Universal Character Set [UCS]

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(n.) An ISO and International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standard listing of symbols established in 1993. The full name is the Universal Multiple-Octet Coded Character Set. The first part is the Architecture and Basic Multilingual Plane (BMP), based on Unicode and on an ISO draft for 16-bit character codes. Each plane consists of 256 x 256 locations. BMP is the initial plane, and others are supposed to follow. Java was the first programming language to define a character as 16 bits. Defined in ISO/IEC 10646, UCS includes the ASCII and Latin-1 subsets with their binary values unchanged.