Re: New MS Mac Office and Unicode?

From: John Delacour (JD@BD8.COM)
Date: Wed Jan 14 2004 - 19:10:44 EST

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    At 2:19 pm -0800 14/1/04, John Hudson wrote:

    >Han-Yi provided a list of *keyboards* and indicated that Mac Office
    >will support 'input, display and basic editing of Unicode characters
    >associated with' those keyboards. I think your question, Peter, is
    >what will Mac Office do with characters not associated with those
    >keyboards? Obviously they won't claim any support for *input* but
    >what about display and editing?

    What is input by a certain keyboard layout is entirely at the
    discretion of the designer of the layout. If I want to type small
    Greek Alpha with perispomeni, I can use the hex input to type either:

    a) option + 1fb6

    a) option + 03b10342

    The resultant character will be identical.

    The keyboard layout I use for polytonic Greek uses only pre-composed
    characters because that's the way I've written it. It would be quite
    simple to have it type either or both with the same keystroke or any

    If I want to type Lao, I get a keyboard layout to do so. Once I have
    it, I can type Lao in any editor that supports Unicode. That's all
    there is to it.

    The keyboards are nothing to do with Microsoft surely? If they feel
    like bundling certain keyboards with Office, well and good. That
    won't mean you have to use them and it won't mean you can't use your
    own layouts or layouts downloaded from sites that do layouts. I
    really don't see what the problem is.

    If parts of the new MS suite have difficulty rendering any particular
    sort of text, then that would be hardly surprising for applications
    that haven't even been released yet and any rough edges, if they
    exist, would be tidied up in due course.

    I can understand the great scepticism expressed in some postings
    here, having used Nisus since 1990 or so and never used Word because
    it wasn't capable even of dealing with legacy two-byte scripts. I
    will almost certainly continue to use Nisus, but at least now I shall
    have a choice.


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