Sunday, 8 May 2011

Unicode 6.0 — One block at a time

As a follow-up to my recent javascript-based Unicode Slide Show, I have now made available BabelMap Online, a javascript-based Unicode character browser based on BabelMap, my popular Unicode Character Map application. It does not have all the utilities and special features that the real BabelMap provides, but it should be a useful tool for finding and picking Unicode characters online. You can select any Unicode block from a dropdown list, or browse through all of Unicode one block at a time (blocks with more than 1,280 characters are shown in multiple pages). If you click on a character in the code chart it will be inserted into an edit box below, and the characters in the edit box may be viewed as Unicode characters or as hexadecimal character references or as decimal character references. You may also search for characters by name, and go to a particular Unicode code point.

The page accepts parameters to initially show a particular block (?block=Block Name), a particular character (?char=262F), search for a given character name or part of a name (?find=string), or find an exact character name (?name=character name).

Click on the image below to launch BabelMap Online in a new window.


Klortho said...

This is truly phenomenal!! I've looked over your Javascript, and learned more about Unicode just from reading your module for a few minutes than I would browsing the Unicode site for hours. Thank you!

I don't see any copyright -- what is the license? Or are you putting it in the public domain?

Andrew West said...

Thanks for the kind comments. I have now added a CC BY-SA 3.0 license to unicode.js, which allows you to use and distribute it for personal or commercial purposes, and modify it as you like, as long as you attribute the source, and provide it under the same or similar license.

I'm working on other stuff at the moment, but plan to add a bunch more functionality next month.

kyositz said...

Font which covers Balinese is Aksara Bali
downloadable from
Font which covers Batak is Batak-Unicode
dwonloadable from
GNU Unifont 5.1 at
covers Balinese and Lepcha.

Andrew West said...

Thanks, I've added these fonts now.

Denilson Sá said...

Great tool, I use it every now and then, and I've already spent a lot of time finding cool Unicode chars. :)

There is one thing that annoys me: pressing Enter while the focus is on any inputbox will actually submit the form, reloading the page. It's not useful.

I'd expect that pressing Enter on the text box next to the "Go To U+" button would behave the same as pressing that button. Likewise for the "Search For" button and text box.

And how about pressing Enter while on all other fields? Well, probably it should do nothing.
At most, it could reload the settings from the form, so that if the display got out of sync from the form (for some any reason), it would get in sync again.

Andrew West said...

Thanks for the obversations. Actually, I forgot to test what happens when you press Enter, so the behaviour is undefined. However, I agree that it is wrong, so I will look and see what I can do to make it behave more intuitively.