unicode / emoji in documentation (was Re: Common situations where a bug isn't real)

Neal McBurnett neal at bcn.boulder.co.us
Wed Jun 18 17:00:25 UTC 2014

On Wed, Jun 18, 2014 at 11:00:18AM -0500, Adolfo Jayme Barrientos wrote:
> > Can someone clarify the support situation for at least these characters?  Does it work for me
> > in Ubuntu Precise 12.04 using chrome because I have the font, and Chrome knows how to
> > use the font?  Or is Chrome using some other approach to get them to work?
> I would say it’s because you have the font. Ubuntu doesn’t display
> emojis out-of-the-box because it has no fonts supporting those
> characters.
> We could ship Noto Color Emoji (an open source font from Android), as
> our FreeType/HarfBuzz stack is recent enough (in 14.04) so it supports
> color fonts, but I’m not sure about the support in Chrome. Firefox
> must support it, as Noto Color Emoji is included in Firefox OS.
> -- 
> Adolfo

Wow - I see that I hadn't carefully looked at the wikipedia page I linked to.


It seems that the popularity of "texting" has led to a redefinition in many influential quarters of what text is.  I'm now thinking that at least some emoji are downright evil (from a font perspective) - in color and animated!  That makes this thread even more esoteric than I thought, though perhaps still of interest to documentation folks, who are perhaps more interested in fonts and characters than most.

Some more information is here, about how on Macs, colored emoji even show up in the Terminal app, even though it still seems that Unicode does not specify what color a character can show up in.

 Color in the Unicode standard? - Stack Overflow

Quoting from a Unicode FAQ:


 Some of the characters from the core emoji sets have names that include a color term, for example, BLUE HEART or ORANGE BOOK. These color terms in the names do not imply any requirement about how a character must be presented; they are intended only to help identify the corresponding character in the core emoji sets.

What do apps need to do to get color emoji via FreeType/HarfBuzz?

Does Ubuntu support animated emoji anywhere?

I see I've been missing the debate for a while.  E.g. from 2011:

 Please Don't Use Emoji - Kirsle.net

Is this as bad as I'm thinking for interoperability in general, for lots more than Ubuntu documentation?


Neal McBurnett                 http://neal.mcburnett.org/

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