Please don't feed the list

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2010/11/10 07:01 -05:00, original URI:

I really try to avoid The Unicode List whenever possible.

It isn't just because it is full of time-wasting rabble rousers. Though it is so that is part of it.

And it isn't just because it is full of people who by most reasonable measures are bats*** crazy. Though it is, so that is part of it.

It is largely because it brings out the worst in everyone.

I mean, even the smart people say things that make you wonder if they put their brains in a blind trust while they wrote the mail that makes you simply shake your head and sigh.

Thankfully the not-quite-as-smart people remind me that they can get it wrong better than any momentary lapse that one of the smart ones might have....

Like a conversation about non-Unicode web pages and the Windows clipboard:

People started going on and on about the need to have the right system locale to see the non-Unicode pages correctly.

Did they try it? Do they use the Internet on their Windows machines? Do they even run Windows?

INTERNET EXPLORER supports Unicode.

Every legacy web page that isn't lying about its encoding says what its encoding is. And IE, being a Unicode application, converts the page.

So if you can see it right then the data is already Unicode and cooy/paste is a pure Unicode operation.

Hell, even if you can't see it right then the data is still Unicode and you can change the encoding to make it right. Copy/paste is still Unicode.

The DEFAULT SYSTEM LOCALE is pretty much beside the point and has nothing to do with anything going on here.

I am guessing they just aren't running Windows so they are using phrases they have heard before.

Over and over, it never gets any better.

It really is best to avoid The Unicode List.....

Doug Ewell on 10 Nov 2010 7:20 AM:

I still live in hopes it is better to educate the uneducated than to avoid them. I may be wrong.

Michael S. Kaplan on 10 Nov 2010 8:04 AM:

I lack the kind of patience that list requires....

mpz on 10 Nov 2010 8:23 AM:

If you're talking about the question about Burmese that just popped up, the non-unicodeness and clipboard are in fact quite pertinent to this problem. The website that was given, supplies a font that replaces *ascii* code points with Burmese characters and proceeds to use ASCII (specifying said font) instead of the correct Unicode characters, and of course this results in all kinds of infinite pain when the user tries to copy and paste the characters into other applications.

Therefore "So if you can see it right then the data is already Unicode" is not an accurate assertion in this case. Of course, it should be, but people are stupid...

What I'm saying is, we should nuke that web site from orbit. Just to be sure.

Michael S. Kaplan on 10 Nov 2010 8:52 AM:

That is a different problem then one that would be affected by the SYSTEM LOCALE. Thus the focus of my disdian does not overlap with your point....

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