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Re: CJK Letters some questions so I can compute font family sizes.

From: Christophe Strobbe <strobbe@hdm-stuttgart.de>
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2017 18:50:38 +0200
To: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
Message-ID: <e772278c-0122-d8ba-7fb5-d719b399e972@hdm-stuttgart.de>
Hi Wayne,

I'll just cover Chinese. Each Chinese character "fills" a square of the
same size, regardless how complex it is. ("Same size" obviously varies
with font size.)
As far as I know, the characters don't change depending on text
orientation, i.e. left-to-right versus top-to-bottom.
Fonts for Chinese can vary a bit in how much they look like characters
written with a brush. For example, compare the fonts "DF Fang Song", "DF
Kai Sho" and "DF Ming" (for traditional Chinese characters) on the page
<http://pinyin.info/news/2011/taoyuan-international-airport-to-adopt-new-style-for-signs/>:
the font "DF Kai Sho" looks most "brush-like". The samples represent the
three most common font types for Chinese: Ming ("Mincho" in Japanese),
Kai and Fang Song. (See also the font sample at
<http://birdtrack.com/TypSampB.pdf>.) There are other types of fonts,
but the complexity of Chinese characters (compared to alphabets such as
Latin) and the requirement of legibility limit what you can do. For
example, there are no italics (or italics cause the characters to be
rendered as oblique). Even a bold font weight can make characters hard
to read.  That doesn't mean you can't have fancy Chinese fonts (see e.g.
the samples at
<https://chinesefontdesign.com/tag/simplified-chinese-font>) but you
wouldn't use these for "normal" text.
The "one square per character" rule also applies to punctuation, except
for the middle dot used to separate parts of a non-Chinese name (e.g.
列奥纳多‧达‧芬奇, a Chinese transcription of "Leonardo da Vinci"). These
punctuation marks are therefore known as "fullwidth punctuation", as
opposed to the "halfwidth punctuation" used in text in the Latin alphabet.

As far as I know, the "one square per character" rule also applies to
Japanese kanji, hiragana and katakana (in spite of the fact that kana
are much simpler than most kanji). (Japanese also has half-width kana
from the early days of Japanese computing, but it seems that they are
today only used in specific settings - according to Wikipedia:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Half-width_kana.)

Best regards,

Christophe Strobbe


On 31/05/2017 22:50, Wayne Dick wrote:
> These are some basic questions about CJK characters.
>
> Are they square?
> Does it matter if we measure width or height?
> Specifically,  will lr layout give the same letter spacing as vertical-rl?
> What are the unicode-8 code sequences for visible characters in:
> Chinese, Korean and Japanese?
> Does font family vary as much in these languages as in Latin languages?
> Wayne
>

-- 
Christophe Strobbe
Akademischer Mitarbeiter
Responsive Media Experience Research Group (REMEX)
Hochschule der Medien
Nobelstraße 10
70569 Stuttgart
Tel. +49 711 8923 2749

“I drink tea and I know things.” 
Falsely attributed to Christophe Lannister.
Received on Thursday, 1 June 2017 16:51:14 UTC

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