What’s the difference between unicode and utf8?


This is an unfortunate misnaming perpetrated by Windows.

Because Windows uses UTF-16LE encoding internally as the memory storage format for Unicode strings, it considers this to be the natural encoding of Unicode text. In the Windows world, there are ANSI strings (the system codepage on the current machine, subject to total unportability) and there are Unicode strings (stored internally as UTF-16LE).

This was all devised in the early days of Unicode, before we realised that UCS-2 wasn’t enough, and before UTF-8 was invented. This is why Windows’s support for UTF-8 is all-round poor.

This misguided naming scheme became part of the user interface. A text editor that uses Windows’s encoding support to provide a range of encodings will automatically and inappropriately describe UTF-16LE as “Unicode”, and UTF-16BE, if provided, as “Unicode big-endian”.

(Other editors that do encodings themselves, like Notepad++, don’t have this problem.)

If it makes you feel any better about it, ‘ANSI’ strings aren’t based on any ANSI standard, either.

Why Is Independence So Frightening To Some People?

In past articles I have examined the nature of power and division in our society and have always come to the same conclusion, that there are only two types of people: the people who want control over others and the people who just want to be left alone. However, there are also subgroups that swim within the boundaries of each end of the spectrum. Often, psychologists and self-help gurus attempt to promote the idea that the defining quality of the average person’s life is whether he is a follower or a leader. I have seen this spectrum applied to every political and social organization.
Continue reading “Why Is Independence So Frightening To Some People?”

The Most Valuable Traits in a Potential Employee, According to Google

Figuring out how to distinguish yourself in a crowded field and land a job is a lifelong career just by itself. If you’re trying to figure out the types of traits that top-tier employers are looking for, you could always ask. Google, at least, seems happy to answer.

In an interview with the New York Times, Google’s senior VP of people operations (read: person who hires everyone else), Laszlo Bock, explains what they’re looking for in a candidate. He starts with what they don’t look for: GPAs, he says, “don’t predict anything.” Furthermore, while a college education is overwhelmingly preferred, the number of people getting jobs at Google without a college degree has grown over time.

Continue reading “The Most Valuable Traits in a Potential Employee, According to Google”