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3 Problems You Can Solve by Applying No Language to Text

Every once in a while you might have some special text in your documents that you want to treat differently from the rest. Maybe it’s something that you never want to hyphenate, like a brand name or a URL. Or a passage with lots of words you don’t want to be flagged in a spell check. Or maybe you’re writing something with computer code where inDesign’s smart quotes feature will insert the wrong characters. In all these cases you can apply No Language to the text to solve the problem.

code text problems

code text problems fixed with no language


Note that in the case of URLs, if InDesign is not breaking them the way you’d like, you can address the problem with a GREP style. See Caleb Clauset’s InDesign Magazine article URLs Breaking Badly for the details.

Mike Rankin

Mike Rankin

Editor in Chief of, InDesign Magazine, and Author of LinkedIn Learning courses on InDesign, Illustrator, GIMP, Inkscape, and Adobe Dimension.
Mike Rankin

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5 Comments on “3 Problems You Can Solve by Applying No Language to Text

  1. I’m sure Mike would agree that the smartest way to do this is to create a No Language character style or perhaps even separate ones for your common uses:

    No Hyphen

    No Spell Check

    Web Address

    The more precise the meaning you apply to text via styles, the more flexibility you’ll have. If all web addresses have their own character style, for instance, and you decide that for readability sake they need to be in a monospace font, that change can be made in mere seconds.

  2. 2 problems you get by applying »No Language« to text:

    You loose metric kerning. So do apply »No Language« with a character style and don’t forget to set kerning to »Optical Kerning«.

    »No Language« ignores all OpenType features that you may use in your text style and displays the font only with its standard features. So if you’re using a different feature set for all digits, it is lost. Sadly there is no workaround to this.

    To illustrate this, you can visit this page:

    • Tobias: HUH?! What version of InDesign are you using? I am using the US version of InDesign CC and what you describe does NOT happen to me.

      Setting text or numbers to No Language does not affect metrics kerning or opentype features. Perhaps it is your version or your fonts?

      • David, you’re right! It’s the font. I have one project, with heavy use of URLs and there it is ScalaPro which shows this weird behaviour. If I change to Minion or others, everything is fine.
        Thanks for pointing this out!

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