3.893 multilingual WordPerfect 5.1 (55)

Willard McCarty (MCCARTY@vm.epas.utoronto.ca)
Tue, 2 Jan 90 20:29:15 EST

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 3, No. 893. Tuesday, 2 Jan 1990.

Date: Tue, 2 Jan 90 11:50 EDT
From: The Man with the Plan <KEHANDLEY@AMHERST>
Subject: WordPerfect 5.1 and non-English languages

I have used WordPerfect 5.1 for over a month, and here is the dope on
non-English characters: WordPerfect will now print every character in
its character sets on every graphics printer it supports, that is,
almost every non-daisywheel printer. Most of these look fantastic on a
PostScript printer, but a few look really cheesy, notably the IJ and ij
diagraphs, j circumflex, and the upper- and lower-case Engs. The
character sets include many math/ science characters, Hebrew characters
and vowels (but not in the same character grid), Greek characters with
diacritics (except that a few are not there, like rho with some
diacritical), "Full cyrillic character set for ancient and modern
applications," "Hiragana--Japanese Kana," and "Katakana--Japanese Kana."
If anyone has a question about a particular character or character set, I
would be happy to answer it or send a Postscript file of the output (or
any other format, if I can possibly get it to him intact).

The problem with WordPerfect 5.1 involves displaying the characters as
the document is edited. Most of these will not display on the screen.
If you have an EGA or VGA (maybe Herc+) you can choose to display Greek
characters, but only the unaccented ones. If you use diacriticals, the
whole character appears as a small rectangle. When we called
WordPerfect to find out about getting more characters to display, they
seemed to be working on a utility to allow this, so they wouldn't say
much about it.

Therefore, as shipped, WordPerfect is not suitable for non-Roman
character processing, unless you want Greek with no diacriticals. One
might find it useful if he only used the Greek (or whatever alphabet)
for a few words at a time. Using it beyond that is probably not
impossible with some work and more knowledge than I have of EGA, etc.
fonts, but it will involve much work.

WordPerfect 6.0 will be graphics-based, so all of these problems should
be resolved by that release, due in the second half of 1990, I believe.

Again, if anyone has any questions for a user of WordPerfect 5.1, I'm

Keith Handley
User Services Associate
Amherst College Academic Computer Center