Re: character names (questions)

From: Alain LaBonté  (
Date: Thu Apr 06 2000 - 17:27:28 EDT

À 10:58 2000-04-06 -0800, Mark Davis a écrit:
>I think the question was referring to a different problem, not the human
>language of the names.

[Alain] I knew very well... However the oppotunity was too good and I
could not resist divert the issue and answer the question with a different
background, to pass the message...

I agree with you that "character name" is an embarrassing term to refer to
UCS characters which are in reality codepoints not necessarily representing
complete typographical characters. This terminology is embarassing indeed.
But it could have been worse.

That sais the need for naming using the user's language is an issue as well
that many technicians forget, even for those entities.


Alain LaBonté
>It was the distinction between "characters" and "code points". It is
>important for us to be clear about the difference, since they are
>definitely *not* one-to-one:
>- one abstract character can be represented by two different codepoints,
>- or by a sequence of codepoints;
>- and one codepoint can represent multiple characters.
>(see for
>more information).
>So properly speaking, they should be "codepoint names", although loosely
>speaking we can refer to them as "character names".
>The language
>"Alain LaBonté " wrote:
> > À 00:10 2000-04-06 -0800, Viranga Ratnaike a écrit:
> > > (4) why are they called "character names" and not "code point
> > > names"?
> >
> > [Alain] Because names are for humans, and names are related mainly to what
> > one sees on paper.
> >
> > Btw there are normative character names in French too. Nothing precludes to
> > name characters in any other lannguage as it has always be done in the
> past.
> >
> > The only language-independent way to refer to characters is not by using
> > long character names, but rather by UCS ids (U+xxxx). It is more efficient,
> > and machines do not need names that long to exchange information on
> > characters. If it is rather for humans, then a good user interface needs
> > present the info in the user's language. See also ISO/IEC 14755 (Input
> > methods to enter UCS characters) for principles of user interface character
> > name feedback.
> >
> > Alain LaBonté
> > Québec
> >
> >
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