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RE: controlling digits substitution in IE/FF (Arabic/Hindi/Decimal)

From: Jonathan Rosenne <rosennej@qsm.co.il>
Date: Tue, 2 Jun 2009 09:18:16 +0300
To: <www-international@w3.org>
Cc: <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <001e01c9e349$ec4e1df0$c4ea59d0$@co.il>
In some areas of the world, Hindi digits are used. In other areas, Arabic
digits are used. When someone looks at a web page in Arabic, he could be
expected to see the digits he is used to.

The viewer's preference may be independent of the preference of the
originator of the web page.

The exceptions are when the viewer does not care, or when the author of the
web page wants to indicate specifically which form to use, for example in
explaining the relationship between the two systems.


-----Original Message-----
From: www-international-request@w3.org
[mailto:www-international-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of fantasai
Sent: Thursday, May 14, 2009 9:28 PM
To: daniel.goldschmidt@gmail.com
Cc: www-international@w3.org; www-style@w3.org
Subject: Re: controlling digits substitution in IE/FF (Arabic/Hindi/Decimal)

Daniel Goldschmidt wrote:
> Hey,
> In Arabic (and other language) the European Decimal digits can be 
> substitute by Hindi digit depending the context.
> On Windows platform there is a possibility to set the digits 
> substitution behavior to as follow:
>  - Context (the default)
>  - None
>  - National
> (Control Panel -> Regional and Language Setting -> Regional Options -> 
> Customize)
> I'm experiencing differences in the behavior of  Firefox, Chrome, and 
> Internet Explorer, while displaying digits in pages with dir="RTL" (with 
> Regional Options set to Arabic(Egypt)):
> In Firefox/Chrome the digits are not substituted (European Decimal 
> digits are displayed)
> In IE digits are substituted (Hindi digits are displayed)
> Questions:
> What is the reason for those behaviour of the different browsers?
> Can I control (using CSS or markups) the behaviour? (I cannot expect the 
> end-user to change his/her setting in the control panel...).

In my opinion, the browser should not be doing any such substitution
in web pages. Although the browser's UI should be affected by system
localization, web pages displayed in it should not. If CSS needs to
have controls to enable these kinds of transformations, then we can
add them to the 'text-transform' property. But by default, I don't
think it makes sense for this kind of automatic substitution to affect
web page content.

[CCing www-style.]

Received on Tuesday, 2 June 2009 06:18:54 UTC

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