From: Philippe Verdy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Sun Jan 11 2009 - 12:05:01 CST
Michael D'Errico wrote:
> Michael Everson wrote:
> > Do NOT think that encoding even ONE of the ten flags
> proposed will not
> > lead to a huge number of requests for additional characters. And do
> > NOT think that those requests will not be reasonable.
> Flags are actually a perfect example that could use the
> method I've been talking about. If you had FLAG_A through
> FLAG_Z you could specify any and all country flags with two
> code points, e.g. FLAG_C FLAG_A for the Canadian flag.
Your example is the perfect one to demonstrate that these pseudo-characters
should NOT be encoded at all!
With your logic it's even simpler to write "flag-CA.svg" (using standard
latin letters and punctuation for this name) and let an upper-layer protocol
(HTML or other) change this string into an actual colorful image (animated
or not, from a collection of graphics depending on user preferences, just
like preferences with fonts).
In a plain-text only document 'witrhout any upper-layer protocol) there is
absolutely no way to transport or assume the features needed for flags in a
encoded character. The only thing you can do is to give a distinctive name
of an image using some conventional syntax, or by tweaking your text to
include some wellknown upper-layer protocol (like HTML or Wiki syntax or
Bbcode in online forums), based on some patterns of delimiting punctuation.
Flags are colored, their colors are extremely important and part of their
design and needed for their distinction (look at the number of tricolor
flags), unlike their animation (which is just an effect of style). The
mandatory colors (and the animation) are disqualifying flags as being encodd
as plain-text characters. They are not logograms, and they are also not
politically neutral (thieeir usage is also regulated by laws tht may
prohibit some of them, just like they can prohibit some texts but will not
prohibit individual characters).
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