stacked characters obscured in 'text' input tag, and line 1 of 'textarea' input tags

Assigned to



Layout: Form Controls
17 years ago
6 years ago


(Reporter: ben, Assigned: kinmoz)



Mac OS X

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)




(3 attachments)



17 years ago
Ascending stacked characters do not fit within the constraints of a text 
input box, and are not visible, or only semivisible within the input box.
This is a problem for stacked character languages, such as Tibetan 
(there are many, more popular character sets that use stacks)

Descending stacked characters similarly are not displayed well either.

This bug requires a stacking unicode font to see, -one is available from 
bug 107765, to which this bug is related. (Assigner may want to move the 
component over to internationalization).

There may be no solution for this. In my opinion it depends upon the 
whole concept of 'baseline' as a standard artefact of user interfaces. this 
is why I have marked its severity as 'enhancement'.

Comment 1

17 years ago

this is not a form submission issue. can you please find out the right target
form controls
Assignee: alexsavulov → rods
Component: Form Submission → HTML Form Controls
QA Contact: vladimire → madhur


17 years ago
Ever confirmed: true

Comment 3

17 years ago
Assignee: rods → kin

Comment 4

17 years ago
Cc ftang.


17 years ago
Target Milestone: --- → Future
Testcase is not reachable, and I'm not sure what this bug is about... jshin, do
you know?

Reporter, if you could attach a testcase to the bug itself, that would be great.

Comment 6

15 years ago
I guess as long as a font with the right metric is used, we're fine. Without a
font to support Tibetan, I really can't test this. I know a couple of Tibetan
experts and am gonna ask them where I can get Tibetan fonts.  (section 9.11 is about

P.S. Mac OS X may come with a Tibetan truetype font with 'mort' table. 'mort'
table is not recognized by truetype drivers on Windows and Xft/fontconfig. So, I
need an opentype Tibetan font. 
Keywords: intl

Comment 7

15 years ago
Created attachment 141307 [details]
Pictural example of input type=text problem with stacked characters

Tibetan cannot have a fixed vertical metric: Line heights necessarily change
according to character context.  There are extreme cases that illustrate this -
for instance the syllable hamkshamalavaraya ( 0F67 0FB9 0FA8 0FB3 0FBA 0FBC
0FBB ),  a vertical stack that will typically require a vertical metric that is
equivalent to three lines or more, depending on the typeface. (Tibetan is
predominantly written left to right, like English, but each syllable is
represented as a vertical stack; this entails that one can have many unicode
characters at what would normally be one character 'space' ).  
Because the current approach to the <input type="text" /&rt; is a static
(against text-entry) rendering, it does not dynamically accomodate stacked
unicode characters.
I can see just one possible solutions to this ethnocentric text input UI
We will need to be able to dynamically resize the input line when necessary;
that is, we will need to recalculate the line height during input (or rendering
when the input has a value attribute).

Comment 8

15 years ago
Thanks for the screenshot.

I knew about the vertical stacking, but I didn't know that it could go that far.  

How does Mac OS X handle Tibetan text rendering? For instance, how does TextEdit
handle multiple lines of Tibetan text? Does it use the fixed line height
throughout (a paragraph) or does it adjust the line height depending on the
maximum height in a given line (i.e. adjacent lines have different heights) ?  


Comment 9

15 years ago
Concerning Mac OS X rendering, it dynamically adjusts line-heights in
edit environments; this can sometimes look quite unpleasant, - use
random line heights on any text and it is hard to read!

The Tibetans use fixed line heights, but then they overlap
line-extending characters, in a manner  similar to (but NOT the same
as!)  drop-caps; most normally they adjust kerning on the affected lines
(most text is written or carved out of woodblock), or overprint if the
text remains legible.

Back to Mac OS X, single-line input areas and other single line UI
components are cropped, which blinds the user regarding Tibetan text,
and other indic, stack based character sets.

(Tibetan is generally acknowledged to be a 'worst case' for this
linguistic feature, as the stacks can be of any height whatsoever).

There are certain proposals by the Chinese government on Tibetan
encoding and rendering, such as  proposal N2621.  These are generally
considered to be unworkable, and though there is a lot of mess in  the
Unicode page 0F00, it suffices for Tibetan text.

The "hamkshamalavaraya" issue is exceptional, but common - the syllable
belongs to the Kalachakra Tantra cycle, which is very popular globally.
When Tibetans render it in text, they 'drop cap' it, or overflow it if
it is on the bottom line of a page.

Comment 10

15 years ago
Created attachment 141316 [details]
Example of safari rendering multiline tibetan - showing variable lines.

This shows Safari's current approach to multi-line editing, with a variable
Note that the text input is static, and (IMHO) fails in that the user is blind
to the text.
(This also affects URL inputs, but let's not go there now!)

Comment 11

15 years ago
Created attachment 141317 [details]
Simple UTF-8 html file that displays the stack problem on text inputs.
(In reply to comment #7)
> We will need to be able to dynamically resize the input line when necessary;

Which means reflowing not just the input, but the whole page on every keystroke.
 We used to do this, sorta (though the textbox height would never change).  On
current hardware, that makes it impossible to keep the display in sync with even
an average-speed typist.  That's why textboxes are reflow roots now.


Comment 13

15 years ago
(In reply to comment #12)
> Which means reflowing not just the input, but the whole page on every keystroke.
Well, you know that's not literally true.  We actually need to -test- for a possible change of line height 
on each keystroke.  As a general rule, we do not need to reflow at all:  solely when stacking characters 
are being keyed. Also, even with stacked syllables, we only need to check to see whether the current 
stack defines the the maximum line-height.  Moreover, we can use a (yet-to-be-designed) heuristic to 
keep line-height-based reflows minimal, by quantizing line-height accordingly.  

Comment 14

10 years ago
Hamkshamalavaraya ཧྐྴྨླྺྼྻྃ(0F67 0FB9 0FA8 0FB3 0FBA 0FBC 0FBB 0F83) is a pretty extreeme example - certainly not a combination which occurs in normal everyday Tibetan text. The situation can be improved by using a Tibetan font with approriatly scaled glyphs for rendering such extreeme combinations. 

This combination Hamkshamalavaraya (ཧྐྴྨླྺྼྻྃ) in fact only occurs in a handful of religious texts connected with the Kalacakra tantra - and many Tibetan script fonts will not properly render such rarely occuring sequences. 

The most complex (deep) stacks in normal Tibetan text occur in such words as སྒྲུབ་བརྒྱུད་ - i.e. three consonants and a subjoined vowel.
Real life examples of websites with lots of Tibetan script text can be found at:
<> and <> 

Provided you have a proper OpenType shaping engine and the proper fonts installed - the pages on these two sites seem to render pretty well in Firefox except for lines not breaking properly after character U+0F0B (bug: 394954). 

- chris 

QA Contact: madhur → layout.form-controls
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