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Unicodex is a demo database-backed serverless Django application, that uses:


This demo can be deployed by multiple different methods: via the Cloud Run button, through Terraform, or manually via a guided tutorial.


Run on Google Cloud

See app.json and the .gcloud/ folder for implementation details.


See terraform/ for configuration details.


Don't forget to cleanup your project resources when you're done!

Application Design

Unicodex itself

Emojipedia curates information about emoji and how they are represented on different platforms. E.g. the Sparkles emoji () is mostly represented by three golden stars in a cluster, but this has changed over the years (click the sparkle image marked "Google" and you'll see how Sparkles has appeared in every version of Android over the years. It used to look very different!)

In Unicodex, these relations are represented by a codepoint (Sparkles) having multiple designs (images). Each image represents a version from a vendor (e.g. Google Android 9.0, Twitter Twemoji 1.0, ...). These relations are represented by four models: Codepoint, Design, VendorVersion and Vendor, respectively. Designs have a FileField which stores the image.

In the Django admin, an admin action has been setup so that you can select a Codepoint, and run the "Generate designs" actions. This will -- for all configured vendors and vendor versions -- scrape Emojipedia for the information, including uploading images. Alternatively, you can enter this information manually from the django admin.

Service design - one deployment per Google Cloud project

Unicodex runs as a Cloud Run service. Using the Python package django-storages, it's been configured to take a GS_BUCKET_NAME as a storage place for its media. Using the Python package django-environ it takes a complex DATABASE_URL, which will point to a Cloud SQL PostgreSQL database. The is also designed to pull a specific secret into the environment. These are all designed to live in the same Google Cloud Project.

In this way, Unicodex runs 1:1:1 -- one Cloud Run Service, one Cloud SQL Database, one Google Storage bucket. It also assumes that there is only one service/database/bucket.

This implementation is live at

Other service designs

It is possible to host multiple instances of Unicodex on the one project (where the service name, bucket name, and database name, and django database username have different appended 'slugs', and all share one instance), but this configuration is out of scope for this project.

You can host multiple versions of Unicodex using project isolation (one Google Cloud account can have multiple projects) without any code editing, but this may not work for your own project. Read more about project organisation considerations


Please see the contributing guidelines


This library is licensed under Apache 2.0. Full license text is available in LICENSE.