From: Philippe Verdy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Tue Feb 17 2004 - 17:21:21 EST
> In addition, superscripts and subscripts for palatalization, velarization,
> aspiration, etc., already exist in the Unicode IPA block. It seems to me that
> the function of such glyphs is similar to that of a diacritic in that it
> modifies the meaning of the base glyph.
> How is the term "plain text" being used here? Is the distinction one between
> natural language and scientific notation?
My best response about it would be that "plain-text" does not require to
restrict to a natural language. After all decimal digits are not in the natural
language, it's a notational symbol that we do recognize as a needed character
(same thing for currency symbols, and even for many unspoken punctuations...)
We don't need to exclude symbols or notations from Unicode, which already
defines a full "S" category for them (as well as "N" for numeric symbols). So
why do you seem to suggest that IPA should not be there and considered as
Remember that even the scripts for natural languages are themselves conventional
notations. This is just enough to justify that other notations be included in
plain-text, as long as we can easily determine a distinctive "character"
identity in the candidate symbol, and a distinctive representative glyph or
text-control function, without implying necessarily a required layout or
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