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I'm looking for a way to define or view and modify which characters are considered word boundaries by GNOME, similar to the "select-by-word" characters used in GNOME Terminal (related question) or cutchars in rxvt.

For example, when I am using gedit I can type abc123xyz and double-click, but only three characters will be selected, since the numbers are treated as a boundary by default. I see the same behavior in Tomboy, and at least a few other other GNOME/GTK+ applications I've tested. It's also present--and particularly annoying--inside the location bar (but not inside pages) of Google Chrome. Firefox seems OK, I believe since its UI is written in XUL, which is doing its own thing.

Please note that I am looking for a general solution, if one exists--I already know that there are plugins for gedit in particular, and maybe other per-application tweaks, but I want to know if this can be done in a way that affects most or all programs that inherit this behavior from the window manager (I presume?).

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Please also let me know if you can't reproduce this behavior. If that's the case, I suspect it may have something to do with locales.. I'm on Debian wheezy, using GNOME 3, en_US.UTF-8 locale (sometimes fr_FR.UTF-8). –  Noyo Sep 26 '13 at 9:35
More research hints that it's maybe not locale-related, but rather a well-established mystery related to the way (all?) Gtk+ applications seem to behave by default: mail.gnome.org/archives/gtk-list/2011-June/msg00060.html and mail.gnome.org/archives/gtk-i18n-list/2011-June/msg00003.html –  Noyo Sep 26 '13 at 13:31
Also: forums.opensuse.org/english/other-forums/… –  Noyo Sep 26 '13 at 13:37
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1 Answer

Apparently, this was fixed in version 1.34.1. Check the git log and the commits between 1.34.0 and 1.34.1 tags. Ubuntu 13.04 has version 1.32.5 of libpango1.0-0 same as sid. So, no joy for now for Debian-based distributions. If you need the library, you may compile it from sources.

This is an issue with the PangoLogAttr() function that seems that nobody has reported a bug complaining about it. The issue goes back to 2003 till the current time. Appart of the mails that you supply there are:

If my interpretation of the guidelines is correct, then it's expected that a word containing numbers, the word is limited by the numbers the same that by spaces and symbols except the '.

To report bugs against pango, just visit this link https://bugzilla.gnome.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=pango

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Good research, thanks! Strange, though, that even the example given in the guidelines doesn't follow the default of having . as a boundary.. In any case, it may be more of a feature request than a bug. Can you include a link to where one might file a bug? –  Noyo Oct 2 '13 at 14:50
Thanks again! After some quick searching, it does look like people want this and have indeed filed bugs/feature requests: bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=111503 and bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=530427 and bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=97545 at least. Maybe I'll just follow/comment on one of those for now. –  Noyo Oct 2 '13 at 16:39
Actually, according to that last one, a fix for my specific "abcc123" example has been committed: bug97545.bugzilla-attachments.gnome.org/… . No idea though when that version makes it to my Linux distro. –  Noyo Oct 2 '13 at 16:52
It is merged, but it's much more recent than the link in your comment. See here: git.gnome.org/browse/pango/commit/pango/… . Now sure if that version is included in any stable version of a Linux distro at the moment. –  Noyo Oct 2 '13 at 17:34
@Noyo any reason to no accept the answer? –  Braiam Oct 4 '13 at 12:45
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