Bidi reordering of soft hyphen

Asmus Freytag asmusf at
Tue Apr 1 18:39:13 CDT 2014

On 4/1/2014 4:12 PM, Jonathan Rosenne wrote:
> The use of soft hyphen is a cultural matter. In Hebrew, Classic and Israeli,
> soft hyphens are not used.
More to the point, how does software render a soft hyphen included in 
inserted LTR text, when the outer text is Hebrew? Would it always be 
ignored? Would it be rendered? How?

Mind you, I don't think that the bidi algorithm as such needs to care 
about these details, but the Unicode Standard does mumble about 
different conventions. Might be useful to add some examples to such 

> Best Regards,
> Jonathan Rosenne
> 054-4246522
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Unicode [mailto:unicode-bounces at] On Behalf Of Simon
> Montagu
> Sent: Wednesday, April 02, 2014 1:41 AM
> To: Roozbeh Pournader; Ken Whistler, (ken.whistler at
> Cc: Behdad Esfahbod; unicode at; James Clark
> Subject: Re: Bidi reordering of soft hyphen
> On 04/02/2014 12:00 AM, Roozbeh Pournader wrote:
>> Adding Behdad for his insight on the rendering stack.
>> But as for user requirements and expectations, the first option, with
>> the hyphen on the right side of "car" as "car-" is what a good
>> publisher would want to print in his magazine or book.  The second
>> option is harder to decipher for an RTL reader.
> I agree with Roozbeh here. Since the hyphen marks a break in the middle of
> the word, I think the most natural user expectation is that it should appear
> after the last character in the word, where "after" and "last"
> both refer to the reading direction of the word.
> I have seen examples of this in published Hebrew books, and this is also the
> way it's rendered in Chrome, Firefox and Opera (but in the case of Firefox,
> since I wrote the code for it I can testify that it isn't this way by
> design: as far as I remember I only took into account the direction of the
> text run containing the soft hyphen and didn't even think about the
> opposite-direction case).
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