Re: Uppercase ß is coming? (U+1E9E)

From: John Hudson (
Date: Fri May 04 2007 - 12:39:25 CST

  • Next message: John Hudson: "Re: Uppercase ß is coming? (U+1E9E)"

    Frank Ellermann wrote:

    > I did, and the number of "capital ß" presented in this memo is zero.
    > If I'd write GROSZES@ESZETT.INVALID on a tombstone the "@" is still
    > an "@" and not a "capital @".

    This is an interesting parallel, because in a typographically sophisticated OpenType font,
    one might find a variant glyph for the @ that is raised to align with all caps settings or
    might even (as in the case of Luc(as) de Groot's Calibri, now the default text font in
    Office 2007) use an uppercase form of A within the @ loop. This, along with other variants
    intended for use in all caps settings, e.g. raised hyphens, dashes and other punctuation,
    is accessed via the OpenType Layout Uppercase Forms <case> feature...

    > Everybody is free
    > to use a slighly larger version of lower case letters or a slightly
    > smaller version of upper case letters for some nice visual effects,
    > but that's no new character.

    ... And what you seem to be saying here is that the 'uppercase' form of eszett, i.e. a
    larger, wider variant designed to harmonise with uppercase letters, could be considered an
    Uppercase Forms variant of U+00DF.

    It could, but I don't think it is the best option for encoding what I agree is a glyph
    variant, i.e. I don't think it is that kind of glyph variant. What you are proposing is to
    use the lowercase eszett in uppercase situations only to change its form. One problem with
    this is that the lowercase eszett character in text can be easily subject to inattentive
    casing, so the desired distinction can be easily lost and the character changed to SS
    using Unicode special casing rules. The other problem is that using the lowercase
    character within an all caps word to provide a plain text level distinction between SS and
    the eszett form requires that all searches intended to find the distinction must be cased.

    It seems to me far more sensible to consider the uppercase eszett as a ligature of the
    uppercase letters, distinguished from the double-S by the use of a suitable control
    character, according to conventions already specified by the Unicode Standard.

    John Hudson

    Tiro Typeworks
    Gulf Islands, BC
    We say our understanding measures how things are,
    and likewise our perception, since that is how we
    find our way around, but in fact these do not measure.
    They are measured.   -- Aristotle, Metaphysics

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