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Accented, umlauted, other characters in e-mail--now you see them, now you don't!

Use Character set ISO 8859-1 everywhere on your CPU and in your mailer online. (If not available, use ISO Latin-1.)
Note: Accented characters are in the so-called extended character set, 8-bit. A document containing them must usually be transferred as an 8-bit binary file (not as a 7-bit text file) unless it is coded -- in this case, the recipient must have the corresponding decoder which converts the seeming text file back into a binary file, complete with accents or whatever.
One pair of small utilities, available for downloading, is uuencode/uudecode. Create a file, e.g., testfile.doc, then enter 'uuencode testfile.doc' which gives you a file called testfile.uue. Upload and send or mail it: it's an ascii or text file. The recipient must have uudecode.exe; he enters 'uudecode testfile.uue' to get the original testfile.doc, complete with accents or whatever.
Another more direct way to send files that can include not only symbols but also images, sound etc. is to use an application supporting MIME. Mime also encodes and decodes documents but does so automatically, saving an extra step when sending or receiving. Naturally, both sender and recipient must use a Mime-capable application such as the mailer Pine or Eudora. Eudora exists for all platforms and can be downloaded and installed.
Both sender and recipient must use either ASCII or ANSI: you cannot mix the two. You also must not strip the 8th bit. Check your setup. Check the header of the file you have trouble with.
To prepare text that includes French, German, Spanish in Windows, set your keyboard to US International: open the Control Panel in the Main group, doubleclick the International icon, change Keyboard Layout to US International, click OK. Now use Word, Write, Notepad to type your text. See In Windows ... below.

If using a foreign language keyboard for composing a file to upload to a web site or to e-mail, the recipient may need to install the same keyboard or character set to see anything other than gobbledygook.

Get the FAQs on MIME

The Mime Information Page

Get the FAQs

ISO Latin1 for HTML and good info. on non-Western alphabets

Newsgroups:
Topic                   Newsgroup               Comments

Programming for I18N    comp.unix.questions,... see section 16.

Nordic graphemes        soc.culture.nordic,...  nordic letters

accents sur Usenet      soc.culture.french,...  accents (French)

Basics of computer fonts


Extended character set:

Many are still struggling with this. See http://www.ibiblio.org/sergei/Software/Software.html

Use Character set ISO 8859-1 everywhere: in the word processor on your CPU and in your mailer online. (If not available, use ISO Latin-1.)

In the ACC, use the VAX machines with green monitors to see accents.

If using DOS mskermit, when logging on, at the ms-Kermit> prompt, type set display 8 before you type connect.

For German, you may find ss for ess-zet, "+a or ae for a-umlaut, etc.

There is no standard yet when the extended character set is used. I find that on some servers I can read the text just fine on the screen when I log on with protocol 7,1,Even but can no longer read it after downloading it to the UNIX-unless I change the protocol to 8,1,None (this may be done while one is logged on). Load your downloaded file into Windows Write without conversion, then save as a *.wri file, using a Windows TrueType font with the correct character set, such as CourierNew or TimesNewRoman or Arial. 


The International Keyboard in Windows (for Germanic & Romance languages):

Doubleclick ControlPanel, International, click Keyboard Layout, select US-International, click OK. (At this point you may be prompted to insert a Windows disk that contains the needed driver.)
Use a common Windows font, such as Courier or Arial, that has the full character set.

see images of layouts

International Phonetic Alphabet
IPA/API (International Phonetic Association)


Prof. Ursula Hoffmann, 3/2001 -- rev. 3/2005