Re: space (reply again, sorry)

Chris Lilley (
Wed, 25 Sep 1996 13:43:18 +0200 (DST)

Date: Wed, 25 Sep 1996 13:43:18 +0200 (DST)
From: Chris Lilley <>
Message-Id: <>
In-Reply-To: bosak@atlantic-83.Eng.Sun.COM (Jon Bosak)
To: bosak@atlantic-83.Eng.Sun.COM (Jon Bosak),,
Subject: Re: space (reply again, sorry)

On Sep 21, 11:51pm, Jon Bosak wrote:

> Code point 10/00 (decimal 160) is called NO-BREAK SPACE in ISO 8859-1
> (Latin Alphabet No. 1).  It is defined as follows:
>    6.3.2 NO-BREAK SPACE (NBSP)
>    A graphic character the visual representation of which consists of
>    the absence of a graphic symbol, for use when a line break is to
>    be prevented in the text as presented.

Acording to that definition, Hello&nbsp;There could be validly presented as
HelloThere. That has an absence of a graphical symbol and does not have a
linebreak. The text as quoted does not say that the writing position is
advanced or describe any other space-like properties.

It reads, infact, rather like a zero-width joining character, or something that
might supress automatic hyphenation. Autocalibration  might be presented as

text text Auto-

but Auto&nbsp;calibration would be presented as

text text

However, this is not what I and I guess most people assume is meant by a
non-breaking space. What I understand is:

1) it looks like a space (same width of space, etc
2) consecutive nbsp are not folded into one
3) you don't get a line break there

Given the official ISO definition quoted above, I can cite no
supporting evidence for two of those three assumptions....

Chris Lilley, W3C                          [ ]
Graphics and Fonts Guy            The World Wide Web Consortium              INRIA,  Projet W3C                       2004 Rt des Lucioles / BP 93
+33 93 65 79 87            06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex, France