Can anyone suggest a method of scaling a solid to the length of a piece of text?
e.g. when I type something in a coloured solid appears behind (almost like highlighting it) to the exact number of characters?
If anyone can suggest a free font which is entirely solid boxes for each character, that might help!
Many text generators can be set to type over a background box. I'm not at my AE box today but I know I've got at least two text systems that do that. One is probably a golden oldiefrom DigiEffects.
In the olden days we just did this by hand. You can build a precomp that has several boxes in it, just copy and paste the ones you need. Once you have the height of the letterforms, you can easily change the x-scale. If you have lower case ascenders and descenders, you can easily stack two copies of the same box, ofsetting one in the y dimension.