Re: Proposal to encode dominoes and other game symbols

From: Kenneth Whistler (
Date: Tue May 25 2004 - 18:09:01 CDT

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    John Hudson asked:

    > I would
    > like to know what the presumed purpose of U+2616 and U+2617 is.

    In Unicode? To map to JIS X 0213. You need to ask the JSC what *their*
    intent was in adding these two characters to the Japanese standard.

    > Not so. Both sides has four generals: two 'gold' and two 'silver'. The gold and silver
    > generals differ from each other, but each side's pieces are entirely identical.

    Except for orientation on the board, of course.

    > By the way, if any Unicoders play shogi,

    I do -- or used to, a number of years ago.

    > I could bring my travel set next time I come to
    > the conference.

    Unfortunately, I generally attend the UTC meetings and not the conferences,
    so our distribution is complementary.


    P.S. Regarding the dominoes per se, I'm coming down on the side of
    those arguing (as John Cowan has) that the *orientation* of the bones
    is not significant in the plain text usages. The *characters* to
    encode here should be for each distinct bone, regardless of orientation.
    Layout orientation can be handled by other means. I also concur with
    John that going beyond the double-twelve (for now) is just speculative
    and not supported by actual use in dominoes books. This is not a
    case where things are made simpler by encoding a set of 724 symbols.
    With only a canonical orientation of each distinct *bone* required for
    the basic characters, and 0..12 = 13, implies (13 x 12)/2 = 78
    combinations + 1 for the back of a tile, you just need 79 symbols for
    a core set. *That* would be a far more palatable proposal than the
    current one.

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