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Re: [Groff] [patch] Typographic quotes in -mdoc %T

From: Tadziu Hoffmann
Subject: Re: [Groff] [patch] Typographic quotes in -mdoc %T
Date: Thu, 6 Nov 2014 19:21:21 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)

> > Should nroff render `` '' as typographical double quotes
> > instead of literal ASCII values?
> No, definitely not, IMO.  It should render them exactly as
> what the input says is intended, i.e. two grave accents and
> two apostrophes.  If a typographic representation is what is
> wanted ... well, that is precisely why we have more expressive
> input notations, such as \(oq, \(cq, \(lq, and \(rq, (for
> which macro packages may often define equivalent string
> representations).

I agree.  Also, it can't do this easily if it reads them as
separate input characters, unless we generalize the ligature
mechanism (like in TeX) to recognize sequences other than the
five "f"-combinations hardcoded into groff.

NB, in the good old days of X11 we used Adobe's ISOLatin1Encoding
in which those "grave accents" (0x60) *were* typographical left
quotes (and the apostrophes (0x27) typographical right quotes /
apostrophes) in both nroff and troff.  It's only since Unicode
screwed up the encoding that we have these aesthetic problems.

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