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[Bug 22081] New: Needs to be clear whether "Spacebar" key value should be used when non-ASCII space (U+20) is inputted

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Sat, 18 May 2013 00:36:49 +0000
To: www-dom@w3.org
Message-ID: <bug-22081-4009@http.www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/>

            Bug ID: 22081
           Summary: Needs to be clear whether "Spacebar" key value should
                    be used when non-ASCII space (U+20) is inputted
    Classification: Unclassified
           Product: WebAppsWG
           Version: unspecified
          Hardware: PC
                OS: Windows NT
            Status: NEW
          Severity: normal
          Priority: P2
         Component: DOM3 Events
          Assignee: travil@microsoft.com
          Reporter: masayuki@d-toybox.com
        QA Contact: public-webapps-bugzilla@w3.org
                CC: mike@w3.org, www-dom@w3.org

With some keyboard layouts, Spacebar causes other non-ASCII whitespace (U+20)
such as non-breakable space (U+A0), ZWSP or some other space like character of

On Windows and Mac, the native virtual keycode VK_SPACE and kVKSpace indicates
physical spacebar key event. Therefore, if on such platform, it does make sense
"Spacebar" not depend on actual input character.

On the other hand, on Linux (GTK/GDK), native key events tell keysym which
indicate actual input character. And there is no strict way to know whether a
native key event is caused by physical space key or not. Therefore, Firefox 23
will use "Spacebar" only when native key event causes GDK_Space keysym. That
means if the space key causes non-brekable space or some other whitespace like
characters, "Spacebar" isn't set to .key attribute only on Linux.

This inconsistency is too bad. So, we need to improve the consistency in the
future version. For that, we need to clearer guideline for "Spacebar" in D3E

Currently, D3E spec says: The Space (Spacebar) key (' ').

This explanation sounds like the "Spacebar" indicates both physical space key
and a special key name for " " input key.

I believe that "Spacebar" should indicate the physical space key. I.e., it
should be similar to numpad's "Devide", "Separator" and "Decimal".

Then, web applications can implement physical space key as a shortcut key with
any keyboard layout.

If "Spacebar" indicates physical space key (or used for a key which inputs
space like character), we can improve the Linux version of Gecko because we can
check unmodified input character of each key event.

On the other hand, somebody thinks .key should indicate current function with
modifier state. Therefore, "Spacebar" should be a special key name for ASCII
whitespace input key. See this thread:

I'd like to clearer definition for this issue in D3E spec. And of course, I
believe that it's better "Spacebar" to indicate the physical key rather than to
be a special key name for U+20.

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Received on Saturday, 18 May 2013 00:36:55 UTC

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