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Unicode to the Rescue

A far-reaching solution to toggling among these character sets and encodings has recently emerged: Unicode is a vast uber-character set that contains 49,194 characters from the world's major languages.

In Unicode, every character is represented by a unique number, which avoids any possibility of character conflicts among various languages. Unicode support has been included in Microsoft Windows since Windows 95, and in MacOS since version 8.5. However, it is still not widely used on Web pages due to lack of support from older Web browsers (although over time, this is increasingly less a concern) and because many users may not have Unicode fonts on their systems. Gradually, though, it's becoming increasingly common to specify Unicode as the character encoding for Web pages, especially when content in several different languages must appear in the same document:

<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8">
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