Friday, November 05, 2010

How well does #MediaWiki support right to left languages ?

I read the following conversation on IRC:

[19:50]AryehGregor  Have we looked at this?
[19:53]Nikerabbitwhy should we? we already know bidi is broken
[20:16]AryehGregor. . .
[20:17]Nikerabbitit's not funny, it's sad

The reaction of Nikerabbit, an expert on language support is surprising me. Recognisable improvements came to MediaWiki with the work done for the Usability Initiative. As many of our bigger Wikipedias are using scripts that are right to left, it is crucial to implement this properly. Having a tool for the testing of bidirectional functionality, a tool that prevents regressions makes excellent sense.

I am left with two questions:
  • what is the state of BIDI support
  • does it make sense to make the BidiChecker part of the testing environment.
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