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Re: [Groff] hyphenation in words with explicit hyphen

From: Kees Zeelenberg
Subject: Re: [Groff] hyphenation in words with explicit hyphen
Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2001 23:57:00 +0100

I don't think this is useful. In fact, TeX's behavior in this respect has 
always given me
trouble. In Dutch it is very common to have words with explicit hyphens. 
Whereas in English
composite words are usually written as separate words, and in German often as 
one word, Dutch
has an intermediate position: the words are joined together by hyphens. For 
example, 'software
engineer' would have been written in Dutch as 'software-engineer', and, I 
believe, in German as
'softwareengineer'. For compositions not consisting of nouns, Dutch usually 
writes the words as
one. For example, 'samenstelling' (composition, German: Zusammenstellung) is 
written as one
word, because the first part (samen: together) is not a noun. When a 
composition is in common
use, it gradually becomes to be regarded as a single noun, and the hyphen is 
eliminated. Still,
there are many word compositions that are hyphenated. The separate words are 
often rather long,
and so hyphenation only at the explicit hyphen, leads to rather large white 
spaces in the

Kees Zeelenberg

----- Oorspronkelijk bericht -----
Van: "Werner LEMBERG" <address@hidden>
Aan: <address@hidden>
Verzonden: dinsdag 20 februari 2001 20:00
Onderwerp: [Groff] hyphenation in words with explicit hyphen

> Dear friends,
> shall I modify groff so that words which contain an explicit hyphen
> are hyphenated only there and not at different positions?
> Example:
>   current:
>     sentence-ending
>        ^    ^   ^
>       breakpoints
>    new:
>     sentence-ending
>             ^
>        breakpoint
> This behaviour is also implemented in TeX.
> Maybe it makes sense to be not that rigid, e.g. I could add registers
> `explicit-hyphen-distance-before' (ehdb) and
> `explicit-hyphen-distance-after' (ehda) to specify the number of
> characters before and after an explicit hyphen which are protected
> against implicit breakpoints.  At least for German this is useful;
> additionally, because groff can't optimize paragraphs, it possibly
> avoids ugly gaps in compound words.
> For example, setting ehdb = ehda = 3 would yield
>   sentence-ending
>      ^    ^
> Please comment.
>     Werner
> _______________________________________________
> Groff maillist  -  address@hidden

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