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Some characters using the &...; syntax show up in a post, e.g. &#nbsp; displays as a non-breaking space. Others don't, e.g. ⏻ for the "power button symbol", it just shows up as a square, i.e. ⏻, instead of:

enter image description here

...there are times when it would be great to use the symbol instead of typing "the power button". Per this 2016 article, the symbol is supported in Unicode 9.0. Is the Unicode 9.0 character set something which the Stack Exchange forums can make use of?

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    What really is the question here? – Patrick Hofman Jul 16 '17 at 20:35
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    I'm note sure if you noticed @PatrickHofman but the OP linked that single char to unicodepowersymbol.com. So the question is to have the glyphs for that char instead of the default. – rene Jul 16 '17 at 20:42
  • Okay. No, I didn't notice that. I guess my iPhone is too old 😄. At least emojis work, but that is another Unicode page. – Patrick Hofman Jul 16 '17 at 20:46
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    I can read the tag, but your question was unclear first. Now it is better, I have retracted my close vote. – Patrick Hofman Jul 17 '17 at 6:07
  • @Adam just curious, why by design and not declined? Because this is something that can't really be done? – Shadow The Dragon Wizard Jul 17 '17 at 7:06
  • @ShadowWizard given rene's answer, I gather that the support of the syntax for such symbols is incumbent upon the browser rendering the fonts and SE has a limited font set by design. If I understand correctly (which I may very well not), the symbol is not available in the stock font sets, so the requisite support lays at the feet of the OS & browser maintainers. – Mr. Kennedy Jul 17 '17 at 7:27
  • If I could, I would delete this question, but it has an answer so I cannot. Please stop downvoting it. – Mr. Kennedy Aug 1 '17 at 3:36
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I'm not sure how you expect SE to implement this?

The Unicode characters are stored and served back, it is the fonts used that lack support.

SE uses the stock fonts Arial, "Helvetica Neue", Helvetica, sans-serif so it is up to browser and OS maintainers to get their stuff updated. Once they do the new chars will show.

One possible way for SE to be ahead of browser and OS maintainers is to use Web Fonts. That would still be an external dependency (two actually, one for the font content and one for the server the font is hosted on, assuming they don't host the file on SE servers) but those webfonts might have a release schedule ahead of the stock fonts currently used. Using these fonts might have a performance penalty on page load which, if it does, makes it unlikely to be implemented as page speed is a design feature of the sites.

  • @Mr.Kennedy the only possible way to "support" characters that are not supported by the visitors system is to provide images, more likely SVG for each character. That's possible, but kind of insane. – Shadow The Dragon Wizard Jul 17 '17 at 7:08
  • @ShadowWizard meh, use a webfont – rene Jul 17 '17 at 7:41
  • hmm..... using those in few projects, and yes they sometimes hinder the page performance when the remote site is slow. – Shadow The Dragon Wizard Jul 17 '17 at 7:49
  • @ShadowWizard yeah, it was used on socvr.org as well but the lag was so annoying that we switched back to the stock fonts. – rene Jul 17 '17 at 7:56

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