Other Valuable References
The tracking bug is bug 906270. You can also type "gaia-rtl" as a shortcut to access this bug. All RTL bugs filed must be set to block either this bug, or one of the child META bugs for app-specific RTL support.
See the 2.2 UX Specification.
Great "How To" guide written by Julien Wajsberg
How to test your app in English text that allows you to spot problems using Stas's Pseudolocales for Firefox OS testing tools
- Please note that tests must be conducted with the phone set to Arabic as well, even if you do not read or speak Arabic. Pseudolocales is an excellent start but is not exhaustive.
Developer Resources for Writing Bi Directional Enabled Code are on developer.mozilla.org
Product planning/tracking docs at https://wiki.mozilla.org/RTL
Things related to the Unicode Bidirectional Algorithm, which is implemented in Gecko. By leveraging the existing platforms which conform to the W3C standards we make sure to minimize the risk of running into problems in this category. Bugs that go into this category should block the tracking bug and have
[rtl-platform] in their whiteboard: bugzilla query.
Things related to the code responsible for showing the UI to the user. They are mostly due to a developer hardcoding an LTR layout in the source code, e.g. when specifying the position of an icon in relation to the text label. Ideally, developers would take advantage of the Bidi Algorithm to achieve correct positioning for all languages, but this is sadly not always the case and is source of bugs for us to fix. Bugs that go into this category are the most common ones; they should block the tracking bug and don't need any special whiteboard tags: bugzilla query.
Last but not least, we're seeing a need in more bidi education for our UX designs. This is particularly interesting in touch interfaces which rely on spatial metaphors and finger gestures, like swiping.
Bugs that go into this category should block the tracking bug and have
[rtl-design] in their whiteboard: bugzilla query.
The sections below are not exhaustive or accurate in all cases, for all apps, for 2.2. Please do not rely on this wiki, but be sure to reference the 2.2 specification for Arabic support.
- Progress Indicators (The list on this wiki page is NOT complete. Please see page 15 of the spec for complete behavior):
- In FTU the progress indicator slides towards the right edge of the screen,
- For 2.2, the back button is ALWAYS on the left and the next button is on the right,
- The history of navigation (Haida model) is represented as sheets on a LTR timeline, and does not change for 2.2.
- subpanels slide in from the right edge of the screen
- learn more, expand, start:
- in FTU, the image inviting user to start the tour is a hand with the index finger pointing right,
- indicator arrows on dropboxes are always on the right
- number progression:
- in the Radio FM app, the frequencies increase from left to right
- in the Calendar app, months are arranged from left to right
- in the Calendar app, the settings sidebar is always on the left
Most animations and gestures will not change for the 2.2 release.
- Swipe to dismiss notification does not change for 2.2 and works LTR.
- [x] and [<] to close should be consistently on one side; right now it depends on the app (as noted in the pattern)
- Scrollbar behavior is noted on page 16 of the 2.2 spec.
- Currently the swipe to unlock is always to the right, as noted on page 6 of the spec.
- Behavior for check boxes is described on pages 18 and 19 of the spec.
Currently each app is responsible for setting the lang and dir attributes on the html element. This happens only after the 'localized' event is emitted, which is usually after the firstPaint event. This results in a jarring experience for the RTL users, as the entire content jumps from left to right a few hundred milliseconds after the launch of the app.
- The refactor of l10n.js (bug 914414) will fix this by setting dir and lang early on during the launch.
Other mobile operating systems have recently improved their support for RTL languages.
Android behavior should not be taken into consideration as a reference for expected RTL behavior in Firefox OS. There are many things Android does not do correctly, as noted in our work with the Unicode Standards Committee for Bidi Language support. The information in this section does not pertain to the 2.2 Firefox OS release in any capacity, but is supplementary.
Starting with version 4.2 (25% penetration as of Jan 8, 2014; source), Android has native support for RTL layout: http://android-developers.blogspot.com/2013/03/native-rtl-support-in-android-42.html. Things to note:
- checkbox states: reversed (ON is on the left)
- scrollbars: on the left
- scrollable letter index in long lists: on the right
- ordering of app icons in the apps menu: reversed
- time and notification icons: reversed
- apps vs widgets: reversed
- back arrow (software) points to the right
- timelines: reversed
- calendar: next week is to the right; months are displayed vertically
- progress bars in the browser: not reversed
- sidebars, subpanels: reversed
- swipe to unlock: you can swipe in any direction, but the icon indicating unlocking is not reversed
Prior versions don't support RTL layout at all. The text is rendered RTL, but the layout remains LTR.
iOS behavior should not be taken into consideration as a reference for expected RTL behavior in Firefox OS. There are many things iOS does not do correctly, as noted in our work with the Unicode Standards Committee for Bidi Language support. The information in this section does not pertain to the 2.2 Firefox OS release in any capacity, but is supplementary.
Tested on iPad with iOS 7
- checkbox states: NOT reversed: off [o ], on [ o]
- scrollbars: NOT reversed
- ordering of workspaces on the homescreen: NOT reversed
- time and icons in the notification bar: NOT reversed
- back arrow: NOT reversed
- calendar: week view LTR, month view vertical
- progression: NOT reversed
- sidebars; subpanels: NOT reversed
- swipe to unlock: NOT reversed
- labels: text always aligned to the left
- in many places text is aligned to the left
- dialogs: 'confirm' button always on the right
- text inputs: reversed, exception: Safari
- timer: X minutes Y seconds, always in that order, only the words 'minutes' and 'seconds' are RTL
Windows Phone 8
Windows Phone 8 behavior should not be taken into consideration as a reference for expected RTL behavior in Firefox OS. There are many things Windows Phone 8 does not do correctly, as noted in our work with the Unicode Standards Committee for Bidi Language support. The information in this section does not pertain to the 2.2 Firefox OS release in any capacity, but is supplementary.
- changing the language requires restart
- checkbox states:reversed
- setting icons (e.g. wifi): not reversed
- scrollbars: on the left; IE is an exception (content scrollbar on the right)
- ordering of app icons in the apps menu: vertical
- time and icons on the notification bar: reversed
- back arrow: hardware, not reversed
- timelines: reversed
- month switching in the calendar: vertical
- progress bars: reversed
- sidebars; subpanels: reversed
- swipe to unlock: vertical