Plain text (was: Re: High dot/dot above punctuation?)

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Wed Jul 28 2010 - 23:32:05 CDT

  • Next message: karl williamson: "Re: Reasonable to propose stability policy on numeric type = decimal"

    Murray Sargent <murrays at exchange dot microsoft dot com> wrote:

    > It's worth remembering that plain text is a format that was introduced
    > due to the limitations of early computers. Books have always been
    > rendered with at least some degree of rich text. And due to the
    > complexity of Unicode, even Unicode plain text often needs to be
    > rendered with more than one font.

    I disagree with this assessment of plain text. When you consider the
    basic equivalence of the "same" text written in longhand by different
    people, typed on a typewriter, finger-painted by a child, spray-painted
    through a stencil, etc., it's clear that the "sameness" is an attribute
    of the underlying plain text. None of these examples has anything to do
    with computers, old or new.

    I do agree that rich text has existed for a long time, possibly as long
    as plain text (though I doubt that, when you consider really early
    writing technologies like palm leaves), but I don't think that refutes
    the independent existence of plain text. And I don't think the need to
    use more than one font to render some Unicode text implies it isn't
    plain text. I think that has more to do with aesthetics (a rich-text
    concept) and technical limits on font size.

    Doug Ewell | Thornton, Colorado, USA |
    RFC 5645, 4645, UTN #14 | ietf-languages @ is dot gd slash 2kf0s ­

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jul 28 2010 - 23:36:42 CDT