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Re: For review: Creating SVG Tiny Pages in Arabic, Hebrew and other Right-to-Left Scripts

From: Matitiahu Allouche <matial@il.ibm.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Dec 2008 10:37:31 +0200
To: "Richard Ishida" <ishida@w3.org>
Cc: "'Chris Lilley'" <chris@w3.org>, "'Doug Schepers'" <schepers@w3.org>, www-international@w3.org, www-international-request@w3.org
Message-ID: <OF5A7A113B.FF036ABC-ONC225751A.00254ED2-C225751A.002F611B@il.ibm.com>
Here are a few comments, some rather minor and others quite essential.

1) In section "Be logical, not visual", "Nowadays almost all text on the 
Web in in logical order." => "Nowadays almost all text on the Web is in 
logical order."

2) In the example titled "Changing the direction of a text element.", 
   a)There is no code accounting for the display of "525520" on the last 
line. This is also true for the later example based on this one, titled "
Script is not significant for text-align.".
   b) We find the statement:  "Without the direction property, the text 
"(ISOC-IL)" would, incorrectly, appear on the right side of the line, as 
would the number on the second line."  This is not true concerning the 
"second" line (I assume this is the line containing the number 7).  A 
number following Hebrew or Arabic text will always be considered by the 
Unicode Bidi Algorithm as being part of a RTL run and will be displayed on 
the left side of the preceding text.

3) In example "text-align set to start for RTL text", the use of Nastaliq 
font might be quite pleasing on the eyes, but makes comparing the 
displayed text with the source text quite difficult for readers not 
proficient in Arabic.  I suggest to keep the font used for final display 
identical or reasonably similar to the one used for showing the source.

4) In section "Bidi algorithm basics", we find: "The context is taken from 
the directionality set on the nearest parent element that set the 
direction. In SVG this may have been set explicitly by using the direction 
property, or it may be inherited from the default directionality of the 
svg tag, which is LTR."
It is somewhat confusing since the first sentence addresses setting the 
direction explicitly while the second sentence mentions inheriting a 
default.  I suggest the following rewording.
"The context is taken from the directionality set on the nearest parent 
element that sets the direction explicitly by using the direction 
property, or, in the absence of such a parent, it is inherited from the 
default directionality of the svg tag, which is LTR."

5) We find:  "The really interesting part comes when a space or 
punctuation falls between two strongly typed characters with different 
directionality. In such a case the neutral character, or characters, will 
be treated as if they have the directionality of the overall paragraph or 
context. This has the effect of creating a boundary between directional 
runs."
This is not quite precise, since what creates the boundary is not the fact 
that neutral characters are treated according to the paragraph 
directionality.  The boundary is there because there are two strongly 
typed characters with different directionality.
I suggest to remove the sentence "This has the effect of creating a 
boundary between directional runs."  If the notion of boundary is 
important, it could be mentioned in relation with the "two strongly typed 
characters with different directionality".

6) We find: "(Note, however, that in this particular case, it may be 
better to use the markup. This is because some markup ought to be there 
already, so that you can label the quotation as being in Arabic using 
xml:lang="ar".)"
The relevance of using xml:lang="ar" to the matter is not clear. On the 
contrary, it could suggest that specifying the language would have an 
effect on the problem at hand, namely how to correctly position the 
exclamation mark, which is not true. I suggest to remove the mention of 
xml:lang.

7) We find: "the bidirectional algorithm sees the neutral comma as part of 
the Arabic text. It is interpreting the first two arabic words and the 
comma as a list in Arabic. In fact the comma is part of the English text"
The text mentions only the comma and ignores the adjacent space which 
illustrates exactly the same case.  Either remove the space from the 
example, or mention the space in the explaining text.

8) In section "Mirrored characters", we find: "This means that, whether 
inputting content in Arabic/Hebrew or Latin script, you would use the same 
LEFT PARENTHESIS character at the beginning of the parenthesized text."
This might be misleading: in many environments, input methods swap the 
parentheses when using the keyboard to enter Arabic or Hebrew, so that to 
input an opening parenthesis the user presses the Right Parenthesis key. I 
suggest to replace the reference to inputting content by a reference to 
how the content is stored.

9) In the table listing Unicode control characters, the value of 
unicode-bidi for RLO and LRO should be "bidi-override".

10) In the whole document, the word "context" is used with different 
meanings: in most occurrences, it designates the direction set by using 
direction="xxx" or inherited from a parent component. In other 
occurrences, especially in section "Mirrored characters", it designates 
the direction implied by neighbouring characters.
I suggest to replace the terms "context" and "overall context" (first 
meaning) by "base direction", leaving the term "context" when used with 
the second meaning.  Together with this first suggestion, or independently 
if the first suggestion is not accepted, I suggest to add the word "local" 
(giving "local context") when the word context is used with the second 
meaning.


Shalom (Regards),  Mati
           Bidi Architect
           Globalization Center Of Competency - Bidirectional Scripts
           IBM Israel




"Richard Ishida" <ishida@w3.org> 
Sent by: www-international-request@w3.org
08/12/2008 22:33

To
<www-international@w3.org>
cc
"'Chris Lilley'" <chris@w3.org>, "'Doug Schepers'" <schepers@w3.org>
Subject
For review: Creating SVG Tiny Pages in Arabic, Hebrew and other 
Right-to-Left Scripts

http://www.w3.org/International/tutorials/svg-tiny-bidi/

Comments are being sought on this tutorial prior to final release. Please 
send any comments to www-international@w3.org. We expect to publish a 
final version in one to two weeks.

This version incorporates comments from Chris Lilley and Doug Schepers.

RI

============
Richard Ishida
Internationalization Lead
W3C (World Wide Web Consortium)

http://www.w3.org/International/
http://rishida.net/
Received on Tuesday, 9 December 2008 08:38:16 GMT

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