W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > August 2015

Re: [css-writing-modes] Propose writing-mode: sideways-left

From: Richard Ishida <ishida@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 21 Aug 2015 11:43:35 +0100
To: John Daggett <jdaggett@mozilla.com>, Jonathan Kew <jfkthame@gmail.com>
Cc: Florian Rivoal <florian@rivoal.net>, Koji Ishii <kojiishi@gmail.com>, fantasai <fantasai.lists@inkedblade.net>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <55D700D7.1050406@w3.org>
On 21/08/2015 07:32, John Daggett wrote:
> guess it boils down to this for me: for 99% of the users of the
> 'writing-mode' property, namely authors in Japan, Taiwan and Hong Kong
> laying out vertical text runs, the sideways-* values will be a confusing
> addition. As you describe you're basically mixing in the ability to
> rotate horizontal text layout into a property used to choose between
> horizontal and vertical layout systems. To do so won't be the end of the
> world but it will introduce unfortunate confusion.


i think it's incorrect to assume that 99% of the writing-mode users want 
to write in CJK characters.  At the beginning of this discussion i was 
trying to write an article for content authors about how to do vertical 
text for CJK, but the questions i was getting in email and on twitter 
were all from people who wanted to know whether this would solve their 
problems for Latin or other normally horizontal scripts. They wanted to 
run the text sideways alongside something, either in a table heading or 
alongside a picture, etc.

when i starting thinking about that, things seemed rather unnecessarily 
complex.

if you use the old approach and want to run some Latin text from bottom 
to top in, say, a table heading you'd have to think around the mechanics 
a little to say

th { writing-mode:vertical-lr; text-orientation: sideways-left; }

In the new model, just

th { writing-mode: sideways-lr; }

seems much simpler and quite logical and straightforward to me, and 
seems to match the way Microsoft Word handles text too, which is a big 
plus for many users.

but in addition to that, when applying the old model i found myself 
worrying about where start/end would now be, and whether the Latin text 
would wrap as expected, because i was led to overthink the mechanics. 
With the new model, that just seems straighforward.

so i agree with Jonathan's points, and i think that the new model 
actually makes it easier for content authors to use, both for rotated 
horizontal scripts and for vertical CJK.

ri
Received on Friday, 21 August 2015 10:43:45 UTC

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