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?
They obviously never bother to use pound signs or euros.
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)
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? :)