RE: Hebrew (was RE: Unicode Transcriptions)

From: Jonathan Rosenne (
Date: Mon Feb 19 2001 - 10:42:19 EST

IE for MAC does not include bidi.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: []
> Sent: Monday, February 19, 2001 3:46 PM
> To: Unicode List
> Cc:
> Subject: Hebrew (was RE: Unicode Transcriptions)
> On 02/15/2001 10:49:00 AM ROBERT HODGSON wrote:
> >I would very much appreciate being in touch with other colleagues who have
> >had experience in displaying Hebrew characters with Unicode. Of interest
> to
> >us would be experiences in
> > 1) browser selection
> > 2) operating systems selection
> The key question has to do with whether or not you need the accents
> (cantillation marks). The key issue in terms of software (and fonts) in
> support for complex script rendering.
> Unpointed Hebrew can easily be supported on several OSes either using an
> industry-standard codepage (e.g. Windows cp1255) as the encoding, or using
> Unicode. Of course, the application also needs to support the encoding,
> though for browsers I think this is not too much of a problem these days.
> When you add vowel points, then you need to deal with proper positioning of
> diacritics. A Hebrew-localised version of an OS (e.g. Hebrew Windows 9x)
> will handle this, as can an OS that has the appropriate Hebrew-enablement
> support. I believe Win9x/Me/2K can all do this provided Uniscribe is
> installed (it will be, for example, if you install IE5.x and enable Hebrew
> in the setup options); you will also need an appropriate font (also
> installable with IE5.x). There is an important exception to this: complex
> scripts are *not* supportable on Far East versions of Win9x, period.
> I also believe the Mac OS with a Hebrew language pack will provide this.
> Mac OS 8.6 and later can support pointed Hebrew via the ATSUI application
> interfaces (in fact, support for Unicode-encoded Hebrew depends on that). I
> don't know the score in detail for Unix/Linux, Java and other platforms.
> This is talking about these OSes in general, but applications are also a
> factor. For example, Mac OS 8.6 and later can support Hebrew via ATSUI, but
> as yet, there are still only a limited number of apps that support ATSUI.
> IE 5.x can support pointed Hebrew on any current flavour of Windows. On
> Win2K, Uniscribe support is incorporated into the OS, so most apps should
> be able to support pointed Hebrew - provided they use a standard OS
> interface for drawing text.
> I don't know for certain whether IE supports pointed Hebrew on the Mac, or
> whether Netscape supports it on the Mac or on Win 9x/Me. I hope others will
> fill you in - I'd like to know.
> Now, when we add accents, things become more restricted. Currently shipping
> versions of Uniscribe do not support Hebrew accents. I'm sure this will
> likely change before long, but don't know for certain when. I don't know if
> the Mac Hebrew language pack supports accents; ATSUI would. In a nutshell,
> I don't know of any commercial business apps that support rendering of
> accents. If you combine an app that supports Unicode with an appropriate
> font, you can display them, but they won't be positioned correctly; each
> one will occur in a default position.
> > 3) size of Hebrew character set to chose
> I'm not sure what you are asking here.
> This doesn't answer everything, but I hope it helps.
> - Peter
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Peter Constable
> Non-Roman Script Initiative, SIL International
> 7500 W. Camp Wisdom Rd., Dallas, TX 75236, USA
> Tel: +1 972 708 7485
> E-mail: <>

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