Re: Is it true that Unicode is insufficient for Oriental languages?

From: William Overington (
Date: Sat May 24 2003 - 06:53:32 EDT

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    Michael Kaplan wrote as follows.


    I'll take some of that action, too. Not since W.O. have we had someone
    around who has been so insistent that Unicode is missing the requirements of
    its users, without really understanding what The "Unicode way" is....

    end quote

    Well, as I remember it, when I put forward some of my ideas in this forum, a
    well-known and much-respected linguist referred me to an ISO document about
    characters which document defined character as in an appendix of the same
    document and that I then found that my ideas were entirely in accordance
    with that definition.

    What is the Unicode way?

    Is it a road? Is there an intersection with Antitrust Avenue and is the
    barrelhead on the pavement near "The Restriction of Progress"?

    However, as the matter of matrices has been raised and I have been mentioned
    by Mr Kaplan, then I feel that it is only fair that I should be allowed the
    opportunity to mention a Private Use Area solution which I devised some time
    ago and published on the web.

    In relation to matrices, are codes similar to the following what are needed?

    U+E2F6, U+E2F7, U+E2F8 as defined in the following document.

    These are my own definitions in the Private Use Area.

    The following pages might also be of interest.

    The first two are about eutocode graphics. The second needs a Java enabled

    Yesterday afternoon I updated the version of the Quest text font which is
    available at the following web page.

    This version includes visible glyphs for 28 code points in the Private Use
    Area to do with expressing a sequential multimedia display in a Unicode
    plain text file, such as when using the Microsoft WordPad program to author
    a Unicode text file to customize a Java program which will produce a display
    on an interactive television. That is, the code points display as a symbol
    on the screen of a PC during content authorship yet would be acted upon to
    change colour, wait for a button push and so on, when acted upon by a Java
    program written for the purpose. I am hoping that a Java program suitable
    for broadcasting will become available.

    I am hoping to add some further symbols for a more advanced multimedia
    system which has a programmed learning capability. However, the four Object
    Replacement Character Synonym glyphs are all available in the present 1.04
    version of the Quest text font.

    The place to discuss these matters is the Digital Television Interactive
    Broadcasting forum which is run from the webspace.
    These codes will hopefully open up content authorship for the digital
    interactive broadcasting platform so that people may prepare content in
    Unicode plain text files on PCs and send them in so that they can be
    broadcast and used to customize a generic software package which produces a
    multimedia display by interpreting the text and the Private Use Area codes
    in the Unicode plain text customizing file.

    The Private Use Area is entirely suitable for the needs of my research and
    for its application. Certainly, if the Unicode Consortium decides to encode
    such features into regular Unicode then it has the opportunity to do so and
    such items could be codified. However, if that is not what the Unicode
    Consortium decides to do, then that is a matter for it, the Private Use Area
    is available and much can be achieved by using it. The possibility of
    publishing the code points for the eutocode system in a book exists and
    indeed if the Unicode Consortium really wishes to decline the chance to
    include such codes with the emphasis of the people who are keen to accept a
    bet, then the opportunity for publishing a private specification for such
    features is available. My view is that it is better to just get something
    going using the Private Use Area and not to spend time on trying to persuade
    the Unicode Consortium to consider such technology.

    In relation to the Private Use Area, it was said that there would be a
    change in the wording of the Unicode Standard and I am looking forward to
    finding out exactly what the new wording is to be!

    William Overington

    24 May 2003

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