Talk: The Power and Responsibility of Unicode Adoption

Communication is difficult. Whether it’s between humans or machines or a combination of the two, trying to translate meaningful information is a lossy process.

Converting languages to use the new Unicode standard is hard, but once it's in place, you get this marvellous feature-add: Emoji compatibility. No longer do we have to make faces with symbols, or be forced to platform-specific emoticons! Rejoice in the extended character set!

Emoji has a rich history as a way to allow the communication of ideas in a reduced amount of data, and dates back to a time where this was important: SMS communications in Japan. However, as social networks feverishly try and clamber into this bandwagon, their implementations of the standard create more issues with miscommunication that aren't already possible with a 12x12 pictograph.