Re: bidi in Taiwanese Mandarin (was: bidi support)

From: Werner Lemberg (
Date: Mon Jul 14 1997 - 12:20:02 EDT

On Mon, 14 Jul 1997, Unicode Discussion wrote:

> > Say there is a Mandarin header, "Jinnian Taiwan GNP dadao 1.2 wan
> > Meiyuan" (Taiwan's GNP reached USD 12 000 this year) [amount
> > hypothetical], and it is typesetted from right to left. It would appear
> > as
> >
> > [yuan][mei][wan] 1.2 [dao][da] GNP [wan][tai][nian][jin]
> >
> > I am sure that two of the three biggest selling Mandarin newspapers here
> > (China Times, United Daily News) still typeset their headers like this
> > (even after the typesetting went computerized).
> Sorry for my earlier message today. The above example indeed needs
> full BIDI. But it is still a style issue in that this is not needed
> for ordinary presentation, i.e. if a browser displays it LTR, people
> still can read it.
> What seems needed is a feature in a style language (e.g. in CSS) to
> change the directionality of some set of characters (in this case
> the CJKV ideographs) to something different (in this case from
> strong LTR to strong RTL.

Yes. Consider the two Chinese words [mi][fong] and [fong][mi] (meaning
`bee' and `honey'). They use the same characters; if used as a horizontal
header the human will recognize from context which direction is the right
one, but a computer would like to see a direction marker IMHO...


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