RE: Saudi-Arabian Copyright sign

From: Kenneth Whistler (
Date: Mon Sep 20 2004 - 15:07:56 CDT

  • Next message: Asmus Freytag: "Re: Saudi-Arabian Copyright sign"

    Asmus responded:

    > >It's a simple combining character. Even if you can't do arbitrary circles
    > >around characters, you can take one character sequence and map it to the
    > >glyph in a font. Systems that can't do even that need to be fixed.
    > In other words, you would like to treat this as a mandatory ligature.
    > To make this work in interchange, we need to get the buy-in from enough
    > platform, application and font vendors that they want to support this and
    > similar characters in that way (and fix their products where necessary).
    > If we can get that kind of buy-in, then we could add this and other special
    > purpose circled characters via the new "named sequences".
    > Lacking such buy-in, the addition of these as characters becomes more
    > appealing.

    In addition, for something like a copyright symbol, there are
    property issues to consider, particularly in a R-to-L context.

    The sequence <heh, combining-circle> as an AL strong R-to-L
    character following by a combining mark, which will inherit
    the directionality of its base. So the sequence will be set to
    <AL, AL> for the purposes of bidirectional formatting.

    The question for any potential proposal of a "Saudi-Arabian
    Copyright Sign" is whether its directional properties should be
    strong right-to-left (i.e. equivalent to how <heh, combining-circle>
    would behave) or should be neutral (bc=ON), as for U+00A9
    COPYRIGHT SIGN. A demonstrable difference in directional properties
    would strengthen the case for separate encoding, whereas if
    the proposed characters is bc=AL, then the case is weaker.

    Second, there is the question of cursive joining for Arabic.
    I don't know anything in the Unicode Standard that states that
    a combining enclosing mark breaks cursive ligation. It stands
    to reason that it *should*, but I don't know anything that
    requires it. Certainly the application of *other* combining
    marks, including the regular Arabic vowel pointing, does *not*
    break cursive connection. Since it would appear to be
    basically undefined and implementation-dependent what would
    happen to an Arabic letter if followed by a combining enclosing
    mark as the standard is currently written, this could be another
    good argument in favor of simply having a Saudi-Arabian Copyright
    Sign as a distinctly encoded character.

    Third, I don't like the proposed name, SAUDI-ARABIAN COPYRIGHT SIGN,
    for this. In general, 10646 doesn't go the route of naming characters
    after *countries*, even if their general use is restricted in
    area. A name more descriptive simply of the symbol itself
    would probably be more acceptable, e.g.:

      * used in Saudi Arabia
    or even:

      * a copyright sign used in Saudi Arabia

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