The Power ⚑️ and Responsibility πŸ˜“ of Unicode Adoption

A presentation at DjangoCon US 2017 in in Spokane, WA, USA by Katie McLaughlin

Communication is difficult. Whether between humans, machines, or a combination of the two, trying to translate meaningful information is a lossy process.

Converting programming languages to use the new Unicode standard is hard, but once it’s in place, you get this marvelous feature-add: emoji compatibility. No longer do we have to make faces with symbols or use platform-specific emoticons. Rejoice in the extended character set.

Emoji have a rich history as a way to allow the communication of ideas in a reduced amount of data. They date back to a time where this was important: SMS communications in Japan. However, as social networks feverishly try to clamber onto this bandwagon, their implementations of the standard create issues with miscommunication that aren’t possible with a 12Γ—12 pictograph.

We’ll discuss the history of emoji, cross-platform adoption, the Unicode standard, and emoji accessibility in web applications. ✨


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