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Subject: RE: [dita] [dita-translation] TC/DITA/Translation Subcommittee Proposals

> -----Original Message-----
> From: JoAnn Hackos [mailto:joann.hackos@comtech-serv.com] 
> Sent: Tuesday, 2006 March 14 8:26
> To: dita@lists.oasis-open.org
> Subject: [dita] [dita-translation] TC/DITA/Translation 
> Subcommittee Proposals
> From: JoAnn Hackos, chair DITA/Translation Subcommittee 
> The DITA/Translation Subcommittee approved the following proposals to
> the DITA TC on March 13, 2006.
> DIR Attribute
> Proposal: That the DITA 1.1 specification include the DIR 
> attribute as a
> universal attribute with the values of LTR, RTL, LRO, and RLO. No
> default value is to be specified for the DITA DTD.
> Discussion: The DIR attribute is used by authors of languages such as
> Hebrew and Arabic to ensure that correct directionality on the output,
> especially when the standard directionality has to be modified to
> accommodate some special use of the language. The reason to include it
> is to ensure that tools for authoring and for transforms generate the
> correct directionality. There was discussion that the results of this
> would often be unpredictable and produce different effects 
> for different
> browers. The SC will now work on a statement of best practices for
> authors and tools vendors to develop a way to handle the dir attribute
> properly.

I agree that some more explanation will be necessary
before we can agree to put this in the DITA spec.  

In particular, while most people may know about LTR and 
RTL (since it is part of HTML), many may not know what 
the processing expectations are for LRO and RLO (unless 
they get into the details of bidi-override in either the 
CSS or XSL-FO specifications).  The subject of language 
direction and bidi-override is complex enough without 
forcing people to read the entire CSS or XSL-FO spec plus 
the Unicode spec just to be able to use the DITA dir attribute.


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