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> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of steve rice
> > > Unicode will marginalize workarounds, making this
> > > matter unimportant again, as it mostly was before
> > > computers.
> > 
> > The problem is just what you mentioned, "over
> > time".  How much time
> > has to pass?  I remember first hearing of Unicode around
> > 1990 and
> > the first published version was in 1991.  Here we are 17
> > years later
> > and Unicode support is barely taking root.  We still have a
> > long way
> > to go before support is anywhere near universal.
> 
> The most common areas are reasonably well covered, as Risto 
> observed. Back in 2000 or thereabouts I housesat for an 
> elderly friend who had just bought a very cheap, no-frills 
> computer. I decided to check some Eo sites, and the Unicode 
> displayed correctly without any tweaking on my part. 
> Presumably Unicode has progressed since then.

If by "most common areas" you mean web browsers, then yes.
Otherwise it's a hit-and-miss (more miss than hit) situation.  I
have Outlook 2003, but if I send Unicode it will show "?????".
Interestingly, I didn't have this problem before I "upgraded" to
2003.  I've found lots of software that just doesn't support
Unicode, or supports it only on certain levels.  For example, some
software may still have issues with right-to-left scripts.  Smaller
devices are less likely, but I was pleasantly surprised that both
handheld MP3 players (including my dreaded IPOD) that I'd tried
seemed to work.  I've since given up on expensive MP3 players like
that and installed a head unit into my new car which supports a USB
hard drive.  It recognizes Unicode in the ID3 tags but apparently
converts them to another 8-bit encoding for display because it won't
allow Cyrillic to be mixed with Roman characters that have
diacritics.  This is actually in the owner's manual, and these are
the only scripts mentioned.  I could go on with a really long list
of gadgets that aren't Unicode ready, and just as much of a list of
products that have limited support.

In short, Unicode is a long way from being a universal that we can
rely on.