Bit arithmetic on Unicode characters?

Philippe Verdy verdy_p at
Sat Oct 8 11:31:05 CDT 2016

Markup for rotation is highly underdeveloped, and in this case for chess it
has its own semantics, it's not just a presentation feature, possibly meant
for playing on larger boards with more players than 2, and distinguished
just like there's a distinction between white and black, or meant to signal
some dangerous positions or candidate target positions for the next moves.

I also see some additions like florettes, and elephants needed for
traditional Asian variants of the game, plus combined forms (e.g.
tower+horse) which are quite intrigating.
There are also variants rotated 45 degrees.

All those are not just meant for display on the grid of a board but in
discussions about strategies. There are also combining notations added on
top of chess pieces (e.g. numbering pawns that are otherwise identical, but
in plain text you can still use notations with superscript digits or
letters, distinguished clearly from the numbering of grid positions, or by
adding some other punctuation marks).

I still don't see in these images the elephants (or other pieces like
unmovable rocks or rivers, or special pieces added to create handicaps for
one of the player). I've also seen some chess players using special queens
by putting a pawn on top of a nother falt pawn, with more limited movements
than a standard queen. There are also bishops/sorcerers/magicians, eagles,
dragoons, tigers/lions, rats, dogs/foxes, snakes,
spiders, soldiers/archers, canons, walls/fortresses, gold/treasures...
Chess games have a lot of variants with their supporters. Modern movies are
also promoting some variants.

2016-10-08 17:24 GMT+02:00 Ken Shirriff <ken.shirriff at>:

> Looking at the image, the idea of the proposal is to include chess piece
> symbols in all four 90° rotations? Wouldn't it be better to do this in
> markup than in Unicode? I fear a combinatorial explosion if Unicode starts
> including all the possible orientations of characters. (Maybe there's a
> good reason to do this for chess; I'm just going off the image
> <>
> .)
> Ken
> On Fri, Oct 7, 2016 at 9:36 PM, Garth Wallace <gwalla at> wrote:
>> Sorry about the blank reply. Itchy trigger finger.
>> On Thu, Oct 6, 2016 at 2:28 PM, Ken Whistler <kenwhistler at> wrote:
>>> On 10/6/2016 12:44 PM, Garth Wallace wrote:
>>> Some representatives of the WFCC have proposed alternate arrangements
>>> that assume there will be a need for bitwise operations to covert between
>>> the existing chess symbols in the Miscellaneous Symbols block and related
>>> symbols in the new block. I don't see the need but maybe I'm missing
>>> something.
>>> I don't think you are missing anything. Bitwise operations would
>>> certainly *not* be needed in a case like this. Small lookup and mapping
>>> tables would suffice.
>>> --Ken
>> Thank you.
>> Just to be clear, this is the proposed allocation as it stands:
>> d%20characters_zps81m0frvl.png
>> That arrangement is the result of some discussion with a representative
>> of the WFCC.
>> And here are the alternatives that another WFCC representative recently
>> proposed and that prompted my question:
>> bums/ss7/Garth_Wallace/wfcc%20alternatives_zpstdvfgcf2.png
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