Re: Variation Selectors

From: David Starner (
Date: Tue Mar 28 2006 - 16:50:31 CST

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    On 3/27/06, Andrew West <> wrote:
    > 1. Bad Standardized Variants
    > For Mathematical operators and CJK ideographs variation selectors are
    > (or will be) used to select glyph variants that may or may not have
    > any semantic significance. My view is that if these differences are
    > not semantically significant they should be expressed using a higher
    > level protocol, and if they are then they should be encoded as
    > separate characters.

    I'm sure that for characters that people want a variation selector
    for, someone can come up with an example where they can claim that
    there's a semantic significance in that document. Mathematians and
    linguists have established semantic differences for characters that
    are almost indistinguishable at times. For differences that don't
    matter 99.9% of the time, the variant selectors let it be ignored

    CJK ideograph variation selectors are more important. It has been
    established to my satisfaction that no one agrees what is a semantic
    significance in CJK ideographs, and that there are people who want to
    distinguish ideographs that aren't distinguished in Unicode. A higher
    level protocol is very clumsy on a letter by letter basis, and the
    fact that Unicode doesn't support distinctions that are percieved as
    necessary has been used to make political hay. Variation selectors
    provide an easy way to support those people.

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