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Author Topic: Text characters dispayed as boxes - Windows 1252?  (Read 2573 times)

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Offline AprilD

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Text characters dispayed as boxes - Windows 1252?
« on: March 15, 2010, 04:50:27 pm »
Hi all! I posted a problem I'm having over at the SMF forums. I got a good answer but I'm still looking for a better solution and I was hoping you lovely people would be able to help.

First off: We're running SMF 1.1.11 with the following Mods:
1. Aeva Media 1.0     
2. Version Emulate Dropdown 1.1   
3. Password Protect Boards 0.2     
4. SimplePortal 2.3.1   
5. Favicon 1.3   
6. Admin Notepad 2.0   
7. Global Headers Footers 2.0   
8. Ignore Another User 1.1
9. Hide Unused Profile Display Fields

The problem:

At our forum we have writers. Writers that write a lot in Word processing programs and then copy and paste to share their writing. For some, the apostrophes, quote marks, ellipses all get replaced with funky characters, but more often than not, it's boxes.

I'll screen cap here with the text blurred out. This is a section of dialogue:


The only problem is that after the user posts, they look over their post and it looks fine to them. (I think they are running firefox or IE depends on which browser they submit in). But for me who is using IE8, even in compatibility mode, these boxes are showing up.

It's become frustrating because in some cases there's a lot of text to go through and we aren't really sure what's causing the problem since some browsers aren't showing this problem.

The answer I received which I believe is the case is this:

Ah, bingo! This only will happen with Microsoft word processors, such as "Word". You have the "smart quotes" so-called feature enabled. When you type in a ' or " (or many other special punctuation characters), Word "helpfully" replaces it with a typographically correct symbol (proper opening and closing quotes, etc.). While this looks nice on paper, the characters used are not standard encodings -- they are found in CP-1252 and nowhere else (not Latin-1, not UTF-8, etc.). So, your browser will tell you that it can't figure out what these characters are supposed to be rendered as (i.e., replaces them with a box).

For the existing posts, you have to go back and manually edit them to change the bogus characters to something standard. For new posts, turn off "smart quotes" in your word processor.
Link here to page: http://www.simplemachines.org/community/index.php?topic=370839.0

SO... he gave me a couple suggestions... have all my members change their word processors (which I will have to continue to teach until we don't get any more new writers) OR some how change the language or the way the site is displayed. I said that this is the first it is happening and I've been on message boards copying and pasting forever. And I was told the other boards I was on were probably displaying in CP1252 or Windows 1252.

Well... I want that. How do I do it? Is an impossible feat? Any help or know how would be greatly appreciated.


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