49571 ≈ 2π Sympathetic Characters, which I believe proves truth ≈ beauty

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2011/04/13 07:01 -04:00, original URI: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/michkap/archive/2011/04/13/10153025.aspx


Curses to Wes Miller for making my life interesting in distracting ways.

Well, just kidding. No curses. But he has a habit of sending me interesting things to look at over Facebook IM.

Like this Unicode video on YouTube:

 What it does is run through ever visible character in Unicode from U+0000 to U+ffff, also known as the BMP, the basic multilingual plane.

It can be interesting to watch the video at various speeds, perhaps following along with the Unicode Roadmap of the BMP, also known as Plane 0.

The full video in HD is a 33 minutes and 16 seconds adventure of 49,571 characters, one frame per character.

Maybe you can find your favorite character this way. :-)

I chose to watch it straight through while listening to Sympathetic Character from Alanis Morissette's Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie. The song was able to play a hair over 2π times, and after a brief estimate of starting from the π character (U+03c0, Greek Small Letter Pi) then it's closer to exactly 2π times, which seems like it has to mean something interesting.

Now I'm not ordinarily a huge numerological freak. But seeing 49,571 characters in Unicode put me in an interesting place.

In any case, enjoy the video. It is very cool.... 


Andrew West on 13 Apr 2011 2:53 PM:

It would be cool if it did show every single graphic Unicode character, or even all characters in the BMP, but it is 5,000 characters short of what's currently in the BMP, and seems not to include anything much encoded during the last ten years.

Michael S. Kaplan on 13 Apr 2011 4:54 PM:

Ugh, adding the additional characters would crush my mathematical and numerological theories involving Alanis Morissette.

Bummer, I thought it might have indicated another bite at the apple! (ref)

Michael S. Kaplan on 13 Apr 2011 7:16 PM:

Just think -- if it had been done on a Windows 7 machine, font coverage would have been more complete!


referenced by

2011/04/19 Unicode 6.0 -- one web page at a time

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