I am NOT a unicode expert but I am a Japanese speaker. Here are my 2 cents:
Japanese document must consist of:
hiragana: less than 100 characters
katakana: less than 100 characters
kanji: basic kanji has 6,879 characters as defined in JIS X 0208-1990
extended kanji has 6,067 characters as defined in JIS X 0212-1990
The extended kanji are rarely used -- less than 1% of daily newspaper. The
MicroSoft's developed Shift-JIS encoding support hiragana, katakana, basic
kanji, but not extended kanji.
Technically, a Japanese document can be written in all Roman characters, but
this is not a true Japanese document. It is very difficult to read and it leads
to ambiguity and misunderstanding. It was only used back in the Telex days, when
people had no choice.
Otto Stolz <Otto.Stolz@uni-konstanz.de> on 2000/07/12 07:41:35
To: "Unicode List" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
cc: email@example.com (bcc: Foster Feng/TYO/NIC)
Subject: Re: Subset of Unicode to represent Japanese Kanji?
> The Japanese I must support is the Kanji form. [...] I cannot support
> Unicode in its entirety due to memory constraints.
If I am not mistaken, Kanji is ideographic characters, which would take
the lion's share of memory to implement. Probably, you have to support
kana (hiragana or katakana).
I do not know Japanese, so others may jump in.
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