Re: Chinese rod numerals

From: John Jenkins (
Date: Sat Jan 10 2004 - 14:13:11 EST

  • Next message: Christopher Cullen: "[OT] Legacy encodings (was: Re: Chinese rod numerals)"

    Personally, I think it's an excellent idea. It'd be good to get it on
    the UTC agenda for next month, so if you could start on the form. I
    can give you any help you need.

    On Jan 10, 2004, at 5:23 AM, Christopher Cullen wrote:

    > I am an academic with research interests in the history of ancient
    > Chinese mathematics, and I should like to propose the encoding of
    > traditional Chinese rod numerals.
    > These represent the arrays of "counting rods" on a counting board as
    > used in China for complex calculations before the invention of the
    > abacus. There are eighteen forms in all, representing the numerals
    > one to nine in two forms which are basically versions of each other
    > with a 90 degrees rotation. One form is used for units, the the other
    > for tens, then back to the first form for hundreds, and so on. A zero
    > is represented by a gap in the array. For pictures of these and an
    > explanatory text, see:
    > These forms appear in pre-modern mathematical books in China, and in
    > modern books discussing ancient mathematics. They are not to be
    > confused with the the related "Hangzhou numerals", which are already
    > encoded at 3021-303a. It would be a great convenience to have these
    > as a standard resource rather than having to create a special private
    > font in order to represent them.
    > From a private source, I have been told that these forms are neither
    > in any current Unicode encoding initiative, nor indeed anywhere in the
    > proposal pipeline. I should therefore be grateful for any comments or
    > advice that might guide me towards making a formal submission.
    > Christopher Cullen
    John H. Jenkins

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