From: Andy White (Andy__White@btinternet.com)
Date: Tue Feb 11 2003 - 23:04:09 EST
Kenneth Whistler wrote:
> The problem here is in part the result of too easily
> using the term "letter" here.
> These things are really a Bengali orthographic solution
> to the problem of representing vowel sounds (in borrowed
> words) that are alien to the "slots" of the basic
> phonology, and which don't have obvious representations
> using the basic vowel letters of the system.
Yes this is the same as the innovation used with the Oriya letter Wa. (A
> As Michael
> suggested, the solution makes use of an existing conjunct
> form of ya, in combination with other vowel forms, and then
> provides a reading for them.
The Oriya letter Wa is the same. It uses an existing conjunct form of Ba
(or Va if you prefer) and combines it with vowel 'O'
> In principle, at some point in the future, either the
> phonology or the orthography or both could evolve to
> the point where the entire constructs start to get handled
> as basic orthographic units (or "letters") for Bengali,
> but it isn't really the place of the Unicode Standard to
> try to push that evolution, if there is a well-defined
> way to represent the sequence using the characters
> already in the standard.
And the well-defined way is?
> In some respect, the problem is similar to arbitrary
> orthographic adaptation [...]. An
> example which comes to mind is using "kl'" to try to
> represent a lateral affricate, for example. The fact that the
> lateral affricate might be a phonological unit in the other
> language, and that it might even have a unitary letter
> representation (e.g., U+019A barred-l) in some other
> orthography, doesn't mean that if people start to represent
> it "kl'" in the "English alphabet" that we then have to turn
> around and encode a "kl'" character in Unicode.
The above seems to be an argument as to why the Oriya Letter Wa should
not have been encoded. (It is after all a modern innovation used to
represent the foreign sound of 'W'.
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