On Sun, 08 Feb 2004 18:31:08 GMT in article
< XXXX@XXXXX.COM >, EA wrote...
Were they quotation marks or "typographic quotation marks" (a.k.a. "smart
quotes" or "curly quotes")?
If you sent typographic quotation marks, e.g., those produced on a Windows
system by entering ALT+0147 and ALT+0148 on the keyboard or by pasting from MS
Word, then this is quite possible, because...
...ISO-8859-1 does not have typographic quotation marks in its character
repertoire. See, for example:
...which says, in part:
In ISO 8859-1, code positions 128 - 159 are explicitly reserved for control
purposes; they "correspond to bit combinations that do not represent graphic
characters". The so-called Windows character set (WinLatin1, or Windows code
page 1252, to be exact) uses some of those positions for printable
characters. Thus, the Windows character set is not identical with ISO
In the Windows character set, some positions in the range 128 - 159 are
assigned to printable characters, such as "smart quotes", em dash, en dash,
and trademark symbol. Thus, the character repertoire is larger than ISO
Latin 1. The use of octets in the range 128 - 159 in any data to be
processed by a program that expects ISO 8859-1 encoded data is an error
which might cause just anything. They might for example get ignored, or be
processed in a manner which looks meaningful, or be interpreted as control
I suspect that the Netscape e-mail client is treating the Content-type header
strictly and so is displaying question marks for the reserved ISO-8859-1
character encodings as an indication of error. Pegasus Mail, apparently, does
not, as it will both happily transmit messages containing those character
encodings but labelled ISO-8859-1, as well as display the Windows characters
assigned to those (reserved) positions. This behavior is consistent with the
last sentence quoted above, if less than ideal.
Two correct methods would be:
1. Send the correct "charset" parameter, i.e., the message header should be:
Content-type: text/plain; charset=windows-1252
...but I don't know whether PM can be coerced into doing this.
2. Substitute proper ISO-8859-1 characters for the "Windows characters",
e.g., change the "smart quotes" to regular quotation marks (ALT+0034).
I do this manually whenever I paste from a "smart quote" source.
-- Dave Bryan
NOTE: Due to unrelenting SPAM, I regret that I have been forced to post with
an encoded address. Please ROT13 this message to obtain the reply address.
Address also available at http://www.yqcomputer.com/
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