New Public Review on QID emoji via Unicode unicode at
Tue Nov 12 10:41:32 CST 2019

Asmus Freytag wrote as follows.

> While I have a certain understanding for the underlying concerns, it 
> still is the case that this proposal promises to be a bad example of 
> "leading standardization": throwing out a spec in the hopes it may be 
> taken up and take off, instead of something that meets an expressed 
> need of the stakeholders and that they are eagerly awaiting.

I suppose that it could be called "leading standardization" but I think 
that that is a good thing. Unicode has traditionally been locked into 
the past. If a symbol could be found carved in stone years ago than that 
was fine but anything for the future that could possibly become useful 
was a huge insuperable problem.

Yet for me "could possibly become useful" is a good reason for encoding, 
and QID emoji opens up great futuristic possibilities. For me the big 
problem with the proposal at present are the restrictions upon which QID 
items are valid to become encoded as QID emoji. So anything abstract is 
locked out. That to me is an unnecessary restriction, yet it could 
easily be removed. Yet abstract shapes are important in communication.

I regard QID emoji as a research project. The specification may need 
some alterations, maybe it is just the start of a whole new path of 
exploration in communication, much wider than emoji. I am a researcher 
and I try to find what is good in an idea and focus on that and think 
where a new idea can lead, applying critical consideration of ideas, yet 
trying to move forward rather than seizing on problems found as a reason 
for dismissing the whole idea. So find the problems, try to think round 
them, try to go forward. Look for what could be done and if it is good, 
try to do it. Try to go forward rather than quash.

> That, then, finally undermines Unicode's implied guarantee as being 
> the medium for unambiguous interchange. Giving up that guarantee seems 
> a bad bargain.

Many recent emoji encoding proposals seem to delight, as if required, in 
providing multiple meanings for each newly proposed character.

There was a talk at the Unicode and Internationalization Conference a 
few years ago on what are the meanings of emoji. I was not there but 
there is a video available on YouTube.

William Overington

Tuesday 12 November 2019

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