Re: New contribution

Date: Wed May 05 2004 - 14:23:30 CDT

----- Original Message -----
From: "D. Starner" <>
To: <>
Sent: Monday, May 03, 2004 9:37 PM
Subject: Re: New contribution

> > A possible question to ask which is blatantly leading would be:
> >
> > Would you have any objections if your bibliographic database
> > application suddenly began displaying all of your Hebrew
> > book titles using the palaeo-Hebrew script rather than
> > the modern Hebrew script and the only way to correct
> > the problem would be to procure and install a new font?
> Again, change Hebrew to Latin and palaeo-Hebrew to Fraktur and see
> how many objections you get. Again, no, you can't use archaic forms
> of letters in many situations, but that doesn't mean they aren't
> unified with the modern forms of letters. No one would have procure
> and install a new font, because Arial/Helevica/FreeSans/misc-fixed
> have the modern form of Hebrew and will always have the modern form
> of Hebrew and all other scripts that have a modern form.
> I mean, maybe you're right and Phonecian has glyph forms too far from
> Hebrew's to be useful, and it's connected with Syriac and Greek as
> much as Hebrew, but this argument just doesn't fly.

It was only a contrived example of a leading question devised to
elicit a pre-determined specific response and was intended to
be mildly funny. It was offered in response to a question proposed
by John Hudson, which, although not exactly leading, I considered

Yes, it's pretty far-fetched. But, your response supposes that
bibliographic databases are always displayed in a fixed-width font.
I have a bibliographic database which can display UTF-8 material
in a proportional font. It works by exporting a record (or, group
of records) in HTML format as a separate file and firing up the
browser with this on-the-fly page loaded. Since the database
application is "stone-age", it has no awareness of anything as exotic
as character sets. So, in order to edit these UTF-8 records, a record
is exported in plain text format and my application fires up BabelPad,
then re-imports to the database from the altered text file. This is a
"poor man's" Unicode enabled multilingual database. Yeah, it's
kludgey, but it sure does work!

Suppose that,

1) Phoenician is unified with Hebrew.

2) A user has a bibliographic database which uses FreeSans.

3) The FreeSans developer is a Phoenician script enthusiast
    who removes the Hebrew glyphs from the font and
    replaces them with Phoenician glyphs.

4) The user updates FreeSans on the system and fails to make
    a back-up copy of the font.

5) Meanwhile, the FreeSans developer has pulled all of the
    previous editions of FreeSans off the internet...

Hey, it *could* happen! (Yeah, and pigs could learn to fly.)

Best regards,

James Kass

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Fri May 07 2004 - 18:45:26 CDT