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You are here: Home / Conferences / Barcelona 2014 / Presentations programme

The Geminated El (L·L)

When Sat 20 Sep 1005
Where Museu del Disseny
Who Oriol Moret-Vinals

The geminated el (l·l, L·L) is exclusive of the Catalan language. It was conceived by Fabra and Alcover in their 1913 "Normes ortogràfiques" as a single character, formed by two els and a middle dot between them —the els being "as close to each other as in the ll symbol". This indication was generally complied with in metal type technology (moveable type, linotype, monotype) but was later altered in monospacing typewriters, where l·l would be broken into l· or ·l. Confusion around the geminated el increased in computer times: as its genuine features diluted, the diacritic between two letters raises conflicts that go far beyond aesthetic and typographic matters —from indexation and search malfunctioning to identification errors that may involve legal action. In 2004, a group of professionals, researchers and lecturers set up a project to restore and normalise the original geminated el within the digital world, focusing on two complementary aspects: encoding and typographic construction. Our talk will present an overall view of the problems concerning l·l and outline ways of development to solve them.

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