Re: Unicode 6.2 to Support the Turkish Lira Sign

From: Jukka K. Korpela <>
Date: Tue, 29 May 2012 13:37:15 +0300

2012-05-29 11:43, Asmus Freytag wrote:

> Sovereign countries are free to decree currency symbols,

Everyone and his brother can decree a currency symbol, too, or some
other symbol.

> The simple fact is, the usage scenario for currency symbols is such that
> immediate availability as character code is required by a whole country
> (and its partners in commerce).

It may be true, or valid, but it is neither simple nor a fact. It is a
conclusion drawn from rather abstract premises, not something
immediately observable and objective, i.e. a fact.

“Immediate availability” is an illusion, as I have pointed out. If you
mean that the character, as a coded character, should be immediately
available for implementors to use, then it’s a different thing. Judgment
call, not a fact.

> Kvetching doesn't make a difference, it just reflects badly - especially
> if it comes from anyone whose country happens to have its currency
> "covered".

This is not about currencies; it is about currency symbols. And it’s not
a casual oddity that some symbols like “$” and “£” are “covered.” They
are in Unicode, and mostly available in fonts, and often recognized by
programs and people properly as being in the currency symbol category,
because they have been used such a long time.

Surely it makes sense to acknowledge that some large community is going
to use a new symbol, even in text, and encode it in Unicode. We can just
hope that people realize that this won’t magically make it “work.” It’s
just a small technicality that lets implementors start using an assigned
code point, instead of Private Use codepoints or, worse still,
codepoints assigned to other characters. In software design, this is a
minor detail, effectively the value of one parameter.

So what’s disturbing here is the apparently political move of giving one
particular symbol a high priority in a manner that affects the whole
process. The process of adopting new characters to Unicode may be slow,
but I guess there are reasons behind this. It’s disproportionate to
regard a currency symbol as an emergency case. It sets a questionable

Received on Tue May 29 2012 - 05:40:30 CDT

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