Re: ASCII and Unicode lifespan

From: James Kass (
Date: Fri May 20 2005 - 05:27:48 CDT

  • Next message: Radovan Garabik: "Re: ASCII and Unicode lifespan"

    "Alexander Kh." wrote,

    > > If Microsoft disappeared tomorrow, what Mark said would still apply to
    > > everybody else.
    > True, some other monopolist will take the flag of supporting Unicode.

    Since Unicode is the World's standard for text encoding, corporate ideology
    is irrelevant. Unicode isn't discriminatory -- it works for monopolists,
    capitalists, socialists, communists, republicans, libertarians, whigs and tories.
    Even democrats and bolsheviks.

    > I wonder
    > if Open Source community will come up with some coding system which will take
    > into account the mistakes of Unicode.

    The Open Source community embraces Unicode.

    Here's one modest example:

    (Here's another page for the same application in English:)

    Instead of wondering if the open source communities would devise
    some non-standard way of encoding text, you might want to do
    a Google search on: open source Unicode. Such a search generates
    over a million hits, perhaps because Unicode is the World's standard
    for encoding text.

    > I have to deal with Koi-8, win-1251, and use them a lot on my websites.

    No, you don't. You could simply use Unicode, since it's the World's
    standard for text encoding. What's holding you back?

    > Many developers are reluctant to switching to Unicode, for one or another
    > reason. One of the reasons is poor support by databases, computer languages
    > and web browsers.

    As long as we're theorizing about all those many developers, is it possible
    that they are reluctant because they don't want to upgrade their systems,
    preferring to remain with their trusty TRS-80s and PC jrs?

    Abandon or adapt applications which don't support Unicode. Modern web
    browsers support Unicode. ASCII-based computer languages used for
    programming aren't really germane here.

    > I now met new difficulties: Unicode has lots of scripts,
    > yes, but they are incomplete, ...

    If you have evidence of anything missing, make a proposal through proper

    > ...messy, unreliable, and require a lot of
    > figuring out what the order of that particular alphabet is,

    Are you familiar with the Unicode Collation Algorithm?

    Quoting from:

    "However, collation is not uniform; it varies according
    to language and culture: Germans, French and Swedes
    sort the same characters differently. It may also vary
    by specific application: even within the same language,
    dictionaries may sort differently than phonebooks or
    book indices."

    Before calling a standard messy and unreliable, you might want to
    take the time to familiarize yourself with it.

    > what letters are
    > to be considered as meaningful and what letters are pure fantasy.

    So far, Unicode hasn't encoded any fantasy scripts.

    > So far I
    > don't see how Unicode will solve my problem of internationalization.

    Is it possible that you are being shortsighted in this regard?

    (By the way, did I remember to mention that Unicode is the World's
    standard for encoding text?)

    Best regards,

    James Kass

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