Re: [long] Use of Unicode in AbiWord

From: Rick McGowan (
Date: Fri Mar 19 1999 - 16:06:09 EST

So, along with much relevant and interesting information, Markus Scherer wrote...

> now, there are between 60000 and
> 80000 characters for chinese alone.

Oh sigh, sigh...

Ninety percent of those things can't be read or pronounced by any living
person, and not even the authortative dictionaries know what they are. They
are just SHAPES that are cataloged for reasons of historical reverence. This
huge figure is not very realistic. Sometimes I think it's a tactic used to
make Chinese seem large and scary...!

One of every 500 million people, give or take a million, is likely to ever
run into even ONE Chinese character that is not already among the
approximately 25,000 of them encoded in Unicode today. Most learned people
do not know even 6,000 characters.

You could enumerate Chinese characters forever and never reach the end --
I'll grand that. However, you could also *READ* Chinese forever and never
run into any of the supposed 50,000 or 80,000 or whatever thousand there are.
 And even if you did run into one, chance are you could look it up only to
find that no dictionary exists which could tell you what it means.


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