Re: Miscellaneous Mathematical Symbols-A

From: Kenneth Whistler (
Date: Fri Dec 07 2007 - 16:55:04 CST

  • Next message: Doug Ewell: "Re: Miscellaneous Mathematical Symbols-A"

    > If I'm unnecessarily dismissive, how about the Unicode conformance
    > requirements:
    > "C3 A process shall not interpret an unassigned code point as an
    > abstract character."

    True enough. But...

    > This is still about proposed characters,

    Actually, not. The characters that Jeroen was asking about,
    and which Asmus commented on in the context of the STIX font
    encoding, were "proposed" long ago.

    At this point, they are:

    1. Officially approved by the UTC for addition to a future
       version of the standard, and that version of the standard
       has also been designated now as Version 5.1 and is further in
       its release process (which takes considerable time and
       has a number of further checkpoints and milestones to go).
    2. Officially approved by SC2 for balloting in amendments to
       10646, and now past the two technical approval ballots
       in SC2.
    3. Currently in FDAM ballot in ISO, which is a non-technical
       approval ballot at the JTC1 level, allowing no technical
       changes in content.
    What remains true right now is that ITTF hasn't yet published
    Amendment 3 (for 27EC..27ED) or Amendment 4 (for 27CC, 27EE..27EF),
    pending processing after the completion of what will be the
    pro forma FDAM ballotting. So they aren't yet officially
    part of the International Standard.

    And they haven't been published yet by the Unicode Consortium
    as part of a completed Unicode version release, either. That
    won't happen until late March, 2008, by current plans.

    > I don't see how it would hurt to keep things clear: they are now
    > non-Unicode characters, which can be represented in Unicode data by
    > private agreements; if and when a new version of the standard containing
    > them has been approved, they become Unicode characters that should be
    > encoded as indicated, and hence existing data containing them should be
    > recoded. It's after all a straightforward operation, needed for limited
    > amount of data only. Fonts will need similar adjustments.

    This is a little too "letter of the law" for practical

    What you can't do today is formally claim conformance to
    the Unicode Standard, Version 5.1, because it hasn't yet
    been published.

    But if you are rolling out major implementation upgrades --
    and that includes such things as a major font update like the
    STIX fonts -- then you can't wait until March 31, 2008 to
    actually start using the newly added code points.

    I'd wager that *most* major implementers have already started
    to use Unicode 5.1 code points in internal development of
    projected software releases, and some of that is going to
    start leaking out publicly well before the checkered flag
    on March 31.

    This is actually a very familiar drill -- it is the same kind
    of thing that has been going on for years for every Unicode
    major and minor release.

    Of course, anybody is obviously still free to refuse to recognize
    any of the new characters until formal publication of the
    amendments to 10646 and of Version 5.1 of the Unicode Standard.


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