Re: Superscript and Subscript Characters in General Use

From: Asmus Freytag <>
Date: Sun, 15 Jan 2017 10:15:33 -0800
On 1/15/2017 8:46 AM, Marcel Schneider wrote:
On Sat, 14 Jan 2017 02:18:01 +0100 (CET), I wrote:
I believe that an outdated typeface, as is actually Times New Roman, is 
inappropriate for the Unicode Mail Archives.
Iʼve been kindly informed off-list that the Archives donʼt specify any font, 
and are viewed in the default font customizable in the browser preferences.

I apologize for this statement of mine.


Contrary to your assertion about fonts elsewhere, the poor rendering of subscripts/superscripts that I reported to you is based on the fact that the characters are missing, but that the glyphs are not laid out as running text.

When viewing with monospaced fonts, the separation between glyphs corresponds to the spacing of the full-size characters. When using formatting (styling) the superscripted text is in a smaller font size, reducing the spacing between characters, so that strings of them look like ordinary text again and not s p a c e d   o u  t.

I'm not going to spend much more time on this discussion. Using code points "against the grain" that is, in contradiction to the way their use was intended when they were encoded means that you are going to run into many issues based on font vendors and implementers expectations on how users would follow the conventions suggested in the Unicode Standard.

Your discussion of the support of the fraction slash (with regular digits) across fonts is potentially more useful -- bringing attention to this issue could bring font vendors to perhaps update earlier fonts to support the correct conventions for 2044 (which incidentally post dated the design of many popular fonts).

In other words, there's no need to "fix" the character encoding, but much need to make sure that what's in the character encoding (and its associated conventions) is actually supported as intended.


Received on Sun Jan 15 2017 - 12:16:59 CST

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