Re: Unicode, Cure-all or Kill-all?

From: Thomas Nielsen (100065.2167@CompuServe.COM)
Date: Tue Aug 13 1996 - 11:34:25 EDT

Martin Duerst wrote:
>Unicode distinguishes hyphen and minus (besides having a generic
>hyphen/minus), because in certain circumstances one might indeed
>want to distinguish them and show them differently, although these
>circumstances are rare and the distinction is definitely a burden on
>the general user.

Jonathan wrote:
>>I was under the impression that in regular handwriting or print hyphen and
>>look quite different. Only because of the severe limitations of 6 or 7 bit
>>computer codes were they "merged" into a novelty that looks like neither. The
>>same was done to the two English single quotes and the apostrophe.
>>With a 16 bit code the limitations and the necessity are gone.

The distingushing between the minus and the hyphen plus em-dash, en-dash glyphs
is very important for the publishing and typhographic world. Nobody in Europe
would for example accept a minus character as a hyphen, but rather use a en-dash
or em-dash (which is different for North-America and also varies within the same
Indeed Unicode solves this problem in an elegant way.

Thomas Nielsen, MGI Software Corp.

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