Bidi paragraph direction in terminal emulators (was: Proposal for BiDi in terminal emulators)

Richard Wordingham via Unicode unicode at
Sun Feb 3 19:19:21 CST 2019

On Sun, 03 Feb 2019 19:50:50 +0200
Eli Zaretskii via Unicode <unicode at> wrote:

> Do you see how this is carefully formatted to avoid overflowing an
> 80-column line of a typical terminal?  Now suppose this is translated
> into a RTL language, which causes the Copyright line to start with a
> strong R letter (because "Copyright" is translated).  You will see the
> first line flushed to the right margin, then the next line flushed to
> the left margin (because it's a separate paragraph, and starts with a
> strong L letter).  Then the line which says "The default action..."
> will again start at the right.  And so on and so forth -- the result
> is extremely ugly.

Depending on the environment.  If you look at it in Notepad, all lines
will be LTR or all lines will be RTL.  Would not a careful translator
either ensure that each non-blank line had a strong character and that
all first strong characters were (a) L, (b) R or (c) AL?

Text in LTR scripts tends not to be so careful.


More information about the Unicode mailing list