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Re: Suggestion to add "spacing between sentences" to CSS3 Line WD

From: Shelby Moore <shelby@coolpage.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 2002 18:07:01 -0600
Message-Id: <4.1.20021216180401.01bf2bb0(null)>
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: www-style@w3.org


>On Mon, 16 Dec 2002, Shelby Moore wrote:
>>>
>>> I don't understand why a sentence would ever have two spaces after it,
>>> and I have often wondered where this idea came from. Certainly I don't
>>> see it in professional typography.
>> 
>> What kind of font did original typewriters use?
>
>| Typewriters are monospaced... that is, every character took up the
>| exact same amount of space. A typewriter by design has to assume
>| that every character is the same size. Thus, an .i. takes up the
>| same amount of space as an .m.. So in order to distinguish the
>| spaces between words and the spaces between sentences, we press the
>| spacebar twice. That creates an extra big space.
>| 
>| As a rule, computer fonts use proportional spacing. That is,
>| computers know that the .i. is slimmer than the .m. so they
>| automatically assign it a less space. This produces text which has a
>| much clearer flow to the eye. As a result, adding extra spaces after
>| periods to make the text flow visually clearer is unnecessary .and
>| unprofessional. This also holds true for spaces after colons,
>| semi-colons, exclamation points, etc.
> -- http://www.jmort.com/type.htm
>
>
>| In the nineteenth century, which was a dark and inflationary age in
>| typography and type design, many compositors were encouraged to
>| stuff extra space between sentences. Generations of twentieth-
>| century typists were then taught to do the same, by hitting the
>| spacebar twice after every period. Your typing as well as yyour
>| typesetting will benefit from unlearning this quaint Victorian
>| habit. As a general rule, no more than a single space is required
>| after a period, colon, or any other mark of punctuation. Larger
>| spaces (e.g., en spaces) _replace_ punctuation.
> -- Robert Bringhurst, /The Elements of Typographic Style/
>
>
>Basically, in modern fonts, the period and space are sized so that
>they cause the right amount of space to occur between sentences. (I
>find even monospace fonts aree adequate in this respect now,
>actually.) So the entire problem has already been solved -- by font
>designers. We don't need to solve it in CSS. :-)


NO because the screen does not have enough resolution (yet).

Also because it is not the font designer's preference that should take
priority of the user's preference.  That is why we have CSS style for
things such as vertical alignments, etc..


>> Define "aliasing".
>
>I didn't use the word. I have no idea what it means without context.

Please go back to my original post and read forward.  And please read the
page I linked from that original post.

I would repeat it again here, but that might be burdensome to those who
already read it, as well to me.

-Shelby Moore
Received on Monday, 16 December 2002 19:06:36 GMT

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