I {entity} Unicode

These are available as bumper stickers and t-shirts:

This is a companion discussion topic for the original blog entry at: http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/2008/03/i-entity-unicode.html

Im always having problems moving java files between linux and windows… all the accents becomes squares.

Am I the only one who gets it but doesn’t think it’s funny?

You’re not alone spotcatbug. This is nerd humor of the worst kind…

Aside from that a great set of articles.

It is funny how on the rss feed for this post there is an advert exhorting us: “Don’t denormalize your data just to write reports!”

So, shouldn’t your title be

I #9829; Unicode


a href="http://www.snpp.com/episodes/3F06.html"http://www.snpp.com/episodes/3F06.html/a

Grandma: [singing] How many roads must a man walk down before you can
call him a man?
Homer: Seven!
Lisa: No, Dad, it’s a rhetorical question.
Homer: Rhetorical, eh? Eight!
Lisa: Dad, do you even know what “rhetorical” means?
Homer: [incredulous] Do I know what “rhetorical” means?!

@Ole: Isn’t yours the same as the one on the T-shirt?
(Now see, if you’d proposed “I#6533;Unicode” instead, then my comment could have been a meta-joke based on the fact that my browser’s font sucks, but I checked the page source and you really did write “I#65533;Unicode”, so it’s not as funny.)

@dannygutters: It’s a rhetorical question because, although a truthful answer is possible, Jeff in fact did not expect you to bother with one. “Rhetorical” doesn’t mean “unanswerable”; it just means that the questioner doesn’t expect to receive a (literal) answer.

So, why is this question rhetorical?

Trick question; it’s not rhetorical at all!

I use Windows, and I’ve never installed Photoshop

What happened to the advice in “Programming Tip: Learn a Graphics Editor”?

Sean-- you’re absolutely right. Paint.NET is awesome!


Prior to that I used Paint Shop Pro, until it became unbearable bloatware that took over my machine…


What happened to the advice in “Programming Tip: Learn a Graphics Editor”?
Sean, maybe Paint Shop Pro was good enough then, and now Paint.Net?

Darn! Beat me by 7s :wink:

“Gripping hand.” Loved it. Not enough fans left out there anymore.

Wow. I printed up the exact same thing a few years ago and hung it on my office door (while fighting a particularly nasty issue with an unnamed language on PocketPC).

I thought I was being original. :slight_smile:

Maybe it was the phrasing or the fact that intonation doesn’t travel well on the internet (first there was bold, italic, and underline… next, sarcasm and rolleye text decoration!) But when you said “Why is this funny” I sort of thought you were implying that it wasn’t- That proper use of unicode was serious business and there was (dad voice) “nothing funny about it”- The same way one would ask that if someone made an offensive joke or something. Perhaps better phrasing? On the other hand, I might have been entirely alone in that.

My reaction was more like “groaaan… that’s not funny… that’s so sad!” Like… “aww, poor Unicode; people can’t even heart you properly because you’re so crazy.”

A couple of years back most linux fonts rendered the replacement character (#65533;) as something very similar to a comma which was
weird/confusing/hard to notice. I mentioned it in a mailing list and it was fixed up promptly.

Other unicode related links I found useful:

I guess Joel wrote a site never hosted at a data center in the US that charged by bandwidth and traffic. and WTF is
"So I have an announcement to make: if you are a programmer working in 2003 and you don’t know the basics of characters, character sets, encodings, and Unicode, and I catch you, I’m going to punish you by making you peel onions for 6 months in a submarine. I swear I will."

I don’t think all he’ll do in that sub. Geez, I’ll write 32 byte characters just to avoid that. And how many job apps have I sent to Israel…let me check… oh yeah, 0. I grew up in a 64k world, and unless they ask I code for it.

And Atwood you rock.

Hate to be a jerk, but this only marginally relates to Unicode.

In your example, it’s the font causing the problems. Font designers typically map a specific glyph that maps to any characters they haven’t accounted for. The font is deficient, and the WingDing heart ‘character’ doesn’t exist as a heart in all fonts. The mapped glyph can be anything, but convention is a box.

Unicode is boring, but check out OpenType and text processing. Rendering text to pixels sounds a lot easier than it really is when you consider ligatures and scripts.

  • I hate the fact that on my mac "'s is different from my pc "'s. Different types of single quotes too. Now that was a retarded decision in the history of computing.

I call on the world to rid themselves of all the silly permutations of scripts, ligatures, and other nasty things. Wanna draw pictures, use paint. ASCII forever man!

Summary: I don’t see why this was blogged about.