A post from Shady Characters

An aside

I wanted to take a moment to say thank you for all of the tweets, blog posts and comments that have appeared since Shady Characters went live — I’m bowled over by the response! Thank you particularly to Christopher and Nicklas of Web Standardistas and Jean François Porchez for mentioning Shady Characters on their respective sites, to Dom Crayford for submitting it to Hacker News, and to Jon Tan and Mark Pilgrim for their tweets. I’ve read Mark and Jon’s writing in the past, so to be mentioned in their Twitter feeds is amazing.

Stay tuned for more on the pilcrow — the next entry should appear within the next week or two, if things go according to plan — and yes, for all of the people clamouring for it, the storied interrobang is next!

6 comments on “An aside

  1. Comment posted by Screwtape on

    Came across your Pilcrow article at the bottom of a link-roll at ilovetypography.com, read the article and immediately subscribed. Can’t wait for the next post, thanks for doing the research!

    1. Comment posted by Keith Houston on

      Thanks for the comment! The next entry is in the works and should be ready this coming weekend.

  2. Comment posted by David Harmon on

    Hey, that’s interesting idea for a blog. One other point about the pilcrow is that it’s not in ASCII. It might be interesting sometime to see some history about why certain characters did or didn’t “make the cut” for 7-bit ASCII…..

    1. Comment posted by Keith Houston on

      Hi David — that is indeed an interesting idea. I’ll have to look into it! The history of computing in the ’50s and ’60s is fascinating, and I’ll be covering some of it in a later entry on the ‘@’ symbol.

  3. Comment posted by Ken on

    I will admit I know very little about punctuation, however, as an avid Bible reader (KJV, 1611), I have long pondered the possible purposes for its prolific peppering of pilcrows.
    What I’ve come to believe is that the placement of a pilcrow indicates one of the following: a) an abrupt change of subject, b) missing or maybe questionable text, or c) that any text that follows it is not necessarily chronologically correct.

    That’s my 2 cents, and I’d say that 2 cents for this very subjective opinion is being very generous indeed. :) Ken

    1. Comment posted by Keith Houston on

      Hi Ken — thanks for the comment! Wikipedia suggest that pilcrows in the KJV stand for new paragraphs, but only until Acts, after which the printer seems to have run out of them! It may also stand for textual errors, although I can’t say for sure.

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