There are two problems that occur in every project: data conversion and character encoding. This talk will give you an understanding for what a character set is and what an encoding is (yes, these are not the same thing). We will debunk two myths and give you the ability to differentiate between encoding and rendering problems
Although everyone knows something about character encoding, it's a topic which most people don't delve deep into because it's not fancy enough. Most of us have a rough idea about it, pick an encoding which sounds good enough and hack luckily away at our code. Then, the code is opened by a different user using a different editor ...
Everyone has had problems with characters all of a sudden looking like gobbledy gook and have found some solution to it. Or perhaps not? How many have seen JavaDoc headers an author tag where the "å" in "Håkon" looking like Donald Duck's swearing?
Character sets and encoding are fundamental concepts of every software project you'll ever work on and having a better understanding of it will help you investigate, solve and even avoid encoding related problems in all parts and layers of your code. This talk will give you a fresh reminder of some of the things you already know and teach you a few new things so that next time you see a square, you don't look like a question mark.
Torstein Krause Johansen
Passionate Java, BASH, Python, UNIX and GNU/Linux craftsman with a keen interest in web standards - and Emacs. Writes code in Escenic R&D.