W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > May 2001

Re: first-word pseudo-element

From: Jan Roland Eriksson <jrexon@newsguy.com>
Date: Sat, 19 May 2001 17:36:19 +0200
To: www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <lm4dgtc33bcs04k6p96joncopvu2rco3kc@4ax.com>
On Thu, 17 May 2001 15:28:41 +0200, glazman@netscape.com (Daniel
Glazman) wrote:

>andrew.robertson@capitaes.co.uk wrote:
>>Couldn't the element allow the definition of a character to specify word
>In some languages, there are no written word separators...

Well, strictly speaking we don't have any "written word separators" in
Latin based languages either.

The specific (key) action of introducing a piece of white-space between
words is probably an invention that came with the typewriter at one

Traditional typography never had a "character" to represent a "word
separator", just a set of suitably formed blocks of lead that could be
used between the "pictures" that was built by using glyph's from some

All humans that can read, where ever we find them in the world, do read
through a process of "picture recognition" it's only the method to build
those pictures that differs.

We here in the western part of the world have a method to build our
"word pictures" from a basic set of (some 36-40?) basic building blocks.

In other parts of the world writers draw the "word pictures" directly.

Regardless of how the pictures are drawn, there is always some method
available for a human eye (or ear or fingertip) to recognize where one
picture ends and the next one starts.

It is the proper identification, of that basic psychological method to
recognize separate "word pictures", that needs to be codified in order
to come up with proper algorithms that can identify individual "word

My take is that this would be, basically, a process of lexical
recognition and should not be based on some specific codes supposed to
represent something that does not exist in reality.

Jan Roland Eriksson <jrexon@newsguy.com> (the Fox in the Chicken Shack :)
"The W3C is the hen, the standards are the eggs.
 You are the fox."  -- Daniel Glazman --
(in response to a comment of mine on the '_' CSS "errata" entry)
Received on Saturday, 19 May 2001 11:40:00 UTC

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