joel on software writes:

When I discovered that the popular web development tool PHP has almost complete ignorance of character encoding issues, blithely using 8 bits for characters, making it darn near impossible to develop good international web applications, I thought, enough is enough.

to say PHP's character encoding deficiencies make it "darn near impossible to develop good international web applications" is only partially true. the only thing you really can't do with PHP and non-ASCII character sets is edit text (and you can even do that in some very limited ways). but there's nothing stopping anyone from writing a good international web application in PHP, so long as that application doesn't require text editing.

take my daily japanese lessons for an example. i won't be so bold as to suggest this qualifies as a good international web application, but i use PHP to post new lessons, display lessons, and organize lessons, all with non-ASCII text. i won't say it wouldn't be nice to be able to edit my lessons through a web interface, but that's not such a problem that i can't work around it. i get the impression joel hasn't actually tried to develop an international web application with PHP before declaring it "darn near impossible".


thank you to my instant friend, ann maria bell, who pointed out to me that the ladybug-esque creatures moving in with me are asian lady beetles.

i failed to mention that these ladies greatly prefer our south windows, which are likely the warmest part of our building.

it sounds cute, but ann sent me some bad news and some worse news. the bad news: they bite. the worse news: i was wrong about the frost displacing them. they're staying the winter.

i'll complain, but i won't try to poison them. that would be a hopeless battle with too great a cost, as ecologists have known since before they were called ecologists, rachel carson being one whose work i recommend.

so, if you're feeling overrun by asian lady beetles or any other pest, think about what you're poisoning before you take action.