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Re: CSS and East Asian Width

From: Xidorn Quan <quanxunzhen@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Dec 2015 18:54:04 +1100
Message-ID: <CAMdq698vF-uVDjCb8+4n2JoStZZRSV1PsZ7yk2DnrhfpJVQ1Ww@mail.gmail.com>
To: Timothy Chien <timdream@gmail.com>
Cc: WWW International <www-international@w3.org>, CJK discussion <public-i18n-cjk@w3.org>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>, 中文HTML5同樂會ML <public-html-ig-zh@w3.org>, Richard Ishida <ishida@w3.org>
On Thu, Dec 17, 2015 at 5:30 PM, Timothy Chien <timdream@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi,
>
> The Unicode® Standard Annex #11 have long defined a set of
> recommendations [1] on handling character width in East Asian context.
>
> [1] http://www.unicode.org/reports/tr11/#Recommendations
>
> I assume the recommendations are directed to handling the display of
> the data so it ought to be addressed in CSS. However, these remain
> unspecified in the CSS spec, and web authors have to workaround the
> problems (particularly, characters with ambiguous widths) by
> hard-coding OS font names or even shipping their own web font, to
> ensure width are displayed correctly in critical places, like ASCII
> art "images".

I don't really see anything which should be addressed but remains
unspecified in CSS in the section you mentioned. Could you point out
exactly which sentences do you think of?

For ASCII Art, I believe that you just need "monospace" generic font
family (optionally with "white-space: pre"). Not sure why authors have
to "workaround" it.

> Character grid [2] was a related proposal being mentioned by Mr.
> Ishida in [3], but it was removed from the current CSS Text spec [4].
> The current CSS Text spec does not specify any feature allow web
> authors to specify character width directly nor indirectly from, for
> example, HTML "lang" attribute.
>
> [2] http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/CR-css3-text-20030514/#document-grid
> [3] https://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-i18n-cjk/2015OctDec/0017.html
> [4] http://www.w3.org/TR/css3-text/

I believe character grid isn't about "to specify character width
directly or indirectly". It is about a special alignment rule when
narrow / proporational characters appear in wide / monospace document.

> Quick web searching shows there wasn't any discussion took place,
> ever. People have pointed out offline to me that there isn't a lot of
> interest on this either (particularly because people are able to
> address the issue are not the user of East Asian languages I guess?)
>
> So here it is. Is there any previous discussion/conclusion I am not
> aware of? Thanks!

For the character grid, there was actually some discussion happens in
TPAC2015. Florian proposed a simplified version of character grid
during CSSWG meeting there. Minutes can be found here [1] (see "Inline
Character Grid" section).

[1] https://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-style/2015Nov/0264.html

- Xidorn
Received on Thursday, 17 December 2015 07:55:25 UTC

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