Pete's Log: spring cleaning, postponed log entry edition

Entry #1634, Tue, May 26, 2009, 10:24 CEST (Random Crap)
(posted when I was 30 years old.)

In an effort to remove some digital clutter from my life, here are the contents of several postponed log entries. To maximize efficiency in clutter reduction, I have performed no additional formatting beyond the horizontal rules between postponed entries. Context? You don't need no stinking context!

  1. Garamond or Georgia?
    Garamond is a historical typeface, Georgia was developed by Microsoft.
  2. When winword.exe autocorrects my American Englisch spelling to British English spelling, I start feeling stabby.

Things I miss:

  • Flashing gang signs at my coworkers
  • monday morning football talk

Quotes from the news: "Ms Tankard Reist said it was hard to talk about art restoring dignity when another image in the magazine showed a woman being given oral sex by an octopus."

4 american states are larger than germany: Alaska, Texas, California, and Montana.

On the other hand, the most populous American state has less than half the population of Germany.

According to google web history, I perform the fewest web searches between 3 and 4 am. The most web searches occur between 3 and 4 pm.

This doesn't entirely correlate to my blogging activity. Here, the peak is actually between midnight and 1 am, with the low being between 6 and 7 am. I suspect that in part this is skewed by google web history going back fewer years.

Also, I apparently did a search once for "pontificated his octopus" which doesn't seem to bring much in the way of relevant results.

Episodes of the Daily Show with Brian Williams as guest are the bestest.

Heh. We got this log file. Page down a few times, and it suddenly changes to Chinese characters. Page down a few more, and it's back to English. And so on. Alternating blocks of English and Chinese.

Odd. Here's your first chance to guess what's happening.

Here's a hint: we had opened it in Windows Notepad.

Next, we opened the file in another editor. Now the first block of text looks like garbage, but if we scroll down a few pages, we get a block of regular-looking English.

Figure it out?

The garbage we saw at the top in the other editor was actually alternating ASCII characters and NUL special characters. The log file was saved in alternating blocks of Unicode and ANSI encodings.

Notepad famously tries to guess the encoding and correctly recognizes that the first block of text is Unicode (probably... I think UTF-16, given the double-byte representation of the ASCII characters, but I'm no expert on character encodings). Then when Notepad gets to the block that's stored in ANSI, it keeps processing as Unicode, and hence every two ASCII characters get interpreted as one Unicode character, resulting in Chinese characters.

Our other editor opens the file in plain ANSI mode, interpreting all characters as single byte characters.

Unless we receive more files of this nature in the future, I suspect the easiest solution will be to copy alternating blocks of text out of the two separate editors, depending on which one gets the particular block right.

I don't think any of the editors we have offer an easy solution, given that one normally expects a single file to use consistent encoding. But maybe some

Yes, that last entry really ended mid sentence. I have no idea where I was going with that thought.

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Comments for this log entry

decluttering by Nairubi (Wed, June 10, 2009, 08:53)