[Libreoffice] Word doesn't see symbols - NEW PROBLEM

Dennis E. Hamilton dennis.hamilton at acm.org
Fri May 27 13:52:30 PDT 2011

There's a new problem.  I checked around for middle dots, centered dots, etc.

The SAFE one is U+22C5, the Middle Dot in the extensive Unicode block on Mathematical Operators, from U+2200 to U+22FF.

The dots that I saw in OpenSymbol are these: U+E146, U+E468, U+E466, U+E58D, and U+E584.  My copy of the Unicode Standard 4.0 says that these are all PRIVATE USE SYMBOLS.   This Private Use Area has existed since at least Unicode 3.2 and is unchanged in Unicode 6.0.  See <http://www.unicode.org/charts/>.

"These areas will never be defined by the Unicode Standard.  These code points can be freely used for characters of any purpose, but successful interchange requires an agreement between sender and receiver on their interpretation."  

Furthermore, the codes extending upward from U+E000 are intended for END-USER assignment and the codes extending downward from U+F8FF are intended for CORPORATE USE (including vendors, platform providers, etc.), the idea that the chance of collision is reduced thereby.   This is only a suggested convention, however.

These depend on private agreements for having matching fonts or even being used for visible characters.  Something tells me you'll be hard-pressed to find these in fonts on Windows unless you can send the OpenSymbol font to the recipient.  

I was aware that private use symbols were employed in some Sun fonts found in OO.o documents, because the ODF specifications have some of them as bullets.  But I didn't realize that someone had the chutzpah to call that an "OpenSymbol" set.  Apparently, OpenSymbol is regarded by many as unique to OpenOffice.org and it is thought to depend on them for bullets.

It looks like the need for OpenSymbol has diminished as more mathematical symbols and special characters have been included in Unicode.  Some of them are similar to defined Unicode characters, but the seemingly duplicative OpenSymbol characters seem to have different metrics for spacing and alignment in some cases.

My recommendation is to use a defined Unicode character (and a font that supports it) in preference to the same OpenSymbol character whenever possible.

 - Dennis

-----Original Message-----
From: libreoffice-bounces+dennis.hamilton=acm.org at lists.freedesktop.org [mailto:libreoffice-bounces+dennis.hamilton=acm.org at lists.freedesktop.org] On Behalf Of Dennis E. Hamilton
Sent: Friday, May 27, 2011 09:43
To: 'Deve'; libreoffice at lists.freedesktop.org
Cc: LOffice Users List
Subject: Re: [Libreoffice] Word doesn't see symbols

I don't know which is CDOT in OpenSymbol (it looks like a vertically-centered dot, but it appears attached to the "b" in the JPG and there are at least six symbols that look like it in OpenSymbol), so I couldn't check this but ...

Do you have Lucida Sans Unicode on your installation of Writer?  It may work better to choose your symbols from there if you can find the ones you want.  Check the Unicode that LO Writer shows for the character in OpenSymbol and then look at other fonts to see which ones also have the symbol for that Unicode Code Point.

Look in the Insert | Special Character ... dialog for matches in different fonts.

Not a perfect solution, but it might provide a work-around for now.

 - Dennis

PS: I looked in Symbol and it doesn't have the character you want, so font substitution won't help.  But other fonts seem to have centered small dots.

-----Original Message-----
From: libreoffice-bounces+dennis.hamilton=acm.org at lists.freedesktop.org [mailto:libreoffice-bounces+dennis.hamilton=acm.org at lists.freedesktop.org] On Behalf Of Deve
Sent: Friday, May 27, 2011 01:37
To: libreoffice at lists.freedesktop.org
Subject: [Libreoffice] Word doesn't see symbols


I create math symbols on writer. It doesn't have font "Symbol". Only "OpenSymbol". Next I send document to somebody, who have only MS Word. 
He doesn't have "OpenSymbol". Word doesn't display some symbols. For example CDOT on math equation.

It's a problem when I must work with somebody who has only Word.

It could be solved if I could change font to official "Symbol". But I don't see it on properties.

Maybe better compatibility on saving to doc...

Any suggestions?
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