Post by Btms Post by Jane Vernon Post by Btms Post by Jane Vernon
Apparently there is one!
No wonder we have never been able to spot it on umra, though, as I don't
think any UK keyboard is fitted with one.
You can (in Windows) generate a lot of characters your keyboard hasn't
got, especially if you have a keyboard wide enough to have a numeric pad
at the right (i. e. any standard one, but not some laptop/netbook ones):
you hold down the Alt key, type the code for the character (must be on
the numeric pad, and num lock must be on), and when you release the alt
key, the character will appear. To find the codes, run Character Map
(it's under accessories, or just Start | Run | type "charmap"), and _for
the ones where a code exists_, it shows you in the bottom right corner
what it is (for example, for the Spanish open-question-mark, it's
telling me it's "Alt+0191"). Or, get and install AllChars
(http://allchars.zwolnet.com/) which is easier IMO, and works even if
you _haven't_ got a numeric keypad. BUT ...
Post by Btms Post by Jane Vernon Post by Btms
Coo, who knew! But umra will just have to continue with occasional sense
of humour absences.
Were you employing an irony smiley there? Many of your posts are
decorated with little square boxes which have no meaning at this end :(
Apparently, if you receive messages on old software, they can't read the
graphic. This is a face with a lonf nose' which hope suggests my comment
should not be taken too seriously.
... it's not just old software: there are parts of the internet through
which your character may pass that will break it is it isn't part of
standard ASCII. (For example: in the above, after "lonf nose" above, I
see an apostrophe; whether that's my old software or because the message
has passed through an arcane part, or both, I don't know.
There are _roughly_ three classes of characters:
1. Standard ASCII, which pass through everything (note - the pound sign
is _not_ one of those);
2. "Extended ASCII", which is the next 128 characters (the ones that do
have an "Alt code" as described above) - these include most
accented/umlauted characters and some common symbols, which pass through
quite a lot of things OK - for example e acute é, o umlaut ö, mu (or
micro) μ, the pound sign £, plus-or-minus ±, degrees °, and so on; and
3. all the rest. These _sometimes_ come through as the sender sees them,
sometimes as a square or other "unknown character" character (when
that's the case, it's usually old software rather than corruption on the
way to you), or sometimes converted into characters representing its
hexadecimal code (%AE, A$255, and similar), or occasionally they just
get swallowed altogether and don't appear as anything.
So to be sure your intention gets through unscathed, it's best to only
use smileys (or emoticons, or whatever you want to call them) made from
standard punctuation, such as :-), :-(, :-| ["|" _is_ part of standard
ASCII], and so on. Some systems recognise these sequences (though not
usually the left-handed versions!) and convert them to right-way-up
yellow smileys; it's best when this is only done in the sender's screen
(or on receipt) rather than changing what's sent, though. [In other
words: you type ( - : (without the spaces); this changes to a smiley _on
your screen_, but what is sent still remains the three characters; then
it might be converted on the reader's screen too. (I realised that if
you have such software, you would wonder what I was on about if I didn't
put the spaces in!)]
J. P. Gilliver. UMRA: 1960/<1985 MB++G()AL-IS-Ch++(p)***@T+H+Sh0!:`)DNAf
For this star a "night on the tiles" means winning at Scrabble - Kathy Lette
(on Kylie), RT 2014/1/11-17