RE: RE: [long] Use of Unicode in AbiWord

From: Chris Pratley (
Date: Tue Mar 23 1999 - 20:43:29 EST

Sure. Check out and related sites. For an
example of a site that needs these chars, check out the Mingpao newspaper:

I'm not sure if the list of chars is publicly available from the HK Gov't,
but it should be. They are also working on a new version that adds an
additional 1000 characters, most of which are already in Unicode, but a few
which are not. You can download the package - I believe it has a character
picker tool for the new characters. I have seen the list before, and the
cross-check results with Unihan (incl Ext A) are believable IMHO.

As for the Taiwan Gov't, I don't know if their info is on the web. I do know
that their database cannot be supported in Unicode yet (even with Ext A),
which is why there is an effort to add additional chars in Ext B and later.

Obviously the SuperCJK effort from the Chinese Government and other similar,
recent governmental efforts to get all known Chinese characters encoded is
driven by a desire to preserve culture, and to represent things on computers
like classical literature which may use ancient forms no longer in use. Like
you, until last year I assumed that the chars not in unihan now were not
used in modern times. However, that assumption is proving wrong especially
in the case of Hong Kong, whose characters were apparently left out of the
national standards of both the PRC and Taiwan, and therefore didn't make it
into Unicode when Unihan was created based on super-setting existing
national standards. Fortunately the governments now seem to be aware of the
importance of cataloguing and encoding these characters, so progress is
finally being made.

-----Original Message-----
From: Rick McGowan []
Sent: March 23, 1999 2:39 PM
To: Unicode List
Subject: Re: RE: [long] Use of Unicode in AbiWord

Chris Pratley wrote, about a thread that's some days old now regarding the
nonce Characters...

> Unfortunately, Rick, it is a little more real than that. The Hong Kong
> Government provides fonts and input methods for its "GCCS" private
> to Big5.

Ah, the first possible whiff of potential physical evidence I've ever heard.
 Can you actually produce the evidence? For instance, can you point me at a
governmental web page, and/or cite Hong Kong governmental publications
listing the precise character repertoire?

> Similarly, the Taiwan Government maintains its records in a private
> encoding system that has around 50000+ Han characters.

Great, now we're getting warm. You have documentary evidence of this one as

I was saying before that to my knowledge nobody has ever provided
_evidence_. Can you fax me a page of governmental documentation? I fear we
are still in the realm of "uncorroborated assertions made by Unicode
and their buddies". I'd still like to see some factual evidence to which
I/we can point people as proof of the existence of such characters.

Until then I remain your,

        "Doubting Ricky"

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