RE: Courtyard Codes and the Private Use Area

From: Marco Cimarosti (
Date: Mon May 27 2002 - 08:59:59 EDT

William Overington wrote:
> Response to the comments of Mr Curtis Clark.
> > To say that Unicode
> does not provide
> the basis for <em>markup</em> is the same as saying that
> Unicode does not
> provide the basis for English or C++.
> Well, I feel that it is not the same thing at all. If a
> document with an English poem has a U+0045 in it, then
> it is displayed as letter E every time, in accordance
> with the Unicode specification. If a file of markup has
> a U+0045 in it, then maybe it is displayed as a letter E in
> accordance with the Unicode specification, or maybe it is
> used to signal something else, something that is not in
> the Unicode specification.

Actually, that something is very clearly stated in the Unicode
specification, more precisely in section 2.2 of TUS 3.0 (page 15), where
plain text and rich text are defined:

"Plain text is a pure sequence of character codes; plain Unicode-encode text
is therefore a sequence of Unicode character codes. In contrast, fancy text,
also known as rich text, is any text representation consisting of plain text
plus added information such as language identifier, font size, color,
hypertext links, and so on. [...]"

Later on, it adds:

"The simplicity of plain text gives it a natural role as a major structural
element of fancy text. SGML, HTML, XML, TeX are examples of fancy text fully
represented as plain text streams, interspersing plain text data with
sequences of characters that represents the additional data structures.

Therefore, your Courtyard Code is just another instance of rich text ("plain
text plus [...] font size, color"), of the kind which is "fully represented
as plain text streams".

You just begot a new cousin for XML and TeX.

Whereas XML or TeX represent markup tags by giving a special interpretation
to some punctuation or mathematics characters in the "ASCII" range, Farmyard
Code represents markup tags by giving a special interpretation to some
characters in the "PUA" range.

This is why everybody is keeping telling you that the discussion of
Courtyard Codes (or XML, or TeX, or any other markup system) is off-topic on
this mailing list.

It is also the reason why most people are not interested in your
"invention": because they feel that you have reinvented the wheel and insist
in calling it something else (e.g. "axial rotating support").

Sorry if this message will sound rude to you: I am absolutely not implying
that your idea cannot work, or that it is not a legal usage of Unicode. If
you want to do it, go for it. But don't expect much interest from people on
this mailing list: we all joined here to learn about Unicode; if we had
different interests, we would have joined a mailing list about
do-it-yourself markup systems.

_ Marco

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