New language definition for URLs
URLs are not English, or French . . . they need their own language setting because the rules for breaking them at the end of the line are unique to URLs and do not follow rules for other languages.
Currently we have to use Break and Nobreak character styles and the discretionary line break character to force the URLs to break before the punctuation instead of after it, and to not hyphenate strings of characters.
Adding these codes often messes up the ability to use various scripts or plugins to generate hyperlinks. If InDesign had a URL language, procedures that automatically add hyperlinks to URLs would work much better and save us a lot of time.
Paul Nylander commented
Agreed. The Chicago Manual of Style has clearly defined where a URL may break across lines, and it is a mess trying to get InDesign to honor those rules. Setting a "hyperlink" character style to "no language" can help avoid added hyphens, but the punctuation breaks (such as before a period, or before a single slash, or before a hyphen) are important to conveying URLs in printed material.
Lindsey Thomas Martin commented
Great idea. We probably need to write up a list of rules unique to HTMLs.