Re: Chromatic font research

Date: Fri Jun 28 2002 - 09:35:22 EDT

On 06/28/2002 04:53:38 AM "William Overington" wrote:

>Peter Constable wrote as follows.
>>It may so seem to you, but this definitely is *not* in the spirit of that
>May I enquire please as to your reasons for saying so?

This is kind of like explaining one's faith / world view: to everyone else
who shares the same world view, it just makes sense and doesn't require
explanation, but to those that strongly hold a different faith / world
view, trying to explain it can be fruitless because every description is
understood in terms of a different world view.

I can tell you that what you described is not in the spirit of the
definition because what you described is not text. Everyone who has been
involved in the development of Unicode and ISO 10646 will agree with me,
because they have a very similar understanding of what text is. We don't
need to explain it to one another; it's obvious to all of us. But if you
you don't share that understanding of what text is, you'll probably
continue to disagree with me and every one of the people who is actually
developing the Unicode standard.

>The document does not mention markup.

Because that document isn't discussing markup. It's discussing characters
and glyphs.

>I am concerned that a lot of progress for the future
>may be being held back just because some people have got it into their
>as to what should be done and what should not be done

Hmmm... It seems to me that significant progress is made when one can
recognise something with limits, work out exactly what does and what does
not need to be done, and then focus on the things that need to be done.
Sure, every now and then someone needs to shake things up and knock away
the fences that keep up from seeing new challenges worth pursuing. Perhaps
even you, William Overington, may succeed in having such an impact on some
sector of the IT industry. But what you wrote in your previous message
sounded like using a character set encoding standard to represent
potentially any type of information. Industry does not want to go that way,
and I don't think it's because they are stuck in a rut. It's because after
lots of years of experience in information technologies, they have divided
up information to be represented digitally into different spheres.
Characters, meaning those things that are typified by the graphic symbols
that have been used in writing human languages for a few millienia, belong
in one particular sphere; general information that can be expressed as text
belongs in other spheres.

- Peter

Peter Constable

Non-Roman Script Initiative, SIL International
7500 W. Camp Wisdom Rd., Dallas, TX 75236, USA
Tel: +1 972 708 7485
E-mail: <>

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