Re: ASCII and Unicode lifespan

From: Alexander Kh. (
Date: Wed May 18 2005 - 19:24:59 CDT

  • Next message: Mark Davis: "Re: ASCII and Unicode lifespan"

    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Michael Everson" <>
    To: "Unicode Discussion" <>
    Subject: Re: ASCII and Unicode lifespan
    Date: Wed, 18 May 2005 22:25:34 +0100

    > Even if it were, it remains the case that such "perfection" will
    > still build on the analysis of the world's writing systems which we
    > are doing today as we encode scripts and characters. It is not
    > arrogance to recognize that this work will, in fact, be used for
    > centuries, if our civilization endures. It is realistic assessment
    > of the work of analysis and encoding and its utility.
    > -- Michael Everson * * Everson Typography * *

    That's Microsoft scale gigantism. I can think of many ways to restrict
    use of Unicode to only non-critical cases where the accuracy of data is
    of no importance. For example: by using a modified UTF-8 format where
    a ASCII letter can be used as a switch selector between any local
    encodings - that method will allow to save A LOT of space for commonly
    used characters.

    I think that by biulding extentions to UTF-8, such as a state-machine
    system, and using small but well-thought encoding tables and fonts one
    can totally avoid using Unicode, which is sloppy, inaccurate, incomplete
    and for some strange reason uses character '\0' within a string. This is
    not to mention its endianness problem. And having Capital letters encoded
    in every script, even those that did not have them originally, is even
    better reason not to use that encoding in any critical applications.
    Considering the amount if headache tge case-sensitivity introduced in
    data bases, file systems, internet applications, and many login shells...
    the damage is so great, it is comparable to a incurable virus! And spreading
    that virus to scripts which are yet to be re-discovered by the historians,
    catalogued in databases, used in search engins and what not - maybe even used
    as fancy login names... Every time I design a program that uses Glagolitic,
    I now have tho think if I should use the big letters or small letters, which
    look the same, in order to prepare them for indexing. And more than that, I
    will have to take care of preserving the case for those systems which don't
    know that script, so I will have to take care of being able to make a case-
    sensitive or case-insensitive search and so on. All that for what? For some
    old stupid standard which was never used anyway...

    What can I say? I see no use of this conversation. I will look into any
    possibility to avoid using unicode for any critical purpose.

    Best regards,

    Alexander Kh.

    Sign-up for Ads Free at

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed May 18 2005 - 19:25:38 CDT