This document is not current, and is kept only for archival purposes. Please refer to Everything2 Help for all up-do-date help documents.

There is a very full description of HTML symbols at HTML Symbol Reference. Please refer to that for details about what symbols are available. This document is an attempt to give guidelines for using those symbols on E2.

Problems arise because all browsers are not created equal - the way symbols are displayed is different between Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer, for example. As we want our writeups to look good in either of these (or if they can't look good, at least to be intelligible) some guidelines may be useful. Also, E2 titles are a special case.

At the present time, there are two browsers which see heavy use on the internet, so if someone is reading your writeup, the odds are they're using either Netscape or Internet Explorer.

Netscape itself has two sub-versions. The older, and more popular Netscape 4.x, and the newer and more correctly behaving Mozilla (or Netscape 6.x and up.) Since NS 4.x has much more market share than Mozilla, currently, it's best to try and cater for people using that browser.

Just about all the HTML entities listed under Mathematical, Greek and Symbolic characters for HTML in HTML Symbol Reference will not display properly in NS 4.x - the "long forms" (such as ε) display the actual escape sequence (NS 4.x users see "ε") whereas the "numeric forms" (eg Ε) display as "?". For this reason it's much friendlier to use the long forms. That way, the NS 4.x user can at least see what you mean even if they can't see the character itself.

There are some special cases. For example — has a whole node to itself!

Pick Titles Carefully contains a nice long discussion about special characters in titles, but briefly:
  • Never use HTML tags ("<foo") in titles.
  • Never use HTML entities (of the form "&foo;") in titles.
  • There's a way to get a few special characters in titles, but you need to do it correctly, as discussed in Pick Titles Carefully.
If you want to hardlink to a title with no special characters, but you want the link to appear with the correct characters in your writeup, just use a pipelink.
[Frere Jacques|Frère Jacques]
gives: Frère Jacques.

And, on a related note, if you want to include HTML formatting tags in links, you can use pipelinks also:

gives court-martial. See html formatted hard links for the full treatment of this.

For more HTML nitpickery, see The Nitpicker's Guide to E2 Style and Formatting.

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