From: Dean Snyder (email@example.com)
Date: Fri May 21 2004 - 15:53:58 CDT
James Kass wrote at 7:22 AM on Friday, May 21, 2004:
>Doug Ewell responded to Dean Snyder,
>> James Kass pointed out that fears of large numbers of people adopting a
>> Phoenician Unicode encoding would demonstrate the usefulness of the
>> encoding. You responded that the same was true for Fraktur, even though
>> there are no large numbers of people and no demand.
>And no fear.
>> You've sidestepped the question.
I did not sidestep the question; I addressed its bad assumption. See below.
>The choices were:
>1) Ignore the question, maybe it'll go away
>2) Sidestep the question, maybe nobody'll notice
>3) Respond yes, thus agreeing that it would be the right thing
>4) Respond no, thus denying the obvious, stating in effect that
> many people welcoming and using a Phoenician range wouldn't
> imply that a Phoenician range is proper
>An alternative would be to deny the fear. But, this approach wouldn't
>lead anywhere either, because if that fear wasn't very real indeed,
>there wouldn't be any nebulous claims of potential future disruption
>and chaos if the proposal were accepted.
Or (making the missed point explicit):
6) Show that the basic assumption behind the question, "lots of potential
users demonstrates the usefulness of an encoding", is in fact a bad
assumption, and one the UTC itself does not consider decisive.
If the UTC did consider the potential for large numbers of users as a
decisive criterion for encoding a script, Japanese would be separately
encoded. I can assure you, that there would be many users for a
separately encoded Japanese, just as there would be for a separately
encoded Fraktur, many more, of course, than users for Phoenician. And
since Japanese and Fraktur are not separately encoded just because there
would be lots of people who would use such an encoding, why would you, on
that same faulty basis, support a separate encoding for Phoenician? It's
inconsistent thinking, and other reasons will need to be found.
Dean A. Snyder
Assistant Research Scholar
Manager, Digital Hammurabi Project
Computer Science Department
Whiting School of Engineering
218C New Engineering Building
3400 North Charles Street
Johns Hopkins University
Baltimore, Maryland, USA 21218
office: 410 516-6850
cell: 717 817-4897
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