Quick Start Customizing... Thai support    

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Using BareED as Thai (TIS-620) text editor

Let me credit Dr. Lyndon Hill in first place whom I do owe a lot regarding Thai support in BareED.
In addition, BareED utilizes code written by Dr. Hill in order to detect illegal Thai character sequences.

In the past, Dr. Hill already used BareED in order to edit Thai texts - and as you may imagine, it was a real mess because BareED, like every other ASCII/LATIN-1 text editor too, had no knowledge about vowels, tone markers and consonants. Normally, an Amiga text editor treats any encountered character as a spacing character - unfortunately, Thai compliant text editors have to distinguish between spacing characters and non-spacing-markers - as usual in Unicode, too.
A spacing character can only be attached to an empty cell, whilst it is only permitted to insert a non-spacing marker into an already used cell - thus combining (at least) one spacing character and a non-spacing marker - which will form a new character.

Dr. Hill solved this by creating Thai fonts using negative kerning - which made it at least possible to render these glyphs upon displaying an entire page. Unfortunately, any cursor movement or upon entering characters those glyphs were rendered incorrectly. Not to mention when you deleted characters... With one word, it was weird...

Some weeks ago Dr. Hill plugged enough courage in order to contact me and wrote down his experience with BareED and the Thai language.

After my first reaction: "That cannot be achieved with BareED - it's just a plain text editor", we both shared ideas how to install Thai language support into BareED with a reasonable effort.

One early attempt of me ended up in a one-way street so I threw over board all modifications regarding Thai support. Then I modified only those routines which caused glyphs to be rendered incorrectly, taking only into account Dr. Hill's special fonts. After more and more routines had been revised, we finally got a text editor that could display Thai glyphs correctly. At this point we realised that to make a really useful Thai editor required features to prevent the user from entering invalid sequences of letters.

Dr. Hill wrote then the Thai Input Checker which I could use as one-to-one copy in BareED and suddenly BareED started to look very promising for Thai support.

After some minor faults were eliminated we're now in the situation to tell the Thai speaking Amiga community that finally the Amiga has got one text editor which can be used by those who already searched in the past for a suitable text editor.

Here is a little guidance from me how to customise BareED in order to let it act as Thai compliant text editor.

First, download the required fonts and keymap from Dr. Hill's site and install them.

Now take a look at this link, it explains what has to be done before BareED can edit Thai texts.
Please note, because the site represented by the link above makes excessive use of graphics, by using a dial-up modem the page-load-time takes approximately twenty seconds.