Re: Musical symbols

Date: Sat Jan 07 2006 - 14:16:19 CST

  • Next message: Rick McGowan: "Re: Musical symbols"

    Rick McGowan <> wrote on 01/07/2006 01:01:48 PM:

    > There is at least one freely available font that I think has musical
    > symbols... Have you tried James Kass's "Code 2000" or "Code 2001" fonts?
    Code 2001 has an incomplete set of Musical symbols in the 1D100 to 1D16D
    range, plus some musical symbols composed on a five line staff in the
    Private Use area range F03E8 to F0441.

    The issue of Musical symbols in Unicode is one that needs to be addressed.
    Let me quote Michael Good, developer of Music XML, who wrote me on the
    subject last October:

    "Michael Good" <> wrote on 10/13/2005 03:09:07 PM:
    > My understanding is that the Unicode character set for musical symbols
    > was designed more from the perspective of being able to include
    > musical examples in text than for use in musical scores. A font
    > designed for use in text works differently than a font designed for
    > use in musical scores, particularly in how font characters are
    > designed to line up with each other. Many music font developers have
    > separate products for score fonts and text fonts.
    > When you look at what's available in the Unicode symbol set, you see
    > that it is incomplete for representing musical scores in different
    > styles. Since it is incomplete, that means you need to resort to
    > non-Unicode standard encodings at some point for the characters in
    > your music font. If that's the case, what is the advantage of moving
    > to the Unicode musical symbols? It seems simpler to keep everything as
    > application-specific encodings, using the existing Sonata / Maestro /
    > Opus conventions as a starting point.
    > Unicode musical symbols are especially tricky to work with in many
    > languages because they fall outside the range of characters that can
    > be represented as a single 16-bit number. This creates problems when
    > using a lot of today's development tools. So moving to Unicode musical
    > symbols would add problems without providing significant benefits.
    > Over time this particular development problem may get resolved. But
    > the completeness problem is big enough on its own to discourage the
    > commercial creation of Unicode-compliant musical fonts.

    I hope this helps clarify the situation.

    Kent Spielmann

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