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bug#3501: 23.0.94; Use Unicode in Info (?)

From: Drew Adams
Subject: bug#3501: 23.0.94; Use Unicode in Info (?)
Date: Tue, 9 Jun 2009 10:43:01 -0700

> Please no.  I absolutely do not want to "experience" fancy 
> unicode characters when reading info.  It's bad enough
> getting them in email and in usenet postings from Xah Lee. ;-)

What'll you tell your new Unicode toaster, when your old toaster breaks? ;-)
Better give up on iPhone and other such new-fangled gadgets altogether.

> ASCII can be displayed perfectly on any
> screen or teletype or even punched card puncher that can 
> display English at all.  Unicode, by contrast, needs a fancy setup,
> even if lots of computers already have such a setup.

Wow! We should reduce Emacs display to the level of a card punch? Presumably a
hand-crank model - no reason to assume electrical support.

Isn't Emacs capable of somehow knowing whether the current display can show
non-ASCII chars? If not, we'll forever remain with horse-and-buggy, I guess.

I'm not against coddling your sturdy old card punch, but not at the price of
giving up the world beyond ASCII for the rest of, well, the world beyond ASCII
(does your punch _really_ speak ASCII, or does it speak EBCDIC or perhaps Univac
field-data chars?).

Would you by the same token remove the possibility of Emacs files to use Unicode
chars? Library buff-menu.el uses utf-8 encoding, for example, and displays a
U+2014 (em dash char) if available. It tests like this:

;; Use U+2014 (EM DASH) to underline if possible,
;; else use ASCII (i.e. U+002D, HYPHEN-MINUS).
(if (char-displayable-p ?\u2014) ?\u2014 ?-)

Presumably something similar (but preferably more general) can be done to ensure
that your card punch can swallow J/orgensen if it can't digest Jørgensen.

> Is that bad?  J/orgensen is more readable (IMHO) than JÀ«rgensen (or
> whatever that letter's two bytes actually are).

Jørgensen is more readable than J/orgensen, but J/orgensen is fine for a card
punch. ;-)

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