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 [![pub package](https://img.shields.io/pub/v/characters.svg)](https://pub.dev/packages/characters)
 [![Build Status](https://travis-ci.org/dart-lang/characters.svg?branch=master)](https://travis-ci.org/dart-lang/characters)
-`Characters` are strings viewed as sequences of *user-perceived character*s,
-also know as [Unicode (extended) grapheme clusters](https://unicode.org/reports/tr29/#Grapheme_Cluster_Boundaries).
-The `Characters` class allows access to the individual characters of a string,
-and a way to navigate back and forth between them using a `CharacterRange`.
+[`Characters`][Characters] are strings viewed as
+sequences of **user-perceived character**s,
+also known as [Unicode (extended) grapheme clusters][Grapheme Clusters].
+The [`Characters`][Characters] class allows access to
+the individual characters of a string,
+and a way to navigate back and forth between them
+using a [`CharacterRange`][CharacterRange].
+## Unicode characters and representations
+There is no such thing as plain text.
+Computers only know numbers,
+so any "text" on a computer is represented by numbers,
+which are again stored as bytes in memory.
+The meaning of those bytes are provided by layers of interpretation,
+building up to the *glyph*s that the computer displays on the screen.
+| Abstraction           | Dart Type                                                    | Usage                                                        | Example                                                      |
+| --------------------- | ------------------------------------------------------------ | ------------------------------------------------------------ | ------------------------------------------------------------ |
+| Bytes                 | [`ByteBuffer`][ByteBuffer],<br />[`Uint8List`][Uint8List]                           | Physical layout: Memory or network communication.            | `file.readAsBytesSync()`                                     |
+| [Code units][]        | [`Uint8List`][Uint8List] (UTF&#x2011;8)<br />[`Uint16List`][Uint16List], [`String`][String] (UTF&#x2011;16) | Standard formats for<br /> encoding code points in memory.<br />Stored in memory using one (UTF&#x2011;8) or more (UTF&#x2011;16) bytes. One or more code units encode a code point. | `string.codeUnits`<br />`string.codeUnitAt(index)`<br />`utf8.encode(string)` |
+| [Code points][]       | [`Runes`][Runes]                                                    | The Unicode unit of meaning.                                 | `string.runes`                                               |
+| [Grapheme Clusters][] | [`Characters`][Characters]                                               | Human perceived character. One or more code points.          | `string.characters`                                          |
+| [Glyphs][]            |                                                              | Visual rendering of grapheme clusters.                       | `print(string)`                                              |
+A Dart `String` is a sequence of UTF-16 code units,
+just like strings in JavaScript and Java.
+The runtime system decides on the underlying physical representation.
+That makes plain strings inadequate
+when needing to manipulate the text that a user is viewing, or entering,
+because string operations are not working at the grapheme cluster level.
+For example, to abbreviate a text to, say, the 15 first characters or glyphs,
+an string like "A 🇬🇧 text in English"
+should abbreviate to "A 🇬🇧 text in Eng&mldr; when counting characters,
+but will become "A 🇬🇧 text in &mldr;"
+if counting code units using [`String`][String] operations.
+Whenever you need to manipulate strings at the character level,
+you should be using the [`Characters`][Characters] type,
+not the methods of the [`String`][String] class.
+## The Characters class
+The [`Characters`][Characters] class exposes a string
+as a sequence of grapheme clusters.
+All operations on [`Characters`][Characters] operate
+on entire grapheme clusters,
+so it removes the risk of splitting combined characters or emojis
+that are inherent in the code-unit based [`String`][String] operations.
+You can get a [`Characters`][Characters] object for a string using either
+the constructor [`Characters(string)`][Characters constructor]
+or the extension getter `string.characters`.
+At its core, the class is an [`Iterable<String>`][Iterable]
+where the element strings are single grapheme clusters.
+This allows sequential access to the individual grapheme clusters
+of the original string.
+On top of that, there are operations mirroring the operations
+of [`String`][String] that are not index, code-unit or code-point based,
+like [`startsWith`][Characters.startsWith]
+or [`replaceAll`][Characters.replaceAll].
+There are some differences between these and the [`String`][String] operations.
+For example the replace methods only accept characters as pattern.
+Regular expressions are not grapheme cluster aware,
+so they cannot be used safely on a sequence of characters.
+Grapheme clusters have varying length in the underlying representation,
+so operations on a [`Characters`][Characters] sequence cannot be index based.
+Instead the [`CharacterRange`][CharacterRange] *iterator*
+provided by [`Characters.iterator`][Characters.iterator]
+has been greatly enhanced.
+It can move both forwards and backwards,
+and it can span a *range* of grapheme cluster.
+Most operations that can be performed on a full [`Characters`][Characters]
+can also be performed on the grapheme clusters
+in the range of a [`CharacterRange`][CharacterRange].
+The range can be contracted, expanded or moved in various ways,
+not restricted to using [`moveNext`][CharacterRange.moveNext],
+to move to the next grapheme cluster.
+// Using String indices.
+String firstTagString(String source) {
+  var start = string.indexOf("<") + 1;
+  if (start > 0) {
+    var end = string.indexOf(">", start);
+    if (end >= 0) {
+	    return string.substring(start, end);
+    }
+  }
+  return null;
+// Using CharacterRange operations.
+Characters firstTagCharacters(Characters source) =>
+  var range = source.findFirst("<".characters);
+  if (range != null && range.moveUntil(">".characters)) {
+    return range.currentCharacters;
+  }
+  return null;
+[ByteBuffer]: https://api.dart.dev/stable/2.0.0/dart-typed_data/ByteBuffer-class.html	"ByteBuffer class"
+[CharacterRange.moveNext]:  https://pub.dev/documentation/characters/latest/characters/CharacterRange/moveNext.html "CharacterRange.moveNext"
+[CharacterRange]:  https://pub.dev/documentation/characters/latest/characters/CharacterRange-class.html "CharacterRange class"
+[Characters constructor]: https://pub.dev/documentation/characters/latest/characters/Characters/Characters.html "Characters constructor"
+[Characters.iterator]: https://pub.dev/documentation/characters/latest/characters/Characters/iterator.html "CharactersRange get iterator"
+[Characters.replaceAll]: https://pub.dev/documentation/characters/latest/characters/Characters/replaceAll.html "Characters.replaceAlle"
+[Characters.startsWith]: https://pub.dev/documentation/characters/latest/characters/Characters/startsWith.html "Characters.startsWith"
+[Characters]: https://pub.dev/documentation/characters/latest/characters/Characters-class.html "Characters class"
+[Code Points]: https://unicode.org/glossary/#code_point "Unicode Code Point"
+[Code Units]: https://unicode.org/glossary/#code_unit "Unicode Code Units"
+[Grapheme Clusters]: https://unicode.org/reports/tr29/#Grapheme_Cluster_Boundaries "Unicode (Extended) Grapheme Cluster"
+[Iterable]: https://api.dart.dev/stable/2.0.0/dart-core/Iterable-class.html	"Iterable class"
+[Runes]: https://api.dart.dev/stable/2.0.0/dart-core/Runes-class.html	"Runes class"
+[String]: https://api.dart.dev/stable/2.0.0/dart-core/String-class.html	"String class"
+[Uint16List]: https://api.dart.dev/stable/2.0.0/dart-typed_data/Uint16List-class.html	"Uint16List class"
+[Uint8List]: https://api.dart.dev/stable/2.0.0/dart-typed_data/Uint8List-class.html	"Uint8List class"