Re: U+25CA LOZENGE - why is it in the "Mac OS Roman" character set (and therefore widespread in current fonts)?

From: Steven Atreju <>
Date: Wed, 15 Aug 2012 12:31:27 +0200

On Tue, Aug 14, 2012 at 12:48 PM, Karl Pentzlin
<> wrote:
> Am Montag, 13. August 2012 um 20:53 schrieb Hans Aberg:
> HA> The German WP mentions that in the context of the now
> HA> discontinued Bildschirmtext, it was called "Raute":
> HA>
> HA>
> HA> But otherwise, "Raute" is the same as English "lozenge":
> HA>
> In fact, I have heavily edited these Wikipedia articles in the last days,
> Before, they show a mess of "Doppelkreuz", "Raute", and "Nummernzeichen"

Exzellent: ein Mi-ß-ssstand weniger!
(Roughly: with Sisyphus on a list!)

> [.]
> Now, after discussing this with several people, I learned that this
> scheme was too academic, as in fact everybody seems to call the "#"
> "Raute". The word "Raute" otherwise is unused in colloquial German.

I'm not everybody. Uff.

> You learn in math lessons that there is a geometric form called
> "Rhombus" (lozenge) which also can be called "Raute", but in the class

Talking about the german school system is like opening a can of worms,

> "Rhombus" is the preferred term. "Raute" also is the preferred term in

and teachers really need some »Feedback«. But even if an additional
study of psychology would be required to become teacher, it would most
likely be treated as an additional "learning climax" only.
Or philosophy, just the same.

> heraldics, but used by the general public only when referring to the
> pattern of the Bavarian flag. (Besides, "Raute" is used in the name

(I didn't know that at all, but maybe i just didn't understand enough bavarian?)

> of some herbs, like Ruta graveolens, but also only by specialists.)
> Thus, when the "#" came as a new character to the general public
> with the keypad telephone in the 1970s, together with a name "Raute"
> which sounds not unknown and not really wrong, thus it got its way
> into the general public together with the "#" (which, as said, was
> formerly not used in Germany).

I like your term "which sounds not unknown" very much indeed.
But i think it "came up" in the eighties for the public at large, i.e., the
raging current which "make a mountain out of a molehill".
And it was *plain terror* because Btx was "doomed to succeed".
(Which it didn't, the "potato-trick" didn't work.
Why, oh why? I don't understand, too.)

> "Raute" is e.g. used by customer services which you call when you have
> a question regarding your mobile phone, and you are told to press the
> lower right key on your telephone keypad.

> On the other hand, as far as I know now (and a DIN officer confirmed
> me this), there is no German standard which uses the term "Raute".

But Raute is plain wrong! Should the usual »aufwändige Albträume«
(roughly: jmmmense efffords) be globbered with it?
I wouldn't like that, and it follows why..

> Thus, I probably will use the term "Doppelkreuz" but have to remark
> that I address the character commonly called "Raute". As the

Oh, please do so. I remember Klaus von Dohnanyi saying »Plauderstübchen«
when Christiansen was about to talk about "Chatrooms", and it saved a sunday
and is still remembered, and positively.


Thank you very much.

> - Karl

Received on Wed Aug 15 2012 - 05:39:25 CDT

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