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RE: Single quotes in Info

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: Single quotes in Info
Date: Thu, 29 Jan 2015 10:34:58 -0800 (PST)

> > I would like to see the ability for users to define classes, and to
> > "activate" (enable the use of; turn on) or "deactivate" (turn off) a
> > particular class of equivalences as a whole, including any of the
> > predefined classes.
> This would require modifying the Unicode tables.  They are just large
> char-tables, so someone who knows what they are doing should be able
> to do that.

The point is to let ordinary users define such classes, and use them

> But that's not for the faint at heart

Then fiddling at that level is not the (only) answer.  If changes at
that level are ultimately required, then perhaps a user-friendly layer
can be added above such low-level changes.

> and I don't see why users would
> like to disable or replace portions of those tables.

That's putting it wrong, putting it already in terms of implementation.
Ordinary users would certainly not *want* to "disable or replace portions
of those tables".  That is, they would not want to, and should not need
to, think in terms of such tables.  Whether such tables get changed
under the covers when they want to define a new class of chars should
not be something they need concern themselves with (I hope).

What (some) ordinary users are liable to want to be able to do is define
a class of chars that they can use in place of each other etc., and to
choose among such classes, via Lisp or interactively, enabling/disabling
the equivalences they define.

> I do understand why in some use cases certain equivalences classes
> are inappropriate, but they are inappropriate _as_a_whole_.  Doing
> that for a part of a class doesn't make sense to me.

I did not say anything about enabling some of the equivalences of a
class but not others.  What I suggested was being able to specify a
set of associations as a new, user-level equivalence class, and then
being able to enable/disable that class as a whole.  Whether the
members of that class also belong to a larger, predefined class is
not relevant here. 

> E.g., why would you want to make 2 and ② equivalent, but not 2 and ²?

Why not?  Why not be able to define your own class that includes
2 = ②, 3 = ③, etc., but not 2 = ² etc.?  What you want to consider
equivalent can depend on your particular context/needs.

The fact that there are natural, predefined Unicode equivalences
in general does not mean that only those equivalences make sense for
a given user in a given context.

> So this kind of customization doesn't have to be easy, IMO, and
> it's okay to ask such users to know what they are doing.

I disagree.  But I'm talking user-level and wishlist.  I have nothing
to say about the difficulty of providing what I am suggesting.

I am hoping that it *will* be easy for a user to both (a) define
an equivalence class (set of associations) of chars and (b) enable
or disable the use of that class.  For search and for other purposes.

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