PEP: Unicode Indexing Helper Module

M.-A. Lemburg mal at lemburg.com
Fri Jul 13 14:04:16 CEST 2001


Please comment...

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PEP: 0262 (?)
Title: Unicode Indexing Helper Module
Version: $Revision: 1.0 $
Author: mal at lemburg.com (Marc-André Lemburg)
Status: Draft
Type: Standards Track
Python-Version: 2.3
Created: 06-Jun-2001
Post-History: 

Abstract

    This PEP proposes a new module "unicodeindex" which provides 
    means to index Unicode objects in various higher level abstractions
    of "characters".

Problem and Terminology

    Unicode objects can be indexed just like string object using what
    in Unicode terms is called a code unit as index basis.  

    Code units are the storage entities used by the Unicode
    implementation to store a single Unicode information unit and do
    not necessarily map 1-1 to code points which are the smallest
    entities encoded by the Unicode standard.

    These code points can sometimes be composed to form graphemes
    which are then displayed by the Unicode output device as one
    character. A word is then a sequence of characters separated by
    space characters or punctuation, a line is a sequence of code
    points separated by line breaking code point sequences.

    For addressing Unicode, there are basically five different methods
    by which you can reference the data:

    1. per code unit    (codeunit)
    2. per code point   (codepoint)
    3. per grapheme     (grapheme)
    4. per word         (word)
    5. per line         (line)

    The indexing type name is given in parenthesis and used in the
    module interface.

Proposed Solution

    I propose to add a new module to the standard Python library which
    provides interfaces implementing the above indexing methods.

Module Interface

    The module should provide the following interfaces for all four
    indexing styles:

    next_<indextype>(u, index) -> integer

        Returns the Unicode object index for the start of the next
        <indextype> found after u[index] or -1 in case no next element
        of this type exists.

    prev_<indextype>(u, index) -> integer

        Returns the Unicode object index for the start of the previous
        <indextype> found before u[index] or -1 in case no previous
        element of this type exists.

    <indextype>_index(u, n) -> integer

        Returns the Unicode object index for the start of the n-th
        <indextype> element in u. Raises an IndexError in case no n-th
        element can be found.

    <indextype>_count(u, index) -> integer

        Counts the number of complete <indextype> elements found in
        u[:index] and returns the count as integer.

    <indextype>_start(u, index) -> integer

        Returns 1 or 0 depending on u[index] marks the start of an
        <indextype> element.

    <indextype>_end(u, index) -> integer

        Returns 1 or 0 depending on u[index] marks the end of an
        <indextype> element.

    Used symbols:
       <indextype>   one of: codeunit, codepoint, grapheme, word, line
       u             is the Unicode object
       index         the Unicode object index
       n             is an integer    

Copyright

    This document has been placed in the public domain.



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-- 
Marc-Andre Lemburg
CEO eGenix.com Software GmbH
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Python Software:                        http://www.lemburg.com/python/





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