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Re: Problems with - and ' in some man-pages

Eric Lavarde writes,

> in some man pages ... the dashes and single quotes are
> not really what they look like, but some other unicode
> letter.  This has two major drawbacks: 
> - search for options become nearly impossible
> ...

You illustrate well the fundamental problem with
indiscriminate use of a very large character set like
Unicode.  If people want to use Unicode, this is fine;
Unicode and utf-8 exist to be used, after all.  However,
restricted character sets (mainly ascii and Latin-1)
offer several real practical benefits that Unicode can
never provide.  One such benefit is that dashes and
single quotes are usually what they appear to be.

Comprehensiveness is important, and Unicode is nothing
if not comprehensive.  On the other hand, simplicity is
a prime aesthetic, which Unicode lacks.

Thaddeus H. Black
508 Nellie's Cave Road
Blacksburg, Virginia 24060, USA
+1 540 961 0920, t@b-tk.org

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