APL Characters in Email

APL has been dogged by problems (both real and perceived) stemming from the character set - ironic, given APL's original design goal of improving communication between people.

An aspect of this has been the tyranny of the 7-bit ASCII character set (and this still obstructs UseNet APL posting) But for regular Internet email the problem has really gone away, although you might not realise it from the messages regularly posted by the APL hardcore.

This document summarises my experiences to data, it is not exhaustive and is restricted to use with Dyalog APL (although there seems to be no reason why it shouldn't also apply to other APLs).

The Advantages of APL-embedded Email

The Problems of APL-embedded Email

Selecting an Email Client

We need to use an email client which is comfortable with HTML mail, some of those tried are:

Character Problems

There are some APL characters which seem to have a rendering problem in HTML, those identified are:

      trouble ซ
€€€€€ „… left-tack
žžžžž „… cup 
||||| „… stile 
ญญญญญ „… match 

They don't render very well here either, but the good news is that they do transfer back from the email body into an APL session quite successfully.

Using Mozilla Thunderbird

Composing and sending a message containing APL using Mozilla Thunderbird is quite straightforward:

Other Approaches


Copyright ฉ Dogon Research 2003; Latest Update: 10 December 2003 10:38