Re: unicode Digest V5 #149

From: John Hudson (
Date: Sun Jun 19 2005 - 16:07:27 CDT

  • Next message: Mete Kural: "Re: unicode Digest V5 #149"

    Mete Kural wrote:

    > I do not think it is consistent of you to marginalize Arabic pedagogical books since it is less than 1% of Arabic typesetting. Nor I believe it is consistent with the above mentioned intention of the Unicode standard to support "the needs of all types of users, whether in business or academia, using mainstream or minority scripts."

    I don't think Michael is marginalising Arabic pedagogical books at all, and certainly not
    in terms of Unicode encoding. The discussion is about colouration of text for such books,
    and as has been clearly stated such colouration has nothing to do with text encoding per
    se. So what you quote from the Unicode FAQ is irrelevant to the discussion.

    Michael's observation about books requiring *this kind of colour intervention* being less
    than 1% of Arabic typesetting -- quite a lot less than 1%, I would think -- makes the very
    simple point that such a small level of demand isn't likely to get much attention from the
    makers of fonts and software, especially if supporting it would mean a complete overhaul
    of their existing products. Unicode itself is committed to 'the needs of all types of
    users, whether in business or academia, using mainstream or minority scripts', but font
    and software developers prioritise things based on demand. I've spent many weeks building
    contextual mark positioning lookups for Arabic fonts, even though I know that the
    percentage of vocalised text is relatively small: I do as much as I can to refine the mark
    positioning in the time available and as the budget permits. I know how much investment
    Arabic font development takes -- and how much piracy there is in the market --, and I
    can't see anyone prioritising colouration of bits of ligatures unless it was as part of a
    specific commission, e.g. a font made precisely for the kind of books to which you refer.
    It is unrealistic to think that so small a demand will pay for the development of more
    than one or two fonts made for such purposes.

    John Hudson

    Tiro Typeworks
    Vancouver, BC
    Currently reading:
    Truth and tolerance, by Benedict XVI, Cardinal Ratzinger as was
    An autobiography from the Jesuit underground, by William Weston SJ
    War (revised edition), by Gwynne Dyer

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