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Re: Is the single quote character the same as an apostrophe



On Tue, 2008-06-03 at 21:44 +0200, Nigel Henry wrote:
> Is the single quote the same as an apostrophe?

No, but a lot of things use them for the same thing.  In plain old
ASCII, you didn't have any alternative (only one character was
available, and it was used for both purposes).  With Unicode, you can
use the proper typographical symbols (opening and closing single quotes,
apostrophes, and accent marks are all *different* *things*).

Depending on your keyboard options, the ' key on the keyboard might type
an ASCII apostrophe (as I've just done) when you type it, or ยด when you
hit the ' key twice (using a compose feature).

> If not, where do I find the apostrophe character.

There's the character map utility for things like that, you can search
in it for "apostophe," rather than have to browse through it.  Using a
good font which draws them all differently will help you work out what's
what, elsewhere.

It's common enough, particularly for British keyboard users (thanks to
the layout of the keyboard), to wrongly use the ` (grave accent) instead
of ' (ASCII apostrophe) character.  Likewise, it's common for people to
wrongly use it as an opening single quote character.

Which apart from looking crap, doesn't work well with speech
synthesisers, or anything else which treats characters as what they were
actually typed as, rather than what they might look like.  Is what
you're typing actually meant to use an "apostrophe" in the first place?

It's about time keyboards were re-designed.  We've got mostly useless
arrays of function keys (hardly anybody uses more than the F1 key, in
the grand scheme of things), yet most of the proper punctuation marks
are completely absent, and require cryptic and varying techniques to
type them.

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