From: Murray Sargent (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu Apr 14 2011 - 11:02:48 CDT
Doug commented: 'I don't follow this. Asmus' point is that superscript can be applied, not only to any arbitrary character that can be used in a math expression, but also at any arbitrary level of nesting. After Unicode has finished adding superscript versions of every imaginable math character, including all of the math alphanumerics, it would then have to add second-level, third-level, etc. versions of every character, so that one could enter "a to the b to the c to the (d times square root of 2)" in plain text. And don't forget subscripts of superscripts, and vice versa.'
Actually both TeX and Microsoft Office applications only have three script sizes: text, script, and scriptscript. So to handle math subscripts and superscripts, Unicode would only have to duplicate the current text-size encoding for the script and scriptscript sizes, which would only be adding about 200000 characters minus a few script sized characters that are already encoded. Needless-to-say, Doug's and Asmus's conclusions still apply :-) Probably the closest one can come to encoding math in Unicode plain text is given in Unicode Technical Note #28.
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