Keyboards, most software and basic input forms found on the web are usually too simple to cope with standard French typography conventions. However, I'd like to suggest a simple improvement that (I think) cannot do any harm, and would help post formatting a bit, by avoiding hanging punctuation.
Spaces appear before and after several punctuation signs in French. Conventions may vary with countries, but very often when there is such a space it should not be just a simple space but an unbreakable space¹.
Compare what your mobile phone may display:
La mise en forme de ce texte n'est pas «
convenable », il devient difficile de le lire
! ne pensez-vous pas ?
with what you would obtain using no-break spaces appropriately:
La mise en forme de ce texte est plus
« habituelle », et il est plus facile de le
lire ! N'est-ce pas ?
I usually don't like automatic rewriting, but I think we could safely enforce a few very simple characters rewriting patterns on this site, turning normal spaces into unbreakable spaces where needed. At least in the following cases:
. to denote any non-space character, and
_ is a placeholder for the no-break space.)
It may work just like the quote rewriting
.” that is performed on titles.
And code blocks should better be excluded from such a rewrite (hardly any code block can be found on the site currently, but anyway…).
Like others, I'm pretty tired of fixing the dangling symbols in titles, especially because I know that it would take roughly 15 minutes of work to deal with this once and for all, for everyone. When I fix titles with my phone, I don't even bother, and quite often someone has to come after me.
So I kindly ask the SE team to implement such a change, or to let us implement it.
1. Some should in fact be turned into narrow no-break spaces (U+202F), but I'm giving up with these since some broken browsers still fail to render them properly.