Characters in Python

Jan Sundström jansun at
Sun Jun 8 00:39:14 CEST 2003

paul at (Paul Boddie) wrote in message news:

> but an oversight carried over from an earlier time. Anyway, as a point
> of reference it should be noted that ASCII is a 7 bit standard, if not
> officially (but I think it actually is) then for most intents and
> purposes you should consider it to be so. I imagine that you actually
> mean, "Can I work with strings in my own encoding?" With IDLEfork, the
> answer is yes.

You are quite right. It is just that on a Windows implementation it feels
rather surprising not to be able to use anyting but ASCII. I felt set back
to about 1980 at my first confrontation with Python.

> Personally, I think that most people would be better off working with
> Unicode. In IDLEfork you can actually print Unicode objects directly.

Yes, I would also prefer to use unicode. Now it seems that this was a
problem with Python 2.2 which is fixed in Python 2.3. 
Thanks to the answers here I also quickly found the solution I originally
was looking for in the FAQ (I missed it at first), namely setting

     encoding = "utf-8"

in the file

Adapting a program to the locale seems a good idea. 
By the way, where do I find what strings are acceptable names for encodings?

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