Re: help on the notion of Zero Width Space

From: Kenneth Whistler (
Date: Fri Nov 07 1997 - 15:07:38 EST

> Can anybody tell me what the code point of FEFF ZERO WIDTH NO-BREAK SPACE is
> designed for ? can it be used as the possible marker or word delimiter in
> text ? Presumably, plain unicode text should be able to store the
> information of this code point.

U+FEFF is discussed at some length in the Unicode Standard, Version 2.0,
pages 6-131 to 6-132.

Its main function is as a byte order mark. It is commonly seen at the
beginning of a stream of plain Unicode text in this function, and thereby
also serves (especially for Windows) as a signature that a plain text
file consists of Unicode data.

It can also be used in plain Unicode text to indicate the absence of
a word break. In this sense it is works like U+00A0 NO-BREAK SPACE, but
unlike U+00A0 it is zero width, and so doesn't show up as a visible
space between other characters when displayed. U+FEFF differs from
U+200B ZERO WIDTH SPACE, since the latter is used to indicate where
a word break *should* be, as for example, indicating word boundaries
in Thai or Japanese text, where no visible spaces are used between


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