Re: missing characters: combining marks above runs of more than 2 base letters

From: John H. Jenkins <>
Date: Mon, 21 Nov 2011 10:14:56 -0700

Michael Everson 於 2011年11月21日 上午3:37 寫道:

> On 21 Nov 2011, at 07:23, Julian Bradfield wrote:
>> Marking the (usually automatic) elisions is markup for elementary students.
> I can't think of any reason why this shouldn't be achievable in plain text. Many encoded characters exist for paedagogical reasons.

Well, on a theoretical level, the issue is whether or not this is needed for minimal legibility, that is, whether or not the essential meaning of the text can be conveyed without it. Personally, I don't think this is needed for minimal legibility, but that's a judgement call.

On a more pragmatic level, there's the issue of how many people would actually implement this, were it to become part of the standard. This is of pretty marginal utility—we have, after all, managed to go for twenty years encoding Latin texts without it—and it would be very difficult to implement. From a cost/benefit perspective, it's a pretty sure bet that virtually nobody would go to the trouble.

Now, granted, just because almost nobody would implement it, that doesn't mean that it shouldn't be part of the standard. There's a lot in the standard already that is implemented but rarely, if at all. And granted, there are other portions of the standard which are similar enough to this that if you implement them, you may as well implement this, too. Still, this strikes me as being of such very marginal utility that efforts to get it implemented as part of a plain-text standard seem pretty quixotic to me.

(And before anybody accuses me of being overly cynical, I should point out that I'm probably the person putting in the greatest effort to get the Deseret Alphabet to be actually *used*. How quixotic is *that*?)

John H. Jenkins
Received on Mon Nov 21 2011 - 11:22:42 CST

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