What is Unicode?
easyGUI Unicode includes all functionality of easyGUI Color, and adds support for Unicode characters (16 bit character codes), opening up for the use of virtually all languages in the world, including Asian and Middle East languages.
So what is Unicode? From the earliest days of computers character coding for text strings used the ASCII standard, utilizing 7 bits per character for coding. There were also other standards, but ASCII was the most widely accepted. Later ASCII character handling was expanded to 8 bits, with various schemes for using the additional code space. MS-DOS is an example of 8 bit ASCII coding, using various code pages for different character sets. When Windows was introduced in the 1990'es the ANSI standard was used, still with 8 bit character coding. For the lower 128 character codes most character are identical between ASCII and ANSI. For the higher character codes ANSI also uses code pages, to cover various languages, but ANSI as defined in easyGUI only refers to code page 1252 (West European Latin). In order to avoid using code pages all together, and to make it possible to use large character count languages, like e.g. Chinese, it is necessary to move to 16 bit character codes. There are several standards for handling 16 bit character codes, but the most universally adopted is Unicode. Newer versions of Windows, and many associated applications, use Unicode character coding exclusively. easyGUI Unicode supports the full 16 bit character coding space. Extensions to the Unicode standard uses 32 bit character codes - these extended character pages are not supported by easyGUI. More info about the Unicode standard can be found at the Unicode Consortium web page at www.unicode.org.
Currently the Unicode fonts supplied with easyGUI Unicode covers these languages:
- Western languages
- Hiragana (Japan)
- Katakana (Japan)
- Kanji (Japan)
- Simplified Chinese
- Hangul (Korea)
- Cyrillic (Russia)
- Hebrew (Israel)
Kanji, Simplified Chinese and Hangul are large character sets, each containing thousands of characters.
The standard ANSI character set, which is also part of all Unicode fonts, covers most western style languages.
More character sets are continuously added. Special requests are welcomed, we will then make offers on creating the needed character sets.