RE: Chromatic font research

From: Marco Cimarosti (
Date: Fri Jun 28 2002 - 08:37:42 EDT

William Overington wrote:
> The occurrence of red words raises an interesting aspect of
> this discussion in that a chromatic font would be needed
> for the full stop character when decorated [...]

A chromatic font in *conjunction* with markup, of course.

You are talking abut *decorative* color, and there is no need to have any
decorative elements in *plain* text, if I understand the meaning of the
English adjective "plain".

A decorated full stop should only appear within a piece of text marked up in
some special way, e.g.:

        <chromatic main="black" decoration="red">
                This is my colorful text.

Therefore, color decoration is an issue only for *fonts* and/or *rich* text
systems, not for Unicode or *plain* text encoding.

--- * --- * ---

The above statement would suddenly become false upon the discovery of a
*writing* system where color is a *structural* element, that must be
reproduced also in plain text.

But such a writing system is so far just a theoretical *hypothesis*!

I have brought evidence that color seems a structural element of the Aztec
codices, but I have *not* proven that Aztec codices constitute a *writing*

On the contrary, I can report that most scholars deny this. Florian Coulmas
(in his "Blackwell Encyclopedia of Writing Systems") says that Aztec is a
"borderline case" between writing proper and pictographic systems.

So, as Ken Whistler said, at the present stage it does not seem that Aztec
glyphs are valid candidates for encoding and, hence, the issue is just
fireplace chatting.

_ Marco

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