Re: String name and Character Name

From: John Hudson (
Date: Mon Apr 11 2005 - 21:04:37 CST

  • Next message: N. Ganesan: "Re: String name and Character Name"

    Sinnathurai Srivas wrote:

    > On the question of character/string names, my simple question then would
    > be "The name used has full of meaning. UC pretending that it has no
    > meaning is not true. It was selected on the basis that some one told UC
    > that this is the meaning of this item and use it. So the string name now
    > has meaning. Weather one tells one or the other, trying to find
    > loopholes to hide facts is not acceptable.

    > Strings were named with meaning. Strings must remain meaningfull. String
    > names has no meaning is not true and not acceptable.

    The fact that names were originally assigned to be meaningful does not mean that
    individual names remain 'full of meaning'. The Latvian letters to which I referred
    earlier, which Unicode names identify as being 'WITH CEDILLA', are again a good example:
    yes, these names were originally assigned in the belief that they had a meaningful
    relationship to the identity of these letters. As it turns out, they were misnamed,
    because the mark below these letters is not a cedilla. As far as I'm concerned, this means
    that these particular names are not meaningful, because they do not accurately reflect the
    identity of the letters. This doesn't mean that they were not intended to be meaningful,
    but I reckon meaningfulness in terms of usefulness in describing reality. Since the name
    'WITH CEDILLA' does not describe the real identity of these letters, the name cannot be
    said to be either useful or meaningful. The same is, regretably, true of the Tamil aytham:
    the name assigned by Unicode is incorrect and hence meaingless as an means of describing
    the actual identity of this character.

    But whether the name is meaningful or not, it is not going to change because it cannot be
    changed because of stability agreements between Unicode, ISO and other organisations. If
    it could be changed, I don't think you would find any opposition to changing it -- no one
    *wants* the standard to include incorrect and meaningless things --, but it is a practical
    impossibility. There are other things in the Unicode Standard that some of use would
    dearly love to see changed -- things that are, in practical terms, more important than
    character names because they affect character ordering and other implementation issues --,
    but these are covered by the same stability agreements as the names, and we have to accept
    that they are not going to be changed.

    John Hudson

    Tiro Typeworks
    Vancouver, BC
    Currently reading:
    A century of philosophy, by Hans Georg Gadamer
    David Jones: artist and poet, ed. Paul Hills

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