Many of the symbols are drawn from existing character sets or ISO or other national and international standards. The Unicode Standard states that "The universe of symbols is rich and open-ended." This makes the issue of what symbols to encode and how symbols should be encoded more complicated than the issues surrounding writing systems. Unicode focuses on symbols that make sense in a one-dimensional plain-text context. For example, the typical two-dimensional arrangement of electronic diagram symbols justifies their exclusion. (Box-drawing characters are a partial exception, for legacy purposes, and a number of electronic diagram symbols are indeed encoded in Unicode's Miscellaneous Technical block.) For adequate treatment in plain text, symbols must also be displayable in a monochromatic setting. Even with these limitations – monochromatic, one-dimensional and standards-based – the domain of potential Unicode symbols is extensive. (However, emojis – ideograms, graphic symbols – that were admitted into Unicode, allow colors although the colors are not standardized.)
Symbol block list
- Alphanumeric variants (based on Latin characters in Unicode)
- Enclosed variants
- Emoji and emoticons
- Dingbats (U+2700–U+27BF)
- Emoticons (U+1F600–U+1F64F)
- Miscellaneous Symbols (U+2600–U+26FF)
- Miscellaneous Symbols and Pictographs (U+1F300–U+1F5FF)
- Supplemental Symbols and Pictographs (U+1F900–1F9FF)
- Transport and Map Symbols (U+1F680..U+1F6FF)
- Additional emoji can be found in the following Unicode blocks: Arrows, Basic Latin, CJK Symbols and Punctuation, Enclosed Alphanumeric Supplement, Enclosed Alphanumerics, Enclosed CJK Letters and Months, Enclosed Ideographic Supplement, General Punctuation, Geometric Shapes, Latin-1 Supplement, Letterlike Symbols, Mahjong Tiles, Miscellaneous Symbols and Arrows, Miscellaneous Technical, Playing Cards, and Supplemental Arrows-B.
- Alchemical Symbols (1F700–1F77F)
- Arabic Mathematical Alphabetic Symbols (1EE00–1EEFF)
- Block Elements (U+2580–U+259F)
- Box Drawing (U+2500–U+257F)
- CJK Compatibility (U+3300–33FF)
- Combining Diacritical Marks for Symbols (U+20D0–U+20FF)
- Common Indic Number Forms (U+A830–A83F)
- Counting Rod Numerals (U+1D360–1D37F)
- Enclosed CJK Letters and Months (U+3200–32FF)
- Geometric Shapes (U+25A0–U+25FF)
- Geometric Shapes Extended (U+1F780-U+1F7FF)
- Indic Siyaq Numbers (U+1EC70–1ECBF)
- Mayan Numerals (U+1D2E0–1D2FF)
- Miscellaneous Symbols and Arrows (U+2B00–U+2BFF)
- Ornamental Dingbats (U+1F650-U+1F67F)
- Religious and political symbols (various blocks)
- Rumi Numeral Symbols (U+10E60–10E7F)
- Supplemental Punctuation (U+2E00–2E7F)
- Tai Xuan Jing Symbols (U+1D300–1D35F)
- Yijing Hexagram Symbols (U+4DC0–4DFF)
- "Section 22: Symbols" (PDF). The Unicode Standard. The Unicode Consortium. June 2018.
- "Section 22: Miscellaneous Technical" (PDF). The Unicode Standard. The Unicode Consortium. June 2018.
- "Unicode character database". The Unicode Standard. Retrieved 2018-06-09.
- "Enumerated Versions of The Unicode Standard". The Unicode Standard. Retrieved 2016-07-09.
- Unicode character code charts
- Draft Unicode Technical Report #25: Unicode Support for Mathematics
- shapecatcher.com — Search through characters by sketching one.