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Re: [emacs-bidi] Re: RTL support

From: Omer Zak
Subject: Re: [emacs-bidi] Re: RTL support
Date: Fri, 25 Nov 2005 23:55:46 +0200

On Fri, 2005-11-25 at 11:24 -0600, Gregg Reynolds wrote:

> > A large part (maybe still a majority) of the people that write Arabic
> > and Hebrew on computers write in more than just one language.  This is
> > even if you discount numbers and trademarks.
> Yes, I've heard this claimed many times, but I've never seen any
> evidence to back it up.  My personal experience is that it is simply not
> true.  In the Arab world, at least, *most* people do *not* operate in
> multiple languages (just like in the US), and from what I've personally
> seen they get along fine using Arabic only on a computer, just as most
> Americans get along fine using English only.  Even scholarly articles
> written in English about Arabic generally use transliteration.  Things
> are no different in the Arab world.  When newspapers need to write "CNN"
> or "FBI", they transliterate it.  Then need for full mixed directional
> support is quite specialized, probably everywhere in the world.
> Add to that the fact that multilanguage computing w/out bidi support is
> quite feasible.  I do it all the time using Vim and even Emacs.

Hello Gregg,
With all respect, your claims are so wrong I do not know where to start.
I live in Israel and I use computers for Hebrew wordprocessing, in
addition to other purposes and other kinds of text processing.

I do not know how it is in Arabic speaking countries, but in Israel,
full BiDi is mandatory in text editors and wordprocessors, which aim at
handling Hebrew.

Even in Hebrew monolingual text, numbers are written in LTR order.  So
you already need a BiDi algorithm.  In addition to this, Latin letters
are frequently used in Hebrew text, especially in articles about
technical topics.

I consider any wordprocessor or editor without full BiDi support to be
broken and useless for editing Hebrew texts.

I use Emacs to edit Web pages for my Web site (http://www.zak.co.il/),
but when a Web page has also Hebrew text, I use gedit instead, because
it has full BiDi support.
                                              --- Omer
Delay is the deadliest form of denial.    C. Northcote Parkinson
My own blog is at http://www.livejournal.com/users/tddpirate/

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