SW and Unicode

Dan Parvaz dparvaz at MAC.COM
Sun Jun 22 03:55:46 UTC 2003

> Our first project, however, will be working with Valerie and others on
> the process of getting SignWriting into Unicode and dealing with
> rendering issues for Signwriting in Unicode.

I keep hearing this idea thrown around, so here's where I run aground
when I think about it. Please help me out.

Since Unicode is a 2-byte code for representing linear text (i.e., all
rotations, placements, etc. are to handled algorithmically), I'm not
sure there is any provision within Unicode for representing SignWriting
at any level beyond basic glyphs. AFAIK, there are no native mechanisms
for placement on a grid, rotation, etc. And if there were, all that
would have to converted to a some sort of scale relative to the font
size of the glyphs, which would mean some sort of floating-point
representation (IEEE?). I'm willing to bet that SWML is probably the
best vehicle for representing the whole shebang; furthermore, it
probably ought to be one of the formats that SWJava can handle without
any external conversion (i.e., it ought to work within "Save As...").

What did you and yours have in mind?


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