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Computing With Accents and Foreign Scripts
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Encoding on the Internet

Much of how browsers interpret foreign language Web sites is dependent on how text is numerically encoded on the Internet. Understanding a little bit about encoding can help you develop foreign language web sites properly.

Use the Next and Prev arrows to go back and forth in the Encoding Section.


  1. Types of Scripts
  2. Computers Do Numbers
  3. ASCII Encoding
  4. 8-bit Encoding
  5. ISO-8859-1/Latin 1
  6. Encoding Non-Roman Scripts
  7. East Asian and 16 Bit Encoding
  8. Unicode
  9. Encoding and Fonts
  10. How Browsers Read a Web Site
  11. How to Mess Up (and Debug) the Browser

Other Sections

Links to Encoding Web Resources

Tips for Developing Non-English Web Sites

Note on References

Much of the material in this tutorial was pulled from the following references. Other links to additional references are included in the appropriate sections.

Ager, Simon (1998-2005) "Omniglot: A Guide to Written Language"

Crystal, David (1997) The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Language. Cambridge University Press.

Czyborra, Roman (2000) "Unicode in the Unix Environment"

Korpela, Jukka (2000-2004) "Theoretical Basis of Character Encoding"

Spolsky, Joel (2003) "The Absolute Minimum Every Software Developer Absolutely, Positively Must Know About Unicode and Character Sets (No Excuses!)"


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Last Modified: Monday, 19-Nov-2012 12:22:13 EST