Re: Colouring combining Marks (was: unicode Digest V5 #149)

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Mon Jun 20 2005 - 00:59:40 CDT

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    Richard Wordingham <richard dot wordingham at ntlworld dot com> wrote:

    > As an aside, I'm beginning to get confused by the 'order' terminology.
    > I use to assume that visual order was the(?) orderly order the eye
    > would follow when reading, but that does not seem to be so for RTL
    > scripts!
    > ...
    > I suspect 'logical order' really just means, 'the order we like'.

    Most of the time, when I see the term "visual order," the writer really
    means "left-to-right," which of course is absurd for Arabic and Hebrew
    and such. I consider it a holdover from older computer technologies
    that could only display things left-to-right, built by people for whom
    LTR was the "normal" reading direction.

    I'd prefer to see "visual order" used to mean the direction generally
    appropriate for the script -- LTR for Latin, RTL for Hebrew -- but
    without reordering or other details that break the normal
    directionality. "Logical order" would be similar, but with these
    details added. I'm sure an expert in Bengali or Tamil or Khmer could
    come up with suitable examples.

    Doug Ewell
    Fullerton, California

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