[XeTeX] Whitespace in input

Chris Travers chris.travers at gmail.com
Tue Nov 15 14:22:14 CET 2011

2011/11/15 Zdenek Wagner <zdenek.wagner at gmail.com>:
> 2011/11/15 Mike Maxwell <maxwell at umiacs.umd.edu>:
>> On 11/15/2011 5:39 AM, Chris Travers wrote:
>>> My recommendation is:
>>> 1)  Default to handling all white space as it exists now.
>>> 2)  Provide some sort of switch, whether to the execution of XeTeX or
>>> to the document itself, to turn on handling of special unicode
>>> characters.
>>> 3)  If that switch is enabled, then treat the whitespaces according to
>>> unicode meanings.  If not, treat them as standard whitespace.
>> I think you asked me earlier whether that would satisfy me, and I failed to
>> answer. Yes, it would.
> But such a solution is not clean, you cannot plug in such logic to the
> TeX mouth when the input is being read nor to the output stage when
> TECkit maps are in effect. I wrote the reasons earlier. The only
> reasonable solution seems to be the one suggested by Phil Taylor, to
> extend \catcode up to 255 and assign special categories to other types
> of characters. Thus we could say that normal space id 10, nonbreakable
> space is 16, thin space is 17 etc. XeTeX will then be able to treat
> them properly.
But we are talking two different things here.  The first is user
interface, and the second is mechanism.

What I am saying is special handling of this sort should be required
to be enabled somehow by the user.  I don't really care how.  It could
be by a commandline switch to xelatex.  It could be by a call in the
document if that's possible.  It should be optional, and disabled by
default, given that the characters involved are not intended to be
displayed with glyphs.

Best Wishes,
Chris Travers

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