Wrapping text in table cells and DIV tags

I’ve been doing research on how to wrap texts. First solution I found was giving the CSS property word-wrap the value break-word:

word-wrap: break-word

But this didn’t work in Firefox.

In some forum, some suggested the use of overflow-x:auto:

<div style=”width:80px; overflow-x:auto;”>

But it doesn’t look good, does it?

Then I came across this blog entry. The author used the following PHP code to add a zero-width character to every character that is not a number or letter:

$url = preg_replace('/([^a-zA-Z0-9])/', "$1​", $url);

It worked for me after tweaking the code a bit. I removed the tilde (^) sign:

$url = preg_replace('/([a-zA-Z0-9])/', "$1​", $url);

With this, the zero-width character is inserted after every letter and number, allowing a long text wrap in its container.


$longtext = "Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis";
$longtext = preg_replace('/([a-zA-Z0-9])/', "$1​", $longtext);

<div style="width:100px;background:#cccccc;">
<?php echo $longtext ?>

It’s all thanks to the guy who posted this blog entry. 🙂

Edit: I found out that the wrapping using PHP helps only for the display, but not when you need to copy the displayed text and paste it somewhere like notepad. The zero-width characters would appear in between every character displayed.

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A Filipino programmer and baker. When I have time to spare, I blog, play video games, watch series (usually anime), cook dishes, draw, or spend a little time with pets. When I have the rare luxury of time, I get to travel and record song covers too! Running small-time online dessert shops Cookies PH and Catzie's Cakery.

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