Re: Unicode character names enshrined in a new programming language

From: Dean Snyder (
Date: Mon May 02 2005 - 10:13:20 CDT

  • Next message: Rick Cameron: "RE: Cyrillic - accented/acuted vowels"

    Nelson H. F. Beebe wrote at 6:00 AM on Monday, May 2, 2005:

    >Recent discussions on this list debated the use of Unicode character
    >names in software.
    >This morning, I learned of a language project, Fortress, at Sun, led
    >by noted computer scientist Guy L. Steele Jr.. Fortress supports use
    >of Unicode character names in software. See
    >and the language specification at
    >From p. 105 of the latter:
    >>> ...
    >>> The expression:
    >>> is converted to:
    >>> ($\phi \psi + \omega \lambda$)
    >>> ...

    But the Fortress programming language designers clearly see the need for
    alternate forms of Unicode characters in user interfaces. Witness the
    following additional Fortress language features:

    * Fortress substitutes underscores for spaces in unicode character names.

    * Fortress aliases many mathematical Unicode characters with shortened
    forms like:
    "phi" for "GREEK_SMALL_LETTER_PHI"

    * 'Additionally, all Unicode character names are aliased with names in
    which the following substrings are elided:
    "LETTER "
    "DIGIT "
    "RADICAL "
    "NUMERAL "
    " OPERATOR"'

    * And ... "There are many sets of Unicode character names for which all
    characters in the set share the same prefix. ... Furthermore, characters
    with the same prefix are often typed together. To facilitate entering
    characters with a common prefix, Fortress supports distribution of a
    Unicode prefix over a sequence of character names."

    [See the appendix, "Support for Unicode Input in ASCII", starting at page
    105 of <>]


    Dean A. Snyder

    Assistant Research Scholar
    Manager, Digital Hammurabi Project
    Computer Science Department
    Whiting School of Engineering
    218C New Engineering Building
    3400 North Charles Street
    Johns Hopkins University
    Baltimore, Maryland, USA 21218

    office: 410 516-6850
    cell: 717 817-4897

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Mon May 02 2005 - 10:24:15 CDT