Peter mentions that Word uses language information only for selecting
proofing tools, but that is not all. Word uses language for many things:
Determining date format
Determining sort order
Controlling line breaking, word breaking (for scripts that need it)
Determining many default properties
Once the necessary infrastructure (fonts, UniScribe support) is available in
at least a prototype testable form, and if I am still running things :),
you'll probably see Word start displaying language-appropriate glyphs from
fonts if they exist. From the application perspective all we need is to be
able to add a language parameter to our text rendering, and the OS should
take care of it (UniScribe is part of Windows). These things take time. I
suspect that given the standard priorities, the languages that we see this
first will be CJK. Once the infrastructure is there, third parties could
create fonts with the necessary glyph tables for languages we didn't do
Group Program Manager
From: Peter Constable [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Wednesday, January 19, 2000 1:17 PM
To: Unicode List
Subject: Re: Language Tagging And Unicode
>Does this mean that Windows' OpenType layout services does
support language system (even if MS are not currently making
use of this in Office etc. applications)?
>The OpenType spec says e.g. for GSUB (glyph substitution)
>1 Locate the current script in the GSUB ScriptList table.
>2 If the language system is known, search the script for the
correct LangSys table; otherwise, use the script's default
language system (DefaultLangSys table).
>3 The LangSys table provides index numbers into the GSUB
FeatureList table to access a required feature and a number
of additional features.
>Do MS applications that use OT currently bypass (2) and just
go straight to the default language system for any given
My understanding is that Uniscribe *currently* does this (but I
expect that will change).
>(Text in word Word at least has a language attribute so
presumably that application "knows" the language system.)
Currently, Word only uses this for selecting proofing tools.
>I've been trying to build OT fonts based on the assumption
that applications will use the LangSys table. Am I wasting my
No, I pray not! I doubt you're alone on this.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Tue Jul 10 2001 - 17:20:58 EDT