[OS X TeX] Default Encoding

Richard Koch koch at math.uoregon.edu
Fri Jan 14 19:38:38 CET 2011


On Jan 14, 2011, at 8:37 AM, Alan Munn wrote:

> Not to open a can of worms (I feel this has been discussed before), but is there any reason why the default encoding in TeXShop is MacRoman instead of UTF-8?  Using UTF-8 makes switching between different platforms a lot easier, and also saves any grief for first-time XeLaTeX (and soon LuaLaTeX) users.
> Alan

I suspect Latin1 would have been a better choice than MacRoman, but here's
the reason I didn't choose UTF-8:

Most mathematicians I know work with ordinary TeX or LaTeX. They routinely
receive source code from Europe and elsewhere containing isolated non-ascii 
characters, often just in the bibliography. This source code is
rarely UTF-8.

If the default encoding were UTF-8, these source files wouldn't load at all because the
files contain incorrect UTF-8 code. With any other encoding, any source file looks 
correct to the computer, so source files all load, even though isolated characters may
be wrong.

Users of XeTeX and LuaTeX learn early on about unicode and should be able to
make the required preference adjustment.

Dick Koch

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