Re: Combining diacriticals and Cyrillic

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Thu Jul 10 2003 - 11:45:19 EDT

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    <vladimirg at need dot bg> wrote:

    > I composed a demo page:
    > and then made 10-20 shots of the results on Opera and IE on Linux,
    > Windows 98 and Windows XP:
    > You can see that this approach yields _quite_ incosistent and useless
    > results, depending on the font, application and operating system being
    > used.

    Many display engines and fonts are still deficient in their support for
    Unicode combining diacritical marks, especially with scripts other than
    Latin. But they are improving.

    Unicode really is the way to go. You can assure your colleagues that,
    if it seems like it is taking a long time for browsers to render Unicode
    Cyrillic letters with diacritics, it will take even longer for them to
    recognize a newly invented 8-bit code page and for other users to begin
    using it.

    > Is it possible somehow to improve this approach? I imagine eg., if the
    > font can provide prepared combined symbols whenever the application
    > asks for a combined cyrillic+diacritical, instead of leaving the
    > application to do the combination.

    Some applications and fonts already replace letter+diacritic
    combinations with precomposed glyphs.

    > Do you see other unicode based approach to the Bulgarian problem?

    You could try using the precomposed characters directly. (Look
    throughout the Cyrillic block beginning at U+0400; you'll find them.)
    These are canonically equivalent to the letter+diacritic combinations,
    and are actually preferred in some contexts (Normalization Form C).
    However, not all fonts contain glyphs for them, so you may be back at
    Square 1.

    > Please excuse me for wasting your time,

    No need to apologize. We want to see people get the best use out of

    -Doug Ewell
     Fullerton, California

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