RE: New property for reordrant dependent vowels reordering?

From: Kent Karlsson (
Date: Sun Sep 04 2005 - 16:30:54 CDT

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    Richard Wordingham wrote:

    >>> TTA and TTHA and no half-form for TTA, this sequence is two
    >>> orthographic
    >>> syllables - TTA + VIRAMA and TTHA + I.
    >> Then there are two orthographic syllables here, per definition.

    Oops, my bad. There is just one orthographic syllable, the virama
    ties the consonants together (regardless of whether they form a
    conjunct/ligature or not). (Sorry for not noticing before.)

    An orthographic syllable here is (simplified):

    <consonant, {combining marks, at least one of which is a virama}>*
       <consonant, {maybe combining marks, no virama}>

    Conjuncts are just ligatures of <consonant, virama, consonant> and
    are indeed mostly optional (though some are very common) and certainly
    font dependent (and conjuncts may in turn ligate with a following
    dependent vowel).

    > For Brahmi, Khmer and Dai Lanna, the conjuncts are generally not

    You mean that the consonants in the orthographic syllables do not
    generally form conjuncts/ligatures...

    > There are a few specific issues, but they go away if one is allowed to
    > a superscript for a subscript and vice versa. Automating their
    > placement would be more complicated - the ascender of a subscript
    would have
    > to be moved away from the superscript of the base consonant.

    I don't think anyone wants to complicate rendering (placement,
    "reaching" ligatures; as opposed to just reordering pre-vowels)
    for this, unless it can be shown to be quite often used, and is
    deemed to be 'plain text'.

    Peter Constable wrote:

    > Is *not* so obvious to a human. In fact, there are two writing
    > conventions that you will find in use in the event of a consonant
    > cluster where C1 has no half form and a conjunct ligature is not used.
    > One is to place I before the killed consonant, the other placing the I
    > after the killed consonant / before the live consonant.

    That is, as Eric Muller wrote, then two *orthographic* conventions.
    These must be *reliably* be distinguished in the underlying text.
    It must NOT be font dependent (for properly constructed fonts).

    > In Windows Vista, Uniscribe is being updated to support either
    > convention. The font implementation will determine which is used by
    > default. One can always force the I to go after the killed
    > consonant by
    > inserting ZWNJ; e.g., < TTA, VIRAMA, ZWNJ, TTHA, I >.

    I don't think ZWNJ (in that position) is the appropriate way to
    distinguish these two orthographic conventions, since that is
    used for another distinction. But a ZWJ just before the dependent
    vowel *may* be a possible way to distinguish these two orthographic
    conventions (font independently!); e.g.:

    < TTA, VIRAMA, ZWNJ, TTHA, I > -- I to the extreme left, with visible
    < TTA, VIRAMA, TTHA, I > -- I to the extreme left, using conjunct (if in
    < TTA, VIRAMA, ZWNJ, TTHA, ZWJ, I > -- I before TTHA, with visible
    < TTA, VIRAMA, TTHA, ZWJ, I > -- I before TTHA, with visible virama

       /kent k

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