Re: Ways to show Unicode contents on Windows?

From: Christopher Fynn <>
Date: Mon, 15 Jul 2013 13:45:36 +0600

On 15/07/2013, Doug Ewell <> wrote:

> This shows that the problem is not that Windows is unable to display
> arbitrary Unicode text, or inherently cannot support font fallback, but
> that:
> (a) Complete font fallback in Windows is not automatic, and users or
> developers often must supply additional knowledge of which fonts support
> which scripts (like the "Composite Font Mappings" feature in Andrew
> West's BabelPad).
> (b) Some Windows apps apply their own fallback strategy, which may be
> better or worse than the default strategy, depending on the situation.
> For a recent project, I was harshly reintroduced to the way MS Word maps
> fonts. I needed to generate Word documents using the PUA, but even
> though I specified a font that covered all my characters, Word silently
> substituted another font that covered none of them (and did not change
> the name of my selected font on the ribbon). I was forced to use
> OpenOffice and generate .odt documents instead, since OO doesn't
> override my font choices in such a destructive way. This was running
> Office Professional Plus 2013 under Windows 8 Pro, so it has nothing to
> do with outdated versions. For someone who regularly defends MS software
> against its detractors, this was tough to swallow.

 MS Office seems to want to do is apply fonts based on the language
being used - the input "language" being determined by the keyboard or
IME currently selected. When using a custom keyboard (e.g. one created
with MSKLC) or IME MS Office frequently does not accuratly determine
the language and consequently overides your font selection.

In MS Word a work-around is to create a custom character style for
each language/script you use. When defining those styles choose an
appropriate font for the particular language/script - and put the name
of that font in the "Latin text font" "Complex text fonts" and "CJK
fonts" (all 3) boxes on the font tab of the syle definition dialouge.
Apply this style to any text in that prticular script/language.

I've found this to work in most cases - even for PUA characters,
though in some instances I've had to remove paricularly pernicious
system fonts - which isn't easy to do.
Received on Mon Jul 15 2013 - 02:50:47 CDT

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