Re: Three modest proposals

From: Mark Davis ☕ (
Date: Wed Apr 06 2011 - 15:35:37 CDT

  • Next message: Michael Everson: "Re: Three modest proposals"

    The decision to add playing cards was not technically optimal; it was the
    price of getting in one compatibility character.

    Any unification of playing cards with tarot is simply a mistake. While they
    are historically related, they don't pass the legibility test, any more than
    Greek and Latin scripts as a whole do, or Latin and Russian do.

    I'll put in a proposal to disunify them. The only text in the standard that
    would need to be changed appears to be:

    A few annotations on, and just for
    one suit: 1F0AB-E

    In Chapter 15

    Playing Cards: U+1F0A0–U+1F0FF
    These characters are used to represent the 52-card deck most commonly used
    today, and
    the 56-card deck used in some European games; the latter includes a Knight
    in addition to
    Jack, Queen, and King. These cards map completely to the Minor Arcana of the
    Tarot from which they derive, and are unified with the latter. Also included
    are a generic
    card back and two Jokers. U+1F0CF playing card black joker is used in one
    of the Japanese cell phone core emoji sets; its presentation may be in color
    and need not be black.


    *— Il meglio è l’inimico del bene —*

    On Tue, Apr 5, 2011 at 18:31, Asmus Freytag <> wrote:

    > On 4/5/2011 5:32 PM, "Martin J. Dürst" wrote:
    >> On 2011/04/05 18:58, Michael Everson wrote:
    >>> On 5 Apr 2011, at 09:40, Michael Everson wrote:
    >>> "Regular" cards (whether European or North American) *are* historically
    >>>> identical with "esoteric" cards. We unified them on this basis.
    > Even when the underlying objects are identical (or "unifiable") doesn't
    > mean it follows that it's appropriate to unify different representations of
    > them on another layer (the writing layer). Characters are an abstraction for
    > the purpose of writing, and not entities that directly represent real-world
    > objects.
    > This fact alone would suffice to convince me that the decision to encode
    > any playing card symbols was carried out on an insufficiently thought
    > through basis and that one is best off abandoning the existing symbols as
    > "mistakes" (or compatibility characters that map to other character set
    > implementers "mistakes".)
    > A./
    > For my part I think the unification is satisfactory enough (and you know
    >>>> how I am about over-unification). However, if you think that this
    >>>> unification was an over-unification, then perhaps we could work together to
    >>>> disunify them.
    >>> To accomplish this we would need 157characters in addition to the ones
    >>> already encoded:
    >>> 14 cards in the suit of Roses
    >>> 14 cards in the suit of Shields
    >> I'm not aware of any Roses or Shields (or Acorns or Bells for that matter)
    >> with more than 9 cards per suit. The cards 2 to 5 are non-existent. Also,
    >> there is no queen (the Knight is taken to be equivalent to the Queen; that
    >> by the way will mess up the 'character/glyph equivalence).
    >> But if they don't exist somewhere else, I'm sure somebody somewhere made
    >> them up :-(.
    >> Regards, Martin.

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