Re: Suggestion for new dingbats/symbols

From: David Starner <>
Date: Wed, 29 May 2013 12:34:31 -0700

On Wed, May 29, 2013 at 1:39 AM, Andreas Stötzner <> wrote:
> Am 29.05.2013 um 01:06 schrieb David Starner:
> > A lot of that is not exactly plain text. …
> Many are and that is easily to testify.

Airport signs are not plain text, by any definition.

> Come on, don’t be more catholic than the pope.

That is very scholarly of you. I will point out that's exactly what I
was saying, that the problems aren't scholarly ones, they're questions
of goals.

>> And pictograms aren't a closed set.
> Of course not. But again, this is not a convincing case against doing it.
> Emoji aren’t closed sets either. I can’t remember any Unicode rule that only
> “closed sets” are eligible.
> This is not the point.

If you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Open sets are
problematic for Unicode because any particular version of Unicode is a
closed set, and new characters are added in a process that takes
years. If you have a set of symbols, and 3 out of the 5 are in
Unicode, you're better off encoding all of them as vector graphics,
instead of encoding three of them in text and two in graphics and
trying to get the looks to match up.

> > It's not possible to find a set of
> > sport pictograms that will serve well for communication needs of the
> > kind in the future. The 2014 Olympics are adding 12 new events. The
> > 2020 Olympics is considering 6 new sports, "baseball, karate, roller
> > sports, softball, sports climbing, squash, wakeboard and wushu".
> And yet there is still football, swimming, running, rowing, basketball, …
> all very useful.
> Would you never consider these just because other sorts are to be expected
> in the future?

That's moving the goal posts. We're going from finding "a set of sport
pictograms that will serve well for communication needs of the kind in
the future" to grabbing a set that will work today... and in practice
not even today, unless the Unicode consortium scurries to keep up with
whatever the Olympics is doing several years in the future, to give
everyone lead time to support the new characters.

>> The Wingdings and Emoji were both sets that had proven plain text use
>> as consistent sets.
> No this is not true and you possibly know that.

You think somewhere some part of those sets weren't used? Availability
is a huge factor in use. As a group, it's pretty clear they were being
used. Individually, it's hard to believe that no internal Word
document anywhere can be found that uses any particular Wingdings
character, and I bet even webusage is pretty easy to find.

Kie ekzistas vivo, ekzistas espero.
Received on Wed May 29 2013 - 14:36:21 CDT

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