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Re: Will spacing issue after italics EVER be addressed?

From: Mikko Rantalainen <mikko.rantalainen@peda.net>
Date: Tue, 10 Jan 2006 16:38:57 +0200
Message-ID: <43C3C701.7080303@peda.net>
To: www-html@w3.org

Bonnie Granat wrote:
> Mikko Rantalainen wrote:
>>
>>The actual problem is rendering text sequence "iiirrr" where the 
>>"iii" part is italiced and "rrr" marks regular text. If font 
>>subsystem doesn't support measuring the whole string "iiirrr" where 
>>parts of the string must be rendered with different fonts then the 
>>UA has no other way but to render "iii" and "rrr" as separate items 
>>and simply catenate those together. The thing is, the font subsystem 
>>is the only part of the whole process that has any *real* knowledge 
>>about the required spacing  (or kerning) between the "i" and "r". 
> 
> I'm talking about whole words, though, not parts of words, which I think
> you're addressing. Why can't some part of the system recognize when there's
> italics followed by a single space??

I didn't mean literal letters "i" and "r". UA should make a 
difference between a regular space and a slanted space. And usually 
string "  " (two spaces) should have different length if it's type 
were "ii" (italiced space, italiced space), "ri" (regular space, 
italiced space), "ir" or "rr". Most UAs incorrectly render all 
spaces alike and as a result you get the ugly spacing between 
italiced and normal text.

I consider the currently implemented behavior buggy but fixing it 
given the restrictions of existing operating systems will be really 
hard. I'm pretty sure that even though operating systems and HTML 
UAs supported this you'd still hit incorrectly designed font files 
every now and then.

Compare output of LaTeX and MS Word sometimes. There's a big 
difference... LaTeX doesn't even have an actual space character, 
instead it uses its own internal algorithm to position words and 
what the reader sees is just the gaps between the word positions.

To sum all of this: it's up to the text rendering subsystem to 
correctly render the requested text. If it isn't up to the task, 
there's nothing the content author can do to fix the problem. This 
isn't something that is broken because of HTML or CSS spec.

-- 
Mikko
Received on Tuesday, 10 January 2006 14:39:23 GMT

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