UNICODE H4CK - going around A world

Dear Everyone, this is the first forum / community I find that MAY be able to help me; even if you forward me only to the right place, I appreciate it. Thank you for your time.

My question is technical but the source is artistic. I can’t find ‘my’ character among the 150k Unicode entries and it’s mainly because I made up this character but also because (and this is where you might be able to help me) from so many variations how is it that I cannot (even) come close to a satisfactory combining result?

I’m looking for a (silent) N inside a Z. The low-crypt end result is basically an X in a box. That’s the compromising result for me. I’m looking for better. Do you know about a way where I can make the Z come closer to the N? or where I can end up crossing the two letters somehow?

I’m interested in anything that could lead me closer to my destination.

Thank you all!

Unicode has multiple characters that are an X in a box, like:

  • U+26DD ⛝
  • U+2327 ⌧
  • U+1F771 🝱

You can search for Unicode characters by drawing them here:

But, there is no character in Unicode that looks exactly like what you are looking for. However, when you create your own font, you can make custom glyphs. Typically, this is done using ligatures our Private Use Area coding; it depends on your use case.

Dear Florian, thank you very much for your reply! May I ask about “private use area coding”? You almost make it sound like that there is a way to ‘inject’ my character into the Unicode system without [their] concensus. Or when you say ‘depending on my use case’, the implication is still the same: there has to be consensus and context? I read the about the injection process; it starts with a proposal and ends with global implementation. It’s not for individuals. Or in this moment, it is not.

May I ask? Do you know about a way where I can ‘go around’ Unicode and end up with my self-designed character still appearing flawlessly on any major platforms (browsers, phones etc.)?

Everything helpful appreciated!

And I meant besides shapecatcher.com - which is amazing :blue_heart:

The best solution for you depends on what you want to do. Where do you intend to use this symbol and for what puropse?

Unicode designates large ranges of characters for private use. Such a range is called a Private Use Area (PUA). You can lean more about them on the Unicode website:

If you want your character to appear exactly as you want it to look like on different devices, the best option is to use Glyphs to create a font with a single glyph that represent this character. You then use a PUA character or a font feature called “ligatures” to write your character.

For example, the Unicode character U+F8FF is a private-use character that Apple has defined to look like it’s company logo on many of the fonts included on Apple devices:

So even though Unicode does not contain the Apple logo, it works as a character as long as the right font is loaded.

1 Like

I was just thinking about apple’s branded logo as an example! I wanted to include it into my previous comment to illustrate the real life example of how something that does not directly connect to Unicode’s ‘major profile’ (to connect the world’s languages and writing defaults in the same writing system) can also stay present and be represented in this unified system. Apple’s reason/purpose to find a way for their logo to be able to appear inside Unicode has to be similar to mine. For me, it’s about my artist name in which I’m spelling 4 letters (technically) as 3 letters. The third letter (N inside Z) does not exist, yet I’ll have to enter it manually (or paste it from clipboard). This is why I need a solution. The apple logo was/is my secret motivator. If apple can have their own Unicode character, (even if not in the conventional sense) I should be able to do the same. Because the reason is not historical/language-related/political etc. It’s for a ‘brand’. I mean apple is a company and I am a person, still, the pattern should be similar.

Florian, you are great! May I ask, how I should ‘compose’ a contract when I approach a graphic designer? I’m not a programmer myself and I don’t know much about computer code.

Thank you.

If you want an artist name like Love Symbol #2 or a brand like , you can probably ask many of the members of this forum to create you a font with a single glyph. (Please use the private message feature of the forum to contact each other: click on a profile picture → Message.) Or you can try yourself using Glyphs or Glyphs Mini. Both have a 30 day free trial, which should be enough time to create a single glyph.

Hi Florian - I tried to dm/pm you but system wouldn’t let me - would you mind dm-ing/pm-ing me?

I’d have something for you.

Kind regards,