Re: Unicode in VFAT file system

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Fri Jul 21 2000 - 01:51:00 EDT

Addison Phillips <> wrote:

> Avoiding for the moment the word-parsing that Markus suggests, Unicode
> on Microsoft platforms has always been LE (at least on Intel) and they
> have called the encoding they use "UCS-2" (when they bothered with
> such things: in the past they always called it "Unicode" as if it were
> the *only* encoding). As Unicode has evolved, Microsoft products have
> become more exact in this regard.

I remember that in the early to mid '90s, before the invention (or at
least widespread use) of UTF-8, UTF-32, and surrogates, *everybody* --
not just Microsoft -- used the term "Unicode" to refer to what we would
now call UCS-2. Even the Unicode Consortium did this! And even now,
the few of my co-workers who know about Unicode (I'm trying to spread
the word, folks, honest) think a "Unicode text file" is UCS-2 by
definition. I don't know what they would think of a UTF-8 file --
nobody but me is knowingly using them yet. In any case, this usage is
by no means confined to Microsoft.

-Doug Ewell
 Fullerton, California

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