From: John Hudson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Sat Apr 17 2004 - 22:51:06 EDT
Michael Everson wrote:
>> This would make the mid-dot too high. The top dot of the colon usually
>> sits toward the top of the x-height; the *mid*-dot should sit lower,
>> optically midway up the x-height (which means slightly higher than the
>> actual halfway mark). The top dot of a colon is typically closer to
>> the height of the Greek ano teleia, which aligns with the x-height
>> (and which should align with the cap height in all-cap settings, and
>> with the small-cap height in smallcap settings).
> John, I just don't believe you. I don't believe that in all the history
> of Greek and Catalan typography this careful hairsplitting has *always*
> taken place; certainly in scientific transcription the HALF TRIANGULAR
> COLON is just the top dot in the TRIANGULAR COLON, and in Americanist
> transcription where the dot-colons are used instead of triangles I would
> say the same applies.
I never contested that the dots of a colon correspond to the triangles of the linguistic
long vowel marker. They clearly do. What I contested was that the typographic mid-point
(U+00B7) corresponded to the top dot of a colon. It clearly does not. It is called a
mid-point because it sits midway up the x-height. It is used in this position for a
variety of stylistic purposes, e.g. in place of hyphens in phone numbers in stationery,
which is why most type designers put it at this height. I can assure you that the vast
majority of type designers don't even know that Catalan uses a dot, let alone that it
might use this dot.
The obvious solution to present usage is language system typographic tagging, in which a
distinction can be made in the size, height and spacing of the dot for Catalan and
'Careful hairsplitting' always takes place when people care about typography.
-- Tiro Typeworks www.tiro.com Vancouver, BC email@example.com I often play against man, God says, but it is he who wants to lose, the idiot, and it is I who want him to win. And I succeed sometimes In making him win. - Charles Peguy
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