Re: Dependent vowels

From: Kenneth Whistler (
Date: Fri Oct 30 1998 - 14:34:13 EST

Mark Leisher asked:
> Someone was asking me recently why they should use the Unicode Indic dependent
> vowels internally. I don't see any reason to use them because they make
> akshara construction and searching more complicated. They are only useful for
> rendering.
> I was wondering if anyone here actually uses them and why?

I would add to Kamal Mansour's elegant reply the additional note
that a good reason to use the Indic dependent vowels as encoded
in Unicode (and described in the Unicode discussions of Devanagari
and Tamil) is so that the text you produce is interchangeable and
interpretable by other Unicode implementations. Arbitrary departures
from the recommended text models for various scripts might make a
particular implementation easier in some respects, but it will result
in text which may not be interpreted correctly by other implementations
that follow the guidelines on the text model.


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