Re: Does Unicode 4.1 change NFC?

From: Peter Kirk (
Date: Tue Apr 05 2005 - 06:25:16 CST

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    On 05/04/2005 12:25, Andrew C. West wrote:

    >I have been listening with increasing incredulity to Peter's claims that the
    >Unicode standard should be constrained by *theoretical* problems resulting from
    >invalid assumptions on the part of bad programmers. By the same reasoning no
    >international standard should mandate four-digit years, as "bad programmers"
    >used to be in the habit of storing years as two digits only, on the mistaken
    >assumption that the end of the world was more likely than humankind managing to
    >survive to the next century.

    Good comparison. Four digit years were unavoidable, but how much did it
    cost the industry to correct the Y2K bug? However much we might have
    blamed an earlier generation of "bad programmers", that didn't reduce
    the cost of correcting the bug. And the same will be true of any bugs
    caused by this Unicode decision - with the exception that this situation
    was avoidable. I note by the way that Ken has agreed that the decision
    was perverse, while noting that it was not the UTC's decision.

    >As any "good" software engineer knows, bad programming practice is never
    Absolutely. But in practice I suspect many programmers compile the UCD
    data into their applications rather than treat it as a separate data
    source. This may result in faster code, but also complicates maintenance.

    > ...
    >As a closet software engineer I have some experience in both writing and testing
    >software, ...

    I also have such experience, though a few years ago now excpet for some
    odds and ends.

    Peter Kirk (personal) (work)
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