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Re: bidi discussion list was: Bidi Markup vs Unicode control characters

From: Stephen Deach <sdeach@adobe.com>
Date: Mon, 15 Aug 2005 07:24:28 -0700
To: Martin Duerst <duerst@it.aoyama.ac.jp>, Tex Texin <tex@xencraft.com>, Ognyan Kulev <ogi@fmi.uni-sofia.bg>
Cc: Stephen Deach <sdeach@adobe.com>, Addison Phillips <addison.phillips@quest.com>, www-international@w3.org, Richard Ishida <ishida@w3.org>, Bert Bos <bert@w3.org>
Message-id: <>

Well, DIR/direction is used in both HTML and CSS to control the layout of 
tables and other higher-level (page-/column-/block-placement-level) layout 
issues, as well as the bidi behavior in spans. Unicode-bidi applies only to 
paragraph content & span-level objects; so splitting them in some way makes 
sense. It probably doesn't buy us much at this point in time to debate 
whether adding a property to control the higher-level layout issues and 
having the unicode-bidi property carry the combined embed-RTL, 
override-RTL, embed-LTR, override-LTR would have been better.

At 2005.08.15-17:41(+0900), Martin Duerst wrote:
>At 16:10 05/08/10, Tex Texin wrote:
> >So xml:lang might be suggestive, but it is not explicit or informative
> >enough to base bidi layout upon it alone.
> >
> >That's also why CSS doesn't just have "direction", but also
> >"unicode-bidi" (normal, embed, bidi-override)
>With respect to overrides, you are right that xml:lang would not
>provide enough information. But the reason for having two CSS
>properties (rather than e.g. just one with the values
>normal, embed-ltr, embed-rtl, override-ltr, override-rtl)
>is mainly to make it easier to specify a stylesheet
>(use CSS cascading and inheritance in intelligent ways).
>The proposal to split into two properties came from Hakon Lie
>when the two of us were working on bidi support in CSS.
>Regards,    Martin.

---Steve Deach
Received on Monday, 15 August 2005 14:25:00 UTC

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