bugGNU troff - Bugs: bug #55070, [wishlist] Next-generation...


bug #55070: [wishlist] Next-generation hyphenation control

Submitted by:  G. Branden Robinson <gbranden>
Submitted on:  Wed 21 Nov 2018 08:00:51 PM UTC  
Category:  Core Severity:  3 - Normal
Item Group:  New feature Status:  None
Privacy:  Public Assigned to:  None
Open/Closed:  Open Planned Release:  None

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Wed 21 Nov 2018 08:00:51 PM UTC, original submission:  

See comments on <https://savannah.gnu.org/bugs/index.php?55066> for background.  Someone may be willing to add comments linking to past mailing list discussions as well.

In summary:

Three orthogonal ideas are intermixed in the semantics of the roff .hy request.  Quoting CSTR #54:

"Automatic hyphenation is turned on for N ≥ 1, or off for N = 0. If N = 2, last lines (ones that will cause a trap) are not hyphenated. For N = 4 and 8, the last and first two characters respectively of a word are not split off. These values are additive; i.e., N = 14 will invoke all three restrictions."

However this design does not scale to languages which permit hyphenation after the first or before the last letter of a word.

There should therefore be 3 separate controls:

  • minimum left-length before hyphenation occurs;
  • minimum right-length before hyphenation occurs;
  • whether hyphenation of the last line of a page or column is permitted.

And in fact, the last item could also be split in two; column-hyphenated orphans could be permitted when page ones are not (or, very perversely, vice versa).

The orthogonality of these concepts is not theoretically perfect, as in the case where left-minimum + right-minimum > word-length, there is some ambiguity, but this is only in theory.  In practice the result is that such a word is not hyphenated.

G. Branden Robinson <gbranden>
Project Member


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    Follows 1 latest change.

    Date Changed by Updated Field Previous Value => Replaced by
    2018-11-26 bgarrigues Severity1 - Wish => 3 - Normal

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