Re: An attempt to focus the PUA discussion [long]

From: Peter Kirk (
Date: Thu Apr 29 2004 - 18:06:12 EDT

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    On 29/04/2004 11:27, Language Analysis Systems, Inc. Unicode list reader

    > I should probably just let this go, but I'm going to weigh in on the
    > PUA issue one more time. Mailing-list and Usenet discussions tend to
    > be unfocused by their very nature, so any attempt by me to focus this
    > discussion is probably doomed to failure, but I'm going to try
    > anyway. If nothing else, maybe clarifying my thoughts on this will
    > provide text I can incorporate into the next edition of my book, if it
    > goes to another edition.
    > ...
    > 1 and 2 are the solutions Unicode can mostly do, but they're both
    > problematic and I don't think they solve all the problems. 6 and 7
    > are the solutions that are available now without any OS or application
    > vendors having to do a thing. They're ugly, but it we're talking
    > mostly about stuff that's destined to find its way into Unicode
    > someday, why won't they work as interim solutions, and why isn't the
    > energy currently being put into solutions 1 and 2 better put into
    > actually standardizing these characters? 4 seems desirable, but hard
    > to pull off without a lot of market strength (although there might be
    > enough of a market to make 5 feasible). And 3 seems like a bad idea
    > all around.
    > I'd like to see the yelling stop and see people focus on the actual
    > needs and on realistic solutions insted of just complaining about how
    > the UTC isn't fair. And to the degree that the problem isn't really
    > with Unicode at all (which is mostly), I'd like to see that discussion
    > happen somewhere else.
    > --Rich Gillam
    > Language Analysis Systems, Inc.

    Thank you, Rich, for your useful contribution.

    I don't see the real problem with your solution 2, or for that matter
    your solution 1 given that very likely no one is yet using the whole of
    the existing PUA. Personally, I am not asking for two whole planes, just
    a small area. It is only CJK which needs whole planes, and for that it
    seems the existing PUA is adequate.

    As for 4, I can see that there is at least a possibility of getting
    support for something like Graphite into a reasonable range of
    applications, and also a possibility of getting support for definition
    of PUA character properties into Graphite (which is open source).

    6 unfortunately does not provide suitable mechanisms for all the
    relevant Unicode properties. For example, there are no controls to force
    a PUA character to be default ignorable, or to make it into a combining
    character with a defined combining class. Maybe some such controls can
    be added, although I am not sure how much can be done without
    destabilising important things like normalisation, and this would
    certainly help to resolve the issues.

    Peter Kirk (personal) (work)

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