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Unicode® History Corner

This area of the Unicode web site pulls together various information about the history of the Unicode Consortium and the people and companies involved in it over the years.

The Unicode Consortium was incorporated in January, 1991 in the state of California, four years after the concept of a new character encoding, to be called "Unicode", was broached in discussions started by engineers from Xerox (Joe Becker) and Apple (Lee Collins and Mark Davis).

History of the Unicode Standard

More details of the very early history leading up to Unicode 1.0 are listed in the Summary Narrative and in the detailed timeline, Chronology of Unicode Version 1.0. A retrospective quoting various participants looking back on history is available at Early Years of Unicode.

See Release and Publication Dates for a comprehensive listing of the dates for all past releases of the Unicode Standard, as well as the details of publication dates for the books and annexes.

Consortium Membership History

The Membership History page shows all of the voting (full, institutional and supporting) members of the Unicode Consortium over the years.


The Board Members page tracks the history of participation on the Unicode Consortiums Board of Directors. Previous Officers of the Consortium contains photos and brief bios of former officers. The Photo Album has photos of various important contributors and milestones.

Virtual Museum

Visit the Virtual Museum to see graphical displays from Unicode history: book covers, the original Unicode logo, videos, and TV interviews from the early days of Unicode.