From: Ernest Cline (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Sat Mar 06 2004 - 14:10:48 EST
> [Original Message]
> From: Peter Kirk <email@example.com>
> I don't think my words justify the point you are trying to make with
> them. My hypothetical other dictionary would have its own community
> of users, largely distinct from the communities of users of the
> dictionaries using the ligatures under discussion.
By that level of argument, one could argue for the inclusion of the Klingon
script in Unicode. The problem is not that the character in question is not
found in printed matter that people make use of, but that like the Klingon
script, derivative works are not written using the proposed character.
If an example of such a derivative work can be cited, that would
constitute sufficient evidence of a user community that I would
withdraw my objections.
> >That argument not only convinced me against the unification
> >I proposed, it convinces me that this character truly belongs as
> >a private use character. It has no well defined semantics.
> >(H.6 Point 8) and no evidence that it is widespread. (H.6 Point 14).
> Your reasoning is flawed because you seem to assume that a character
> to be encoded must meet ALL of the criteria in the list in Annex H.6. But
> the text does not state that; rather this is a list of "Some criteria
> that strengthen the case for encoding".
No not at all, but I do expect that it will not actively contradict those
It was easier to express my case in terms of how it contradicted
H.6 that in how it met H.7 For example, the lack of widespread use
could also be expressed by the final statement in H.7 "criteria that
weaken", i.e.: "there is not enough evidence for its usage or its user
community" but that is not assigned a bulleted point in the annex.
That the character is used is not in question, but not even to the
same extent that the Klingon script is used. No evidence that
derivative works using this character has been presented.
The only likely derivative works that I would expect to even
possibly use such a character would be a book about dictionaries,
and even there, I would find it far more likely that such presentation
would be graphical (i.e., a picture of a portion of the dictionary
showing the use of that character) than something that would be
used in the text itself.
> Anyway, the character "has well defined user community / usage", the
> users of the dictionary in question. It is not clear that "user" implies
> those who write the character, or only those who read it. Many
> historical characters have been accepted for Unicode which are not
> regularly written, except in copying old texts, but are still regularly
> The character also has well-defined semantics, indeed they are
> explicitly defined in the dictionary. The only generally applicable test
> which the character fails is that of being widespread; but it is
> actually much more widespread than some characters recently (and
> correctly) accepted for Unicode. But characters are not expected to meet
> all these criteria.
But without referring to that definition within that dictionary, a reader,
even a reader who is well versed in dictionary usages would not
know what the proposed character means in that text. That is why
I said it does not have well defined semantics.
As for being widespread, the way to judge that in my opinion is not
in absolute terms, but in relative terms. I.e., within the intended
community of use, does the character see widespread use.
Within the community of dictionary publishers this is not a
widespread character. Nor is it within the community of dictionary
readers. I don't think the community of readers of a particular
dictionary is an appropriate choice of community. By that
criterion, the readers of the materials of The Klingon Language
Institute constitute a appropriate choice of community.
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