[tex-live] clash between babel (french), hyperref and \cite on keys with a colon character

Vincent Lefevre vincent at vinc17.net
Mon Sep 22 16:37:29 CEST 2014

On 2014-09-22 16:05:20 +0200, Zdenek Wagner wrote:
> 2014-09-22 15:44 GMT+02:00 Vincent Lefevre <vincent at vinc17.net>:
> > There's a clash between babel (french), hyperref and \cite on keys
> > with a colon character. This can be seen on:
> >
> This is not a TeX Live issue but babel issue.

That's confusing because in Debian, babel is part of TeX Live
(texlive-base source package).

> The problem is that double punctuation (colon, semicolon, question
> mark, exclamation mark) need different spacing in French than in
> other languages, therefore these characters are active. Once you
> load the french module, they remain active even if you switch to
> another language.

Well, what I can see is that switching the language solves the
problem (whether these characters remain active or not, I don't
know, but at least the problem is solved).

> I am afraid that it is not an easy tast to change it and it is
> considered rather a feature, not a bug.

I can hardly see why it is a feature.

> You will have the same problems with other characters in other
> languages.

One important point is that colon can be seen in various BibTeX
files, and is generated by some export tools. I wonder what you
mean by "other characters". If these characters are never used
in BibTeX keys, this isn't much a problem. If these characters
can be ASCII letters (a-z), then I wonder what is done for these
other languages.

Vincent Lefèvre <vincent at vinc17.net> - Web: <https://www.vinc17.net/>
100% accessible validated (X)HTML - Blog: <https://www.vinc17.net/blog/>
Work: CR INRIA - computer arithmetic / AriC project (LIP, ENS-Lyon)

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