Re: Ciphers (Was: Berber/Tifinagh)

From: Kenneth Whistler (
Date: Mon Nov 10 2003 - 19:32:51 EST

  • Next message: Michael Everson: "Re: Berber/Tifinagh (was: Swahili & Banthu)"

    > At 01:57 PM 11/10/2003, Peter Kirk wrote:
    > > Was it a whim that Theban
    > >and Klingon were rejected?

    First of all, Theban hasn't been rejected. It has never
    formally been considered by either the UTC nor WG2 for
    character encoding. Why? Because it is so patently obvious
    that it is a Latin cipher:

    And because there is consensus
    in both committees that encoding of the potentially very
    large number of arbitrary ciphers of Latin letters (and
    other scripts as well) is *not* appropriate for Unicode.
    This is not a "whim" -- it is a considered opinion and consensus
    among professional character encoders of long standing.

    And I don't see why it should be so difficult to just
    accept the obvious here. Asking the list to come up with
    an airtight and axiomatic definition of "cipher" which
    will satisfy all users of the term and apply unambiguously
    to every decision taken by the encoding committees is
    basically irrelevant to the decisions taken here:

       Theban is (obviously) a Latin cipher.
       Because of that, nobody (seriously) involved in
       10646 or Unicode has bothered to try to provide a
       character encoding proposal for it.
       Even *if* someone did, both committees would summarily
       reject it, because they have clear consensus not to
       encode alphabet ciphers.
    Clear enough?

    As for the Klingon (con)script, it *was* formally proposed.
    It was not rejected on a "whim". It was rejected by
    formal motion, based on a document which cited a whole
    string of reasons why the Klingon (con)script should not
    be encoded.

    The vote, after discussion in the committee, was 9 for, 0 against,
    with one abstention. Sounds like technical consensus to me.


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