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78
votes
7answers
5k views

Why are special characters such as “carriage return” represented as “^M”?

Why is ^M used to represent a carriage return in VIM and other contexts? My guess is that M is the 13th letter of the Latin alphabet and a carriage return is \x0D or decimal 13. Is this the reason? ...
28
votes
7answers
4k views

Why do English characters require fewer bytes to represent than other alphabets?

When I put 'a' in a text file, it makes it 2 bytes but when I put, let's say 'ա', which is a letter from Armenian alphabet, it makes it 3 bytes. What is the difference between alphabets for a ...
24
votes
9answers
21k views

Is there a Pac-Man-like character in ASCII or Unicode?

Simple question: is there a character that looks either like Pac-Man, or like the ghost in Pac-Man? With Google's recent Pac-Man logo, everyone should know what these look like, but in case you don't ...
14
votes
1answer
6k views

Getting  and â characters in linux putty console?

I am very much annoyed by â and  output in manual outputs of most of the commands. Can someone please suggest me workaround? I am using putty in SSH mode and my linux server is customized by Amazon ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

How to input special characters w/o numpad?

How do I type special characters (Alt+0???) in Windows on a laptop without any kind of numeric keyboard (even not one accessed by FN)? Right now I am using the NT 4 charmap (the XP one sucks), but ...
12
votes
8answers
37k views

bash: how to pass command line arguments containing special characters

I've written myself a linux program program that needs a regular expression as input. I want to call the program in the bash shell and pass that regular expression as a command line argument to the ...
11
votes
4answers
12k views

Producing a specific ASCII character in Ubuntu

I'm used to holding the left Alt and entering the ASCII character whenever I'm using an unknown keyboard configuration and want to type a special character. For example, Alt + 0 + 9 + 2 makes a ...
10
votes
6answers
10k views

Trouble trying to use Windows Search to search for file with a question mark in the content

It seems that Windows Search is having trouble when I specify a question mark character as the content that I'm searching for within my files. I've tried: content:? content:"?" content:"\?" ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Linux 'compose' key sequence extensions

Compose key is a great way way to write all these ©–®—… stuff. It's really MUCH more handy than the windows "alt+0169" method. Is there a way to define additional sequences? E.g. I'd like to have ...
8
votes
2answers
7k views

How to use special characters in username/password for HTTP proxy?

I am trying to setup an HTTP proxy on a Windows machine. Problem is, the password has a special character (@) in it that is causing the set command to fail. I have tried both escaping the character ...
7
votes
6answers
5k views

Typing strange letters¿ w/o numpad?

How do i type ♣ (alt+5) and ♥ (alt+259) and other characters like it on a keyboard w/o a numberpad? using the numbers 1-9-0 doesnt activate those characters. Note i want to TYPE and not use that ...
7
votes
2answers
404 views

chrome search in page: accented characters

Searching text inside a webpage (with ctrl-f) for an accented character, for instance è, chromium finds all occurrences of è, é and e. Similarly, searching e finds è and é as well. While it is an ...
7
votes
2answers
12k views

Notepad++ inserting special Unicode characters in UTF-8

What's the best ways to enter special Unicode characters into a Notepad++ document? Do I have to rely on the operating system (Windows)? Looking for a see-and-click solution. I can bring up the ...
7
votes
1answer
8k views

Alt+Numpad key codes on modern Windows laptops without numpad [duplicate]

I am using the Windows Alt+Numpad method a lot on my desktop PC to enter special characters like n-dash (Alt+0150), hard space (Alt+0160), typographic quotes, bullets, etc. This method needs a numpad ...
6
votes
3answers
7k views

How to delete file with this name on linux: -]???????q

Somehow a file named -]???????q got created on my terminal. I tried rm -f "-]???????q" (in double quotes), but it did not get deleted. (Error:: rm: invalid option -- ]). How do I delete it?
6
votes
1answer
4k views

Why can't you use special characters in a filename, like “?” or “;”?

When I try to save a file, if I use special characters in the name (such as a colon, question mark, or exclamation point) in Windows I get a message saying that the file name is invalid. Why is that? ...
6
votes
3answers
7k views

Italian keyboard: entering the tilde (~) and backtick (`) characters without changing keyboard layout

Here is what the layout of an Italian keyboard looks like: As you can see, the curly braces, which are absolutely necessary to write code in any of C, C++, JavaScript, Java, Objective C, and ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Hidden characters inserted after pipe (|) followed by a space

Very often, on my Mac, when I use the pipe (|) character followed by a space character, an invincible character will be inserted in between. This is especially annoying when using the terminal, as it ...
6
votes
1answer
399 views

How to display new line character (^J) in emacs replace query

Say I want to replace all the new lines in my emacs buffer with the character k (wait for the -1, read the rest! :) ). I know I can type M-x replace-string RET C-q C-j RET k. It works fine. My ...
5
votes
4answers
1k views

Why is so hard to use the dash character?

When typing texts on Word, Notepad or even in Google Docs. I want to use the dash symbol. Note that symbol is used in dialogs. All keyboards simply doesn't have the dash symbol (Alt+0151), so most ...
4
votes
3answers
17k views

Is there an Excel formula to identify special characters in a cell?

We have about 3500 documents whose filenames need to be manually scrubbed to remove special characters like brackets, colons, semicolons, commas, etc. I have a text file that I've dumped into excel, ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

How to type special characters like ↑ in windows?

Is it possible without using tools like word and alike?
4
votes
5answers
2k views

How do I find out which language some Unicode characters belong to?

On Facebook, there are currently messages floating around with these strange chars: ก็็็็็็็็็็็็็็็็็็็็ กิิิิิิิิิิิิิิิิิิิิ ก้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้ They are used to confuse the reader, because ...
4
votes
5answers
14k views

Excel destroying special character when saved as CSV

I am working on a project that uses a CSV file supplied by the client to populate a database. The client is to create the spreadsheet, then save it as a CSV to be uploaded, which is then parsed into a ...
4
votes
3answers
5k views

How to configure keyboard shortcuts for special characters on OS X?

How to configure keyboard shortcuts for special character on OS X? For example, one would set ALT+C to ©.
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Cannot type any special character or umlaut in terminal

Environment: I am using Ubuntu 11.10 with wmii 3.9 as GUI and uxterm as terminal with bash as shell. The hardware is a Lenovo ThinkPad W500 with a Swissgerman keyboard layout (thus I need umlauts). I ...
4
votes
2answers
500 views

Text files on linux have “<97>” characters

When viewing a particular text file in vim or less on Linux or OS X, all the en dashes show up as highlighted "<97>" characters. What control-sequence do I need to type in order to substitute the ...
4
votes
3answers
896 views

Is there any way to type the symbol for the Mac CMD key?

I would like to be able to use the symbol for CMD in a document, without requiring an image. Obviously, if the display font doesn't support it there'll be a problem, but given that it's in a document ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Why some unicode characters are missing in charmap?

In Windows, Character Map doesn't seem to display all of the unicode characters, even if the selected font supports them, and "Character set" selector is "Unicode". For example, the small envelope ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Copying Chinese Characters from PDF

I am on a Windows 7 laptop, which I believe comes preinstalled with all the language packs. I can see Chinese characters with no issues and normally can copy them fine. (From browser to Microsoft ...
3
votes
2answers
5k views

use sed to replace nbsp, 160, Hex 00a0, Octal 240, non-breaking space

I am having some problems with config files which have the non-breaking space chars in them. How should I specify that character with sed so I can replace it with a space. sed -n 's/ / /g' ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I format this path to work as registry key value?

C:\Program Files (x86)\DotR\DotR.exe I know I need to escape the backslashes like C:\\Program Files (x86)\\DotR\\DotR.exe but it still doesn't work. Do I need to handle spaces and parens as special ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

White Question Mark in Black Diamond

We are all familiar with the white question mark inside of a black diamond (�) when there is an encoding issue. Does this 'character' have an offical name? Or is it only referred to as the 'white ...
3
votes
1answer
295 views

Mysterious @ character in the Windows Registry

When I navigate to "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Classes\WMP.PlayCD\Shell\Play" in The Windows Registry, I find one REG_EXPAND_SE named MUIVerb on my Windows 7 system. However in its contents it's ...
3
votes
4answers
3k views

Can't paste symbol from Character viewer in Mac to Photoshop

This is extremely annoying: I want to paste in a special symbol in Photoshop using the Character Viewer in Mac. I understand that there are some fonts that do not support these symbols, but when I ...
3
votes
3answers
313 views

Need to sed awk or grep output to extract strings

I have output which looks like this: "vancouver/news/vancouver-voices": { "status": 0, "time": 0, "timestamp": 1371298701 }, "vancouver/news/vancouvers-march-second-annual-success": { ...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

CSV files cant store special characters?

I have read several other questions on this subject but none have an answer which fixes my problem. I have an execel file which is in russian and I need to convert it to CSV without it losing any of ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Search special characters or short mathematical symbols in pdf files

I have Adobe Reader, Okular and Document Viewer as pdf readers. The papers I read are often texts with mathematical formulae, generated by LaTeX. But it seems that searching special characters or ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Insert special characters in Emacs

I use English keyboard and need to type some German letters from time to time. So I defined (global-set-key [?\C-\;] (make-sparse-keymap)) (global-set-key [?\C-\; ?A] [?\x08C4]) ... to insert ...
3
votes
1answer
377 views

Word 2010: How to change the color of non-printable characters?

I would like to edit my document with non-printing characters (formatting marks: white space, paragraph marks, etc) visible. I find them quite distracting for reading, because they are shown in the ...
3
votes
2answers
372 views

Display Null Characters in PuTTy

I have a program which displays incoming data which is delimited by a null character (^A). I am accessing the server it is running on via PuTTY and When I open a log in a text editor these are ...
3
votes
1answer
164 views

Parse by Control Characters

I am trying to parse the output of a command that expects to be writing to the screen. It has data separated by move-to-origin control sequences (for the VT220, ESC[1;1H). I only need the last part ...
3
votes
2answers
861 views

How can I tell Firefox to ignore unprintable characters?

Edit: Summary Apparently the intended character to display in this case is an "en-dash". This page has a table half way down that shows that for the &ndash;, some software will convert the ...
2
votes
2answers
328 views

How is http://d§.cc/ a valid URL?

While browsing online today, I came across the following URL: http://d§.cc/ Somehow it works. In Firefox 3.6/Mac, the browser seems to interpret the URL as: http://xn--d-jca.cc/ In Safari 5/Mac, ...
2
votes
2answers
85 views

How do I find out more about a unicode character I see in Windows?

Came across a character I didn't recognize: ‽ I was interested in knowing more about this character, but on Windows 7 charmap wasn't able to search the pasted-in results (in fact, in that text box, ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Triangular box character used in tmux config

On the wemux readme, there is this image: That's a pretty cool status bar he has there. I can see how it's been done - there's a character that looks something like this: \ ##\ ####\ ######\ ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Alt + Number key combination in notebooks

If you do Alt + 64 in a PC you will get "@" and so on for most characters. I could not find out way yet to use this very helpful resource in notebooks. Can this be done? I would like if possible ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

How to disable inputing characters like ãâà by default in OS X? I just want to simply type ~^`

Is there a solution for OS X 10.6? I don't find it in the system preferences.
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Unrecognized character in filename (linux)

I have a problem accessing file in linux Mint. The reason is obviously the unrecognized character(s) in the filename but none of the techniques I know helped me to rename it. So, here are details: ...
2
votes
2answers
633 views

How to type Czech characters on Windows 7 using CS language with US International Keyboard input mode

I am running Windows 7. I have an Italian keyboard which I keep configured as a US keyboard (I know the positions of characters on my keyboard by heart and use it as though it were a US keyboard ...