[Printing-summit] UI Question - choosing from among 7, 000 la nguage tags

Michael Sweet mike at easysw.com
Wed Oct 4 10:48:50 PDT 2006

McDonald, Ira wrote:
 > ...
> Since most documents will NOT have a new 'script'
> subtag in their language tag, the end user (and
> print system) are left on their own to deduce the
> probable script (and therefore necessary fonts)
> from the language tag.

OK, but what has that to do with a UI?  The print system (or
filter/applications converting the document into a printable form)
will have its own tables/database/whatever to handle this for the
user, so there will be no interaction required, short of possibly
prompting the user to insert font disc so-and-so so that the
required fonts can be installed.

Making the user deduce the correct mapping of language to font(s)
is *NOT* the way to do it!  Type 1, TrueType, and OpenType fonts
are self-describing, and it is completely possible (and already
done!) to scan the installed fonts and keep a cache that provides
a map of available glyphs per typeface.  The display/print code can
(and does!) automatically create sets of fonts to satisfy a display
or print request.

Your original post concerned selection of a preferred language
in "web browsers and other applications", which as I've already said
is a self-limiting scenario that is already handled.  Developers that
choose to adopt this new standard (and my gut says they won't except
for some very specialize applications) will probably just extend
their existing UI to handle the subset they support.

Michael Sweet, Easy Software Products           mike at easysw dot com
Internet Printing and Document Software          http://www.easysw.com

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