From: John Dlugosz (JDlugosz@tradestation.com)
Date: Wed Jun 09 2010 - 11:16:52 CDT
> Were these the same code points it would be pretty hard to read,
> we know from handwriting that these characters do look different.
> Usually fixed-width fonts that programmers tend to use will make these
> glyphs distinguishable, because they have to be.
> Even worse, some cursive/"handwriting" fonts style digits and the
> respective confusable letters differently. You couldn't do this if they
> were encoded as the same character without having to have contextual
> glyphs ready and some text engine that supports it (and even then you
> couldn't type a zero in a word, because it would be a capital O).
> Usually the styles for characters will differ from digits because
> are not written as a whole string without breaks, whereas characters
> usually are. Sure, you could still have the same glyph and make it look
> good, but it wouldn't look natural, nor would it be practical.
> So I don't think that we _could do without_ those characters having
> different code points today. Even back then it must have seemed like a
> hack to type a lowercase L instead of a 1.
> I think this a neat example of why Unicode encodes the character's
> abstract identity rather than it's shape. That's why we have Han
> unification after all, because some characters have the same abstract
> identity which was preserved, while others, such as our digits do not
> share identities with Latin characters.
That reads like an argument _for_ having separate encoding for hex digits. Then I could use those rather than markup to make hex numbers look good in the surrounding text. What argument applies to 0 that doesn't apply to A ?
(you can stop reading now)
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