Re: Benefits of Unicode

From: Thomas Chan (
Date: Mon Jan 29 2001 - 20:04:08 EST

On Mon, 29 Jan 2001, David Starner wrote:

> On Mon, Jan 29, 2001 at 01:06:44PM -0800, Alistair Vining wrote:
> > Somebody mentioned TRON, which I'd not heard of before, but
> > <> says:
> The link on the Tron webpage ( to the English information
> about the Tron character set is broken. But as other links indicate
> and I remember, TRON imported Unicode 2.0 for all of TRON's non-CJK
> characters. So they imported many of Unicode's minor problems, and
> fall increasingly short of Unicode's support for the world's languages.
> (I wonder if there's even been an attempt to rewrite all the information
> needed to properly implement those characters. . .)
> Does anyone else have any information about the Tron character set?

Go to the website, and there's a lot
of information scattered among various press releases and galleries. For
example, has
pretty pictures of an editor with vertical text capability and a
utility program to help find characters among the big pool of z-variants
or font-level variants.

Or look at , which shows
how TRON basically swallowed up (without unification) various character
sets when they don't have the expertise in-house, and this is not limited
to non-CJK writing systems. For example, Traditional Chinese needs are
addressed by swallowing up Big5 or CNS 11643-1986 (they are not very
clear which), which is pathetic since CNS 11643-1992 was available at the

Meanwhile, Mojikyo, a collection of nice TrueType fonts
( that is essentially the repetoire of the
decades-old _Dai Kanwa Jiten_ (Morohashi) plus additions, is swallowed up
in an attempt to up the number of characters, but the expertise in the
Mojikyo project is primarily Japanese-only, and they miss many characters
that one would find from Chinese sources such as the mid-1980's _Hanyu Da
Zidian_ (going into Unicode 3.1), or even various national standards in
East Asia newer than the 1980's ones they are familiar with. Other
inclusions inherited from Mojikyo like the Jiagu (shell and bone)
proto-Chinese script or the Shuiwen (mistranslated as "water writing") are
probably pre-mature, while inclusion of scripts like Siddham (listed as
"bonji" or "Brahma" characters)--used for religious purposes in Japan--and
the lack of coverage of others is rather interesting for it says about its
universality and the resources and expertise at their disposal.

Thomas Chan

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Tue Jul 10 2001 - 17:21:18 EDT