Ian Bicking: the old part of his blog

Re: Do I hate Unicode, or Do I Hate ASCII?

There isn't really a lot of point in hating ASCII. ASCII is fine if you are absolutely sure your code will only ever be used by monolingual English speakers who don't give a sh*t about whether their text looks typographically half-decent (proper quotes, en- and em-dashes etc.)

If you have any interest in your code being used by the other 95% of the world, then ASCII simply isn't an option and you have to find a way to deal with unicode whether you like it or not.

Django incidentally has the same problem: http://code.djangoproject.com/ticket/170 ... which does rather beg the question, do American newspapers not even try to spell foreigners' names correctly?

Comment on Do I hate Unicode, or Do I Hate ASCII?
by Alan Little

Comments:

They obviously never bother to use pound signs or euros.

# Moof

I got your pound sign right here: # -- :-)

# Ray

Kind of off-topic, but I wonder: How did the typographical mark '#' come to be called "pound" in the US? Was it through keymap differences? Or is it just a co-incidence that Shift-3 happens to produce the "right pound for the job"?

(On a British keyboard, Shift-3 produces the GBP currency symbol. On a US keyboard, it produces the number sign -- what I would call a "hash" sign)

# Robert Hunter

The "octothorp" is often refered to as the "pound sign" because it is used to designate pounds when it follows a number in the retail trade (er, in the old days, when _I_ was a kid). E.g. "5# of flour", "3# of 10d common nails" (btw, that 'd' stands for 'penny'). See http://www.octothorp.us/octothorp.html for more...

# anonymous

I think most Americans don't think of that as a spelling error. After all, the letters are really the same, so you can just leave out the funny decorations that furriners like to write, right? :)

# Randall Randall