RE: Devanagari question

From: Ayers, Mike (
Date: Wed Nov 15 2000 - 13:57:49 EST

> From: Rick McGowan []
> Mike Ayers wrote:
> > The last I knew,
> > computer-savvy Taiwan and Hong Kong were continuing to invent new
> > characters. In the end, the onus is on the computer to
> support the user.
> Yes, the computer should support the user, but... The
> invention of new characters to serve multitudes is OK, and
> international standards will probably continue to support
> that. But I don't think it's reasonable or appropriate to
> keep inventing new characters willy-nilly for individuals (as
> reported), and then expect them to be added to an
> international standard. That's silly. The onus is not on
> international standards to support the whimsical production
> of novel, rarely-used, or nonce characters of the type
> reported to be generated.

        That is not established. The degree to which computer or user will
dictate what will and will not be permitted has yet to be decided.
Certainly, I already have full support for any words that I care to make up
- I need merely spell them. Since hanzi are words-as-characters, the issue
is much more cloudy, since the position of the Unicode specification (due to
the encoding method used) is that hanzi are characters-only. This may not
be the final solution.

> In any case, I still have never seen actual documentary
> evidence that would prove to me that in fact Taiwan and Hong
> Kong *ARE* creating new characters at the drop of a hat.
> People just keep saying that to scare everyone. Sounds like
> an urban myth to me.

        Good point. I will go seek a definitive answer. Not much point in
discussing this if it doesn't really happen.


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