Re: No Invisible Character - NBSP at the start of a word

From: Mark E. Shoulson (
Date: Sat Dec 04 2004 - 18:20:31 CST

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    John Hudson wrote:

    > Mark E. Shoulson wrote:
    >> Well, that's the difference under discussion. The "plain text" would
    >> seem to be either the qere or the ketiv (but not the combined
    >> "blended" form), since each of those is somewhat sensible.
    > Is there some place in the standard where it says text must be sensible?

    No, but I meant "sensible" in the sense of according with the usual
    orthographic rules of the language. Stacking 97 different diacritical
    accents on a single character, for example, would be an abuse of Latin
    orthography and would not thus be "sensible." I would say that pointing
    one text with the vowels of another, without regard for discrepencies in
    character-count, constitutes an abuse of the Hebrew orthography, and
    shouldn't be considered "normal" usage that must be supported.

    That said, I have nothing against using NBSP and various other tricks
    and winding up supporting this. Even the INVISIBLE LETTER might make
    sense in some settings (e.g. where you have something to be drawn in
    later but the diacritic is printed now, for some reason). Just that I
    don't considere qere/ketiv per se a very convincing argument in a
    plain-text domain.


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