Re: Irish dotless I (was: Languages with letters that always take diacriticals

Date: Thu Mar 18 2004 - 17:33:53 EST

  • Next message: "Re: Irish dotless I (was: Languages with letters that always take diacriticals" scripsit:

    > In this context, and if it's true that a spell checker could, in theory, be
    > programmed to handle parallel encoding conventions, then why shouldn't Irish
    > language "traditionalists" encode the i with a LATIN SMALL LETTER DOTLESS I
    > such as <0131>?

    It could be done, yes, but there's no *point* to it. Similarly,
    the Uncial-style "g" will soon be encoded in Unicode for the sake of
    plain-text documents that distinguish between the two kinds of "g"
    (or the three kinds, as we already have the IPA-style "g" with the
    single hook). That doesn't mean that it makes sense to use this new
    character in writing Irish using an Uncial font.

    The shape of a or g, or the presence or absence of a dot over i, is
    a font distinction that Unicode doesn't need to represent. When the
    distinction becomes a semantic one, as in IPA or Old English/Middle
    English dictionaries or Turkic text respectively, then it makes sense to
    introduce and use additional characters. Otherwise not. Irish has in fact
    only one a, g, and i, and should use the regular Basic Latin versions
    of these.

    You might say, then why not introduce a "seimhiu" character whose glyphic
    representation is either h-following or dot-above? Primarily for Unicode
    structural reasons: Unicode needs to say a character is either combining or

    John Cowan
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    The Linux-nationale / Shall Microsoft outpace,
    We can write better programs / Our CPUs won't stall,
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