Mark Davis born 1952 – Inventor of Unicode


Mark Davis was born on the 13th of September 1952, and is the president of the Unicode Consortium (non-profit organization that coordinates the development of the Unicode standard) since it was founded, in 1991. Mark Davis is a specialist in software text processing and internationalisation, but most famous for his contribution to the specifications of Unicode, being the principal author of bi-directional algorithm, collation, text segmentation, normalisation, identifiers, scripts, compression, security, regular expressions and character conversion.


Mark was responsible for the overall structure of ICU (the premier Unicode software internationalization library), and also built the foundation of the Java internationalisation classes. Davis also founded the Unicode CLDR project which he also manages, and is a co-writer of BCP 47 “Tags for Identifying Languages”, used for classifying languages in every HTML and XML document.


Since the beginning of 2006, Davis has done a lot of work on software internationalisation at Google, concentrating on secure and effective use of Unicode. He also worked on comprehensive enhancement and adoption of the software internationalisation libraries and introduction and preservation of secure identifiers for languages, regions, scripts, currencies, and time zones.


For many years now, Mark has specialised in object-orientated programming, text software and internationalisation. After gaining his doctorate from Stanford University, for several years he worked in Switzerland, then returned to California to join Apple. This is where he co-created the Macintosh KanjiTalk and Script Manager, and authored the Macintosh Arabic and Hebrew configurations. Mark also worked on sections of the Macintosh Operating System, including input into the composition of TrueType. He was then the architect and manager for the frameworks of Taligent international, whilst also being the architect for a considerable section of the Java international libraries. Mark was also the Chief Software Globalization Architect at IBM. He is the creator of a variety of patents, mainly in internationalisation. At numerous times he has also managed departments covering internationalisation, text, operating system services, technical communications and porting.


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