From: Mark E. Shoulson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Wed Feb 16 2005 - 17:35:20 CST
Asmus Freytag wrote:
> Changing the case mapping for U+00DF "ß" is not possible -
> particularly since the transformation U+00DF "ß" -> "SS" is in fact
> officially correct - despite the fact that Andreas and Karl can point
> to many instances where it is not used or not desired.
> Adding a new character, like the one that Andreas proposed, to the
> standard in the face of well established case mapping from sharp-s to
> SS would result in major inconsistencies.
> We can all agree that the usage for the shape represented by the
> proposed character was quite well-attested, but it was decided that
> due to legacy issues the only way this can currently be handled is on
> the font or glyph level.
You're certainly the one who knows what is and is not feasible or
possible for Unicode, but I have to admit I found the evidence in the
original proposal pretty damn convincing. That certainly looks like
Which therefore raises the more general question: what with all these
"immutable" (stable) characteristics, what's Unicode to do in a case
where the usage really did completely change? Or if the initial Unicode
decision was, in fact, completely wrong/mistaken? Apparently, German
really *does* need to be able to use ß as a capital letter (whether as a
separate letter or caseless).
I'm not trying to be contrary or to accuse; maybe the decision really
was right all along. But hypothetically, then, what IF the UTC screwed
up; what's to be done? I guess the only thing would be to define a new
character/block/whatever from scratch and deprecate the old one.
> Karl's suggestion to add a standardized variant would create a
> standard (and ignorable) way to request the glyph variant, if
> available. It would solve the representation issue for the graphical
> form, but would still leave words in which it appears with a 'lower
> case' letter. If people feel that supporting this glyph variant is
> important, and that the use of mixed case words is acceptable (given
> the legacy constraints we have), then perhaps re-raising the proposal
> in terms of a variation sequence might make sense.
To the extent that I follow the advantages of VSs, I guess this sounds
> PS: as for item 2 in Karl's list, usages do evolve. I wonder what
> Unicode will do if faced with a situation in which the *majority* use
> of the character has become caseless (something that's clearly not the
> case today).
I guess that is my question.
Disclaimer: I am a complete NON-expert on German orthography and typography.
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