Re: glyph selection for Unicode in browsers

Date: Wed Sep 25 2002 - 17:29:34 EDT

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    On 09/25/2002 03:34:00 PM Tex Texin wrote:

    >Thanks James.
    >Which registry are you referring to for script and language tags?
    >Is this in the context of glyphs or do you just mean the IANA language
    >tag registry?

    The OpenType script and "language" tags are specific to OpenType. As I
    mentioned in my previous message, one of the problems yet to be solved is
    how to associate OT "language" tags with the kind of things used for
    metadata, e.g. RFC 3066 (and also determining whether resolving those
    associations is the responsibility of the app, of a higher-level layout
    engine, or of the OpenType layout engine), and it hasn't even been worked
    out yet (IMO) just what the OT "language" tags are.

    >Given the (un)workable approach, do you then intend to have variants of
    >code2000 for CJKT, so one can make the appropriate assignments? (ugh!)
    >Also, this approach means I have to ask each Unicode font vendor, "Which
    >language is your multilingual font designed for?"
    >so I know which CJKT assignment is appropriate for that font...

    Unfortunately, that's where we're stuck for the time being. I wish it were
    otherwise, since we're in the process of coming up with new Latin /
    Cyrillic fonts for our users throughout the world, and there are various
    Latin characters for which different glyphs are preferred in different
    language communities. And the variations for one character don't
    necessarily correlate with those for another, so you get lots of possible
    combinations needed -- which would make it a pain to come up with a bunch
    of language-specific fonts. For now, we're going to give them the ability
    to select alternate glyphs via Graphite features,* but they'll only be able
    to use that in Graphite-enabled apps -- it won't work in Word!

    *Since our software tools are intended for use by linguists working in
    hundreds of languages / writing systems for which there is no support in
    commercial software platforms, we have for a long time provided mechanisms
    to specify writing-system-specific behaviours, such as sorting or character
    properties determining basic things like word-boundary detection and line
    breaking. In our new tools that support Graphite, there's an ability for
    the linguist setting up a system for their writing system to specify what
    features should be active by default for their writing system. This gives
    us an interim mechanism to handle language-specific typography

    - 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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