Re: Phetsarat font, Lao unicode

From: Brian Wilson (
Date: Wed Jul 11 2007 - 11:38:09 CDT

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    The Lao convention goes back at least to the 1920's as one of the
    dictionaries I have is a reprint of that. The other is from the ministry of
    education. I have seen primers from various eras. So there is consensus in
    Laos for using an x to represent Lao vowels without a base consonant.
    Regarding Thai, they use a dash-like symbol. I was just suggesting that
    since a dash is needed for Thai and an x is needed for Lao, then why not
    make them both available to each other.

    I am not sure what kind of consensus is needed. Hebrew and Arabic is
    written from right to left. European language are written from left to
    right. We don't have a consensus on which direction a language should be
    written in, but each language operates well within its own rules. Both Lao
    and Thai are legitimate languages. The pedagogical need to refer to vowels
    without a base consonant is not an everyday necessity, but that doesn't
    lesson its validity.

    On 7/11/07, Philippe Verdy <> wrote:
    > Your opinion just confirms what I feared : it's just notational and
    > there's no consensus about the base symbol to use : we have now at least 4
    > base characters:
    > - The dotted circle symbol (as in Unicode charts)
    > - An x-like cross symbol ; but I won't like the proposal of reusing
    > the Latin x letter due to its metrics, graphical features and styles ;
    > - A dash-like symbol (possibly an underscore-like symbol too),
    > however reusing the dash may cause line breaking and word breaking issues ;
    > - NBSP (and possibly SPACE, but with line breaking issues,
    > especially in plain-text Emails)
    > Philippe.
    > ------------------------------
    > Brian Wilson [] wrote :
    > *Envoyé :* mercredi 11 juillet 2007 18:02
    > *À :*
    > *Cc :* James Kass;; Anousak Souphavanh
    > *Objet :* Re: Phetsarat font, Lao unicode
    > I have just been to Laos last week and purchased the two latest
    > dictionaries. I also have seen elementary school primers. These all list
    > the consonants and vowels separately as Thai. In Thai, the convention is to
    > use a hyphen type symbol as the base character. In Lao, it is to use an x
    > type symbol.
    > I do not see the point in opening up the possibilities for expanding an
    > infinite number of base character possibilities. As Thai and Lao are close
    > cousins, I would go for over kill and allow vowels in both languages to
    > attach to either an "-" or an "x" base character.
    > Brian

    Brian Wilson, Director
    Mission College Translation Center
    P.O. Box 4
    Muaklek, Saraburi 18180
    Tel: 66-36-344-777 ext 1221
    Mobile: 66-86-921-0108
    Fax:  66-36-341-629

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