Re: Arabic/Hebrew coding for the Mac

From: Ben Dougall (
Date: Sun Jul 06 2003 - 15:20:17 EDT

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    i think also maybe the system language setting has an overall influence
    on this. if you use right to left text while your system is set to a
    language that's left to right, i think that may have an overall
    influence, and behave differently to if you had your system language
    set to a right to left one.

    try searching for bidirectional and unicode here:

    On Sunday, July 6, 2003, at 03:33 pm, Theodore H. Smith wrote:

    > Hi people,
    > I'm having a real headache trying to code for Arabic/Hebrew text
    > editing for the Mac. I'm developing a generalised editfield, of course
    > I'd like it to edit Japanese too, but Japanese can run in the English
    > direction, so that makes it a lot simpler!
    > I really am in need of some kind of forum or group with programmers
    > specialising in Arabic or Hebrew development on the Mac. I am running
    > into problems that seem very hard to solve, especially with the lack
    > of information and coverage on this.
    > The problem may be conceptual, I am having a hard time visualising
    > ATSUI's (MacOS's unicode display/edit API) modelling sometimes. I'm
    > finding in fact visualising reverse direction text a headache.
    > Especially seeing as I haven't seen code for working with it like a
    > proper text editor should do, yet.
    > Things like how does the paragraph selection work? This I find really
    > very awkward... Heres an example (pretend these numbers and letters
    > are Arabic, \r means return, ignore the spaces):
    > In RAM: 12356789 \r abcdefg \r xyz
    > Screen: 987654321 \r gfedcba \r zyx
    > So if I select the onscreen from 2 to \r, which looks perfectly in
    > order, then I am actually selecting a discontinuous range! But that
    > doesn't seem right! There should be no need to, right? Is an arabic
    > UTF document really backwards? So the first character in an arabic UTF
    > document is actually the last onscreen?
    > What really is going on here? What should be going on? Is my example
    > wrong? I really can't do any coding on reverse direction text till I
    > work out how these paragraphs are meant to be working. Its all really
    > rather twisted to me.
    > I do appreciate the problems here, in fact I made a theoretical
    > exploration and found that if we ordered in visual order instead of
    > logical, we'd just get a different set of headaches, not really less.
    > Such is computing for real-world problems!
    > Reply directly to me if you can please? At
    > --
    > Theodore H. Smith - Macintosh Consultant / Contractor.
    > My website: <>

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