Re: Custom fonts (was: Tolkien wanta-be)

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Mon Mar 17 2003 - 11:46:49 EST

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    Chris Jacobs <c dot t dot m dot jacobs at hccnet dot nl> wrote:

    >>> Then on my system U+E000 in plaintext should indeed display an apple
    >>> symbol and U+E100 a banana symbol.
    >>> But if there are more fonts with an apple symbol U+E000 does not
    >>> specify the font to use.
    >> This isn't conformant and won't work.
    > Which rule in The Unicode Standard Version 3.0 exactly is this not
    > conformant with?

    I think Conformance Requirement C10, "Modification," applies to this
    case. C10 states:

    "A process shall make no change in a valid coded character
    representation other than the possible replacement of character
    sequences by their canonical-equivalent sequences, if that process
    purports not to modify the interpretation of that coded character

    If you are claiming to follow a PUA interpretation in which U+E000 is an
    apple and U+E100 is a banana, then interpreting U+E100 as an apple is an
    unadvertised modification -- unless you contend that APPLE and BANANA
    are canonical equivalents!

    Even if C10 doesn't apply, even if there is no conformance requirement
    prohibiting this kind of offset-shifting scheme, what is the benefit?
    As I said before, you have no way of knowing which users have installed
    your chosen font at which offset (assuming they could even figure out
    what they were supposed to do or what a PUA was). You might as well go
    with custom ASCII-hacked fonts and leave Unicode out of this altogether;
    at least your apple symbol will always appear at 0xE5 or whatever.

    -Doug Ewell
     Fullerton, California

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