Re: [unicode] Re: Canadian aboriginal syllabics in vertical writing mode

From: Julian Bradfield <>
Date: Thu, 17 May 2012 18:35:22 +0100

On 2012-05-03, Michael Everson <> wrote:
> On 3 May 2012, at 17:35, Asmus Freytag wrote:
>> But it would not give an answer to the underlying question, on whether such upright rendering would be the default choice - whether in its own script context, or whether in the context of inserting material (quotes) in other writing systems that do use vertical layout and have a long tradition of doing so.
> We already know that. Rotated Syllabics text is confusing and illegible. This follows directly from the structure of the script.
>> Likewise, I suspect, that no matter how you arrange it, stacked syllabics will look odd enough that the natural way to render longer text that for some reasons have to go vertically, would be rotated.
> I "suspect" otherwise. I know that un-rotated vertical Syllabics text maintains the basic shapes of the Syllabics characters, and is therefore more legible than rotated vertical Syllabics text, which automatically changes the readings of many syllabics syllables.

It took me a little while, but I finally managed to put this to an
Inuktitut speaker (Leena Evic of the Pirurvik Centre in Iqaluit, Nunavut).

Her response was that the rotated sidebars on the newsletter cited
earlier are entirely readable (in fact, I had to explain how there
could possibly be a problem), and that the vertical layout advocated
by Michael is "not common, and in most cases not ideal."

It would thus appear that Michael is alone in finding rotated
syllabics hard to read.
He might have more luck with a language that doesn't use finals or
other raised letters, but off-hand I can't find one.

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Received on Thu May 17 2012 - 12:39:41 CDT

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