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Re: Non-breaking hyphen [NH]

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  • Alec Burgess
    ... would not want ... the same data ... inapplicable. ... Nielsen-Stokeby xxxx . ... processing ... hyphen as a companion ... Not speaking about
    Message 1 of 8 , Aug 13, 2002
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      Bruce:

      > Suppose you were referring to someone named Nielsen-Stokeby. You
      would not want
      > the name split at the hyphen. But there might be other places within
      the same data
      > element, where a line break should be allowed. That renders nowrap
      inapplicable.
      >
      > I suppose this could be solved by entering xxxx
      <.nobr>Nielsen-Stokeby</nobr> xxxx .
      > (The period in <.nobr> is there only to prevent some mail systems from
      processing
      > it as a HTML-Tag. It should be "thought-away" !)
      >
      > But it seems peculiar indeed, that there should be no non-breaking
      hyphen as a companion
      > to the non-breaking space.

      Not speaking about HTML here, but just about how books and newspapers
      are "normally" printed - aren't there really two kinds of hyphens, ones
      that are always there even if the word/phrase does NOT require breaking
      (your example: Nielsen-Stokeby) and hyphens that MAY be inserted as part
      of the right justification process (eg. syl·la·ble)

      My point: either of these can be legitimately broken, so why would a
      non-breaking hyphen be "necessary"?

      Regards ... Alec
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Bruce Somers" <bruce.somers@...>
      To: <ntb-html@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: 13 August, 2002 16:57
      Subject: Non-breaking hyphen [NH]
    • Fay
      Perhaps it s personal taste. I don t like words broken to the next line, either when I m reading or when I m writing. I especially don t like names, like E A
      Message 2 of 8 , Aug 13, 2002
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        Perhaps it's personal taste. I don't like words broken to the next line,
        either when I'm reading or when I'm writing. I especially don't like names,
        like "E A Poe", to break, and I'd feel the same way about "Digby-Smythe",
        for instance. I know that justification looks better when breaks are
        allowed.
      • Ron Woodall
        ... There are actually three forms of hyphens, all of which came about as a result of the old hand-set typesetting industry. There is the mandatory hyphen (aka
        Message 3 of 8 , Aug 14, 2002
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          At 10:57 PM 8/13/02 +0200, you wrote:

          >Not really. A "non-breaking hyphen" ...
          >... companion to the non-breaking space.

          There are actually three forms of hyphens, all of which came about
          as a result of the old hand-set typesetting industry.

          There is the mandatory hyphen (aka hard hyphen) that remains no
          matter what and it sticks like glue to both the leading and trailing words.
          This addresses the situation "Digby-Smythe" where the typesetter would back
          up as much as several lines to adjust for this combination. Where he wasn't
          able to make the adjustments, the editor would have to edit the text
          slightly to accommodate the adjustment. This structure is used for proper
          nouns. A possible solution is the &#.8722; that Lotta suggested in a
          separate post. _If_ your audience is all in the US/Canada, has access to
          MSIE 5+ or Mozilla 5/Netscape 6, the solution is viable. However, older
          browsers display a "?" or the dreaded square in place of the unrecognized
          character. Do we have a partial victory?

          There was not just one size of hyphen, there were several, from
          the width of a standard hyphen to just slightly smaller than an en-dash
          (nutt.) When a line length wasn't quite right and the word spaces were
          adjusted, the hyphen could be adjusted as well. When both of these elements
          were expanded to their logical limit, only then did inter-letter spacing
          get adjusted. It must be noted that an em-dash or en-dash is actually a
          thinner line than a hyphen. It derives its impact from its length not from
          its weight. A hyphen derives its impact from weight and less so from
          length. (This statement is totally dependant on the font, weight and size.)

          The second hyphen is the one that is inserted by the author but is
          not a proper name i.e. sub-ordinate. I call this a "soft hyphen." In this
          instance, the hyphen is required (according to the author) but breaking at
          the end of the line is quite acceptable. When the window is resized and the
          line rewrapped, the hyphen remains even if the word isn't at the end of the
          line. This is created with the normal hyphenation

          The third hyphen is the one that is inserted but normally
          invisible. I call this a temporary hyphen. This is a product of our new
          hyphenation dictionaries. The hyphens are inserted according to rules: i.e.
          no two adjacent lines will end with hyphens; or only one hyphen is allowed
          per paragraph, etc. When the browser reaches the end of the line it checkes
          the rules to see if it is allowed to insert a hyphen. If it can, it then
          looks up the word in the hyphenation dictionary: if not, it adjusts what it
          can.

          This hyphenation dictionary is the real reason that hyphenation is
          not included in browsers. Consider that I use the Concise Oxford
          Dictionary. This publication is about 1666 pages of words with their
          hyphenation included. However, the real Oxford Dictionary is many times
          larger. Now, what about those words that Webster acknowledges as in common
          usage in the U.S. but Oxford does not (lacking common usage in the
          UK/Canada) and vice versa (i.e. whilst.) Multiply this confusion with every
          language on earth and add further confusion; to wit,

          The Inuktitut language of the Inuit in the North Polar regions have a
          common spoken language with many dialects. However, the Religious Leaders
          of the day decided that the language must be written down (ostensibly to
          distribute the Bible) so the Roman Catholics created a written language in
          one form and other Churches did the same but differently. Someone created a
          written form of the language that used a new written form with new
          characters. So now we have one language with many dialects written in
          various forms and they all need to be accommodated. How is the browser
          vendor to meet all of these challenges, especially when he doesn't even
          know what the original language was? One of the First Nations in the west
          of Canada has a language that can only be spoken and understood by someone
          born and raised in it. Our ears are just not trained to hear some of the
          consonants in their language. How does the browser manufacturer adjust his
          product to accommodate this language?

          Fay added a comment about justification. It must be realized that
          traditional (hand set type) typesetting adjusted line lengths even for rag
          right margins. There was a band of space down the right margin.
          Justification meant that this band was a thin line at the right margin.
          However, an Editor could order a wider band and allow for a rag right
          margin but with the same effect as justified text. i.e. the lines appear
          rag right to make the publication less formal but it would read just as
          easily as justified text without the sternness. The font, font size, line
          length and types of indents used all dictated the width of this "right
          margin band."

          I recognize that not everyone is interested in such a close
          examination of hyphens so I propose this to bring an historical perspective
          to the issue and perhaps point out some of the constraints of the 'web. It
          is truly a universal tool but we haven't figured out how to accommodate
          everyone yet.

          Ron Woodall

          ---------------------------------------
          Ron Woodall
          nor@...

          The Compendium of HTML Elements
          "your essential web publishing resource"

          - available at/disponible à:
          http://au.htmlcompendium.org/index.htm (Australia)
          http://www.htmlcompendium.org/index.htm (Europe and North America)
        • Bruce Somers
          Hi Alec, I wrote -- But it seems peculiar indeed, that there should be no non-breaking -- hyphen as a companion to the non-breaking space. You replied -- Not
          Message 4 of 8 , Aug 14, 2002
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            Hi Alec,

            I wrote
            -- But it seems peculiar indeed, that there should be no non-breaking
            -- hyphen as a companion to the non-breaking space.

            You replied
            -- Not speaking about HTML here, but just about how books and
            -- newspapers are "normally" printed - aren't there really two kinds
            -- of hyphens, ones that are always there even if the word/phrase
            -- does NOT require breaking (your example: Nielsen-Stokeby) and
            -- hyphens that MAY be inserted as part of the right justification
            -- process (eg. syl·la·ble)

            -- My point: either of these [Nielsen-Stokeby and syl·la·ble] can be
            -- legitimately broken, so why would a non-breaking hyphen be
            -- necessary"?

            Certainly, there are more kinds of hyphen-like characters. You have
            introduced one that I don't recognize in syl·la·ble.

            For me, it is less a question as to when lines are REQUIRED to be
            broken, than to when it is ALLOWED. I'm puzzled at the character
            strings which you feel can be split legitimately. I would not split
            proper names, such as "Nielsen-Stokeby" nor, as Fay mentioned, "E A
            Poe", and your example "syl·la·ble" could scarcely be allowed to be
            split.

            In the usual displays or print-outs, lines are split when a certain
            maximum (column) length is about to be exceeded. The display and
            print routines scan back to the most recent space or hyphen and split
            the line there. In cases of proper names, technical terms, and other
            entities that should not be separated, one resorts to the so-called
            non-breaking space and non-breaking hyphen, that do not allow the line
            (character string) to be split.

            There are of course, many more problems! What to do with what is
            called a Gedankenstrich in German - used to introduce an aside of
            sorts - which is certainly not an acceptable point at which to split a
            line. I suppose it COULD be rendered by the sequence

            word/non-breaking space/non-breaking hyphen/non-breaking space/word

            preventing a line split anywhere within this sequence, IF indeed, we
            had a non-breaking hyphen.

            The non-breaking hyphen does exist in the real-computer world, but
            seems to be lacking in the PC (Pseudo-Computer) world.

            Regards Bruce


            BTW - I have a problem with "the right justification process".

            I assume that you were thinking of right-justified text and not of the
            most suitable process for creating it (the right/correct justification
            process)? I'm being picky, I know - it's for dramatic effect! LOL
            Careful use of hyphens can greatly improve the ease of readability of
            a text and in certain cases even prevent misconceptions.





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          • Alec Burgess
            ... Ron ... thanks very much ... I think its fantastic when someone is able to share detailed knowledge about an area they are expert in. Gems like yours are
            Message 5 of 8 , Aug 14, 2002
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              Ron:

              > I recognize that not everyone is interested in
              > such a close examination of hyphens so I propose this to
              > bring an historical perspective to the issue and perhaps
              > point out some of the constraints of the 'web. It is
              > truly a universal tool but we haven't figured out how to
              > accommodate everyone yet.

              Ron ... thanks very much ... I think its fantastic when someone is able
              to share detailed knowledge about an area they are expert in. Gems like
              yours are what make frequenting forums so much fun. DON'T STOP ;--)

              Regards ... Alec

              ---- Original Message ----
              From: "Ron Woodall" <nor@...>
              To: <ntb-html@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: 14 August, 2002 10:31
              Subject: Re: Non-breaking hyphen [NH]
            • Ron Woodall
              Hi Bruce: ... The Chinese and some of the other oriental languages have a similar one called ruby that has recently been made a recommendation (if my memory
              Message 6 of 8 , Aug 15, 2002
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                Hi Bruce:

                At 06:47 PM 8/14/02 +0200, you wrote:
                >Hi Alec,
                >
                >I wrote
                >-- But it seems peculiar indeed, that there should be no non-breaking
                >-- hyphen as a companion to the non-breaking space.
                >
                >You replied
                >-- Not speaking about HTML here, but just about how books and
                >-- newspapers are "normally" printed - aren't there really two kinds
                >-- of hyphens, ones that are always there even if the word/phrase
                >-- does NOT require breaking (your example: Nielsen-Stokeby) and
                >-- hyphens that MAY be inserted as part of the right justification
                >-- process (eg. syl·la·ble)
                >
                >-- My point: either of these [Nielsen-Stokeby and syl·la·ble] can be
                >-- legitimately broken, so why would a non-breaking hyphen be
                >-- necessary"?
                >
                >Certainly, there are more kinds of hyphen-like characters. You have
                >introduced one that I don't recognize in syl·la·ble.
                >
                >For me, it is less a question as to when lines are REQUIRED to be
                >broken, than to when it is ALLOWED. I'm puzzled at the character
                >strings which you feel can be split legitimately. I would not split
                >proper names, such as "Nielsen-Stokeby" nor, as Fay mentioned, "E A
                >Poe", and your example "syl·la·ble" could scarcely be allowed to be
                >split.
                >
                >In the usual displays or print-outs, lines are split when a certain
                >maximum (column) length is about to be exceeded. The display and
                >print routines scan back to the most recent space or hyphen and split
                >the line there. In cases of proper names, technical terms, and other
                >entities that should not be separated, one resorts to the so-called
                >non-breaking space and non-breaking hyphen, that do not allow the line
                >(character string) to be split.
                >
                >There are of course, many more problems! What to do with what is
                >called a Gedankenstrich in German - used to introduce an aside of
                >sorts - which is certainly not an acceptable point at which to split a
                >line. I suppose it COULD be rendered by the sequence
                >
                >word/non-breaking space/non-breaking hyphen/non-breaking space/word
                >
                >preventing a line split anywhere within this sequence, IF indeed, we
                >had a non-breaking hyphen.

                The Chinese and some of the other oriental languages have a
                similar one called "ruby" that has recently been made a recommendation (if
                my memory serves me right.)

                >The non-breaking hyphen does exist in the real-computer world, but
                >seems to be lacking in the PC (Pseudo-Computer) world.

                However, it appears that & #8722; does the trick, at least with
                the later browsers.

                Ron Woodall

                ---------------------------------------
                Ron Woodall
                nor@...

                The Compendium of HTML Elements
                "your essential web publishing resource"

                - available at/disponible à:
                http://au.htmlcompendium.org/index.htm (Australia)
                http://www.htmlcompendium.org/index.htm (Europe and North America)
              • Ron Woodall
                Hi Alec: ... Thanks for the vote of confidence. BTW, you ll find that little tidbit in the site with revision 11. However, the question still remains: to what
                Message 7 of 8 , Aug 15, 2002
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                  Hi Alec:

                  At 05:08 PM 8/14/02 -0400, you wrote:

                  >Ron ... thanks very much ... I think its fantastic when someone is able
                  >to share detailed knowledge about an area they are expert in. Gems like
                  >yours are what make frequenting forums so much fun. DON'T STOP ;--)

                  Thanks for the vote of confidence. BTW, you'll find that little
                  tidbit in the site with revision 11.

                  However, the question still remains: to what extent is −
                  usable. Someone in a later post suggested that — and – acted the
                  same as &# 8722 but my experiments don't support that. Do we have comments
                  that might wrap up this discussion and possibly a conclusion? Has anyone
                  experimented with some of the unicode characters with a view to this issue?

                  I've got to get to work. Interesting as it is, I can't keep this
                  up all day or the site will never be updated. Sorry for not addressing all
                  of the comments.

                  Ron Woodall

                  ---------------------------------------
                  Ron Woodall
                  nor@...

                  The Compendium of HTML Elements
                  "your essential web publishing resource"

                  - available at/disponible à:
                  http://au.htmlcompendium.org/index.htm (Australia)
                  http://www.htmlcompendium.org/index.htm (Europe and North America)
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