Call for help on making RTL good in precise

Shahar Or mightyiampresence at
Sat Mar 3 15:33:29 UTC 2012

Dear Ubuntu Developers,

This is a call for help in making Ubuntu usable in RTL locales.

Preface: Complete mirroring of the GUI is essential for users of RTL
languages. GTK and Qt have this RTL alignment since ancient times,
allowing RTL users to enjoy localized interaces.

Unity, the main GUI in Ubuntu, doesn't support RTL alignment(1). This
is a broken experience for RTL users.

Unity and it's toolkit, Nux, is in process of merging patches which
provide RTL support. Not soon enough for Precise.

Unity 2D already has RTL support.

So, in order to work around the lack of RTL support in Unity and make
Ubuntu usable in RTL locales out of the box, users of RTL locales
should be made to fall back to Unity 2D in Precise. If you want to
work on this, please see the list of 6 points about this patch in the
Ubuntu RTL mailing list(2).

He who supplies this "fallback patch" in time for Precise (freeze
exception possible) will actually fix Ubuntu for RTL speakers in the
Arabic: 300 Million
Persian: 110 Million
Urdu: 60 Million
Pashto: 50 Million
Kurdish: 16 Million
Sindhi: 21 Million
Hebrew: 8 Million
Total is 565 Million people so this would be very good Karma! ;-)
(stats from Wikipedia)

Thanks and Blessings,


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