts of the process, want to port fontinst to PERL I
want to help. Not by painfully studying and converting TeX code into
PERL code. But by starting from scratch with the main program structure
that we need in order to generate PS fonts with correct check sums. And
for that part I need his knowledge about the total process. I can bring in
some experience with PERL and checksums.

Let us hope the best for fontinst and the fonts created with it!