Unicode is not for you

Session 7

Sunday, 3 October 2021

11:30 AM CST – 12:30 PM CST




This workshop is created to challenge how you misunderstand the ubiquitous ‚"Unicode" thing as a type designer or font developer, and to help you rebuild your mindset about how glyphs and fonts are supposed to be (very indirectly) built upon the Unicode Standard. We will pretend to work on a multilingual font project from ground up, and observe what misunderstandings we commonly run into at each step, then try to analyze the problems with appropriate understandings about the Unicode and OpenType Layout technologies, and also see how some work-in-progress projects may radically change our font project management and workflows. The name of this workshop, "Unicode is not for you‚" is not just a gimmick. The Unicode Standard, as a general-purpose solution for digital text exchange, is really not created directly for font folks. By living in the delusion of being capable of directly consuming the Unicode Standard, we're leaving critical and massive tasks in the industry neglected, and making our own professional lives miserable whenever a slightly sophisticated multilingual problem shows up. Gotta change that.

  • Liang Hai (梁海)

    The Netherlands

    Liang Hai (梁海) is a multilingual font technologist and the resident Unicode guy at Typotheque. Apart from his day job, he participates regularly in various Unicode meetings, in order to help developers and users of the Unicode Standard and the OpenType Specification better understand complex scripts. He goes by his surname Liang [ljɑŋ], unless you speak Chinese.

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