Re: wikipedia unicode font.

From: Michael Everson (
Date: Fri Jul 04 2008 - 15:53:27 CDT

  • Next message: Doug Ewell: "Re: UTF-16 clarification needed"

    At 14:28 -0600 2008-07-04, Doug Ewell wrote:
    >Ngwe Tun quoted the Myanmar Times, which evidently doesn't have a
    >lot of on-staff experts in character encoding:
    >>"The new Unicode font not only includes the Myanmar language, but
    >>also other ethnic languages that are accepted by Unicode Consortium.
    >Unicode encodes characters that are used for writing languages. It
    >does not "accept" languages.

    Be fair, Doug. You don't speak Burmese. They mean, of course,
    "characters that support Burmese and also a number of minority
    languages in the Union of Myanmar".

    >>At present, Shan, Mon and Kayin font types will be included in this
    >>Unicode font," he said.
    >For clarity, Unicode also does not specify, produce, or approve fonts.

    The article refers to a font which is being developed that supports
    Unicode 5.1 characters.

    >>"We could complete the development of the font by the last week of
    >>August when we get confirmation from the Unicode Consortium's
    >>meeting to be held in Hong Kong at that time," Ko Htoo Myint Naung
    >The Unicode Web page doesn't show any meetings in Hong Kong in
    >August. There is a WG2 meeting scheduled for October in Hong Kong.
    >Such a meeting might involve discussion of the 18 Myanmar characters
    >still remaining in the Pipeline.

    The meeting is, as you say, in October, and Htoo Myint Naung is,
    prudently, awaiting the results of PDAM 6.2 before proceeding with
    early implementation.

    >>The present font used in the Myanmar version of Wikipedia is
    >>Padauk, which was written according to the Unicode 4.1 standard,
    >Which means roughly that it supports only those characters encoded
    >as of Unicode 4.1 (March 2005), and not the ones encoded since then.
    >(But see below.)

    The Myanmar Wikipedia is a mess, of course, because of the plethora
    of Unicode and pseudo-Unicode fonts out there.

    >>I got some question after reading. To clarify the truth as in.
    >>1) Had Unicode published or released representation of Mon, Shan
    >>and Karen encoding specification document like UTN#11?

    There is no UTN, but there are now Mon, Shan, and Karen characters encoded.

    >If it's not listed in the "Unicode Technical Notes" page, there is
    >no UTN on this. You might check with the authors of UTN #11 to see
    >if they would consider updating their paper to add a discussion of
    >these additional languages written with the Myanmar script.

    Far as I know there aren't major issues involving the new characters.

    >>2) Will Unicode Consortium meeting decide Fonts for Burmese, Shan,
    >>Mon and Karen?
    >Unicode does not "decide" fonts. They encode characters, whose
    >glyphs may subsequently be added to fonts.

    Yes, I don't know what Ngwe Tun is asking here.

    >>3) Are there any practice for setting default font in other
    >>language wikipedia? (it's out of question for Unicode Mailing List)
    >It is. Having said that, Wikipedia (like many Web sites) uses a
    >stylesheet to determine the display font. Since I don't have
    >Paduak, when I visit the Myanmar Wikipedia page, I see it in
    >Code2000. You would have to tell your browser to ignore the fonts
    >specified by the stylesheet and use yours instead, which often
    >doesn't turn out as well as hoped.

    I have been talking to Jimmy Wales about helping to sort out the
    Myanmar Wikipedia, and I agree that this list is not the forum for
    discussion about it.

    Michael Everson *

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