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Resolve Zawgyi and Unicode issues in MediaWiki core
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Description

In T165553 @Ninjastrikers mentioned that using a local CSS change in the Burmese Wikipedia is required to make it possible for many Burmese language speakers read the site.

I didn't get into the details, but this sounds like something that could be better done in MediaWiki core and not just on the Burmese Wikipedia. The advantages will be:

  • All MediaWiki sites will enjoy this without having to make a local fix.
  • MediaWiki developers will have a reliable uniform way to test that features work well with the Burmese language.

However, I'll need comments from @Ninjastrikers about the right way to implement this fix. Judging by a recent blog post, he is an expert in the issue :)

Event Timeline

Amire80 created this task.Feb 19 2018, 1:46 PM
Restricted Application added a subscriber: Aklapper. · View Herald TranscriptFeb 19 2018, 1:46 PM

As I said in T165553, many of Burmese websites use Zawgyi, and we need to change default font in browser Zawgyi to read that websites correctly. We can't read or write on Burmese Wikipedia, while the browser default font is changed to Zawgyi. So, we need to add custom font setting in MediaWiki css to read/write on Burmese Wikipedia/Wiktionary and read/write other Burmese Zawgyi websites at the same time with changed browser's default font.

Thanks @Ninjastrikers.

Can you please point us to the particular code in my.wikipedia that does this?

Ninjastrikers added a comment.EditedJun 13 2018, 4:55 AM

Recently, some of Burmese users complaint about they can't read or write on mobile device which are being force imported with Zawgyi (removed original Unicode font). Changing font style in common.css is not worked in mobile if the user's mobile phone doesn't have any of unicode font that defined in css (as they removed original Unicode fonts and imported Zawgyi). I suggested them to use Webfonts by changing mobile view to desktop view on mobile browser. But that method is a little difficult for those who desn't familiar with Wikipedia interface. So, I'm trying to fix those issue with enabling of ULS/webfonts by default on both mobile and desktop views (T196219).

What are the common mobile phones in Burma? Aren't you using Android and iOS?

If it's Android, what are the common models, and the common versions of Android?

In Burma, Android is more common than iOS. Top brands are Huawei, Samsung and Xiaomi, but models are various. Android version 6 and 7 are common for those brands.

OK, and what do you mean by "mobile device which are being force imported with Zawgyi (removed original Unicode font)"? Are phones sold in Burma with Zawgyi and without Unicode fonts? Even now, in 2018?

Android mobile phones like Samsung, Huawei, LG, Nokia that are officially sold in Burma have both Burmese (Zawgyi) and Burmese (Unicode) in device language selection. But, if user selected English language in device, Burmese Unicode doesn't work. To use Burmese Unicode in those phones is setting the device language as Burmese (Unicode).

Latest Xiaomi phones come with Unicode, but distributors in Burma replace original Unicode font with Zawgyi.

On Huawei phone which has been selected with Burmese (Unicode) in device language setting, it can't read correctly in article page of Wikipedia App. (Please see below attachment, the first one is list of the articles (correctly shown with Unicode), the second one is article page (title is correct but the content are shown in Zawgyi, so it can't be read.)


Ninjastrikers added a comment.EditedAug 8 2018, 12:41 PM

ULS/WebFonts has been enable on mywiki as default (T196219), it is good for PC users. But as WebFonts doesn't work on mobile view, the problem still exist for those who have Zawgyi on their mobile phones. If ULS/WebFonts enable as default on mobile view (app view), it will be good for them.