Character Coding UTF-8 For Your Browser

Character Coding UTF-8 For Your Browser

You have seen some strange non-English characters here and there that come out looking like scrambled eggs on your browser? That’s probably because your browser is trying to read Russian (“русский”) or Japanese (“日本語”) or Chinese (“中國”) or Arabic (“العربية”) or Thai (“ภาษาไทย”) or whatever language with an ASCII English-only character code. I know, that’s Greek (“Ελληνική”) to you, right? Well, there is a way out that is not very strenuous.

For Firefox since at least version 11:

  1. Click on the dropdown main menu item “View” and choose…
  2. “Character coding” or something similar (it is the 5th item down in the dropdown list)
  3. and then select “Unicode” which is the first one below “automatic”
  4. and you are finished!

For Internet Explorer since at least version 9:

  1. On the top line of instructions, click on “View”
  2. Then move your cursor down the drop-down menu to “Encoding” (this is the 8th item down the list)
  3. Go down to the 3rd item “Unicode (UTF-8)” and click on it. Repeat the exercise if the line “left-to-right document” is not already checked
  4. … and you’re done!

If you use Chrome or Safari or Tor or something else, the procedure should be roughly the same.

Now you will be able to see all the characters for all the European languages plus all the others that are covered by UTF-8 (includes specifically all Latin-character, Greek-character, and Cyrillic-character languages). You can find more information at Wikipedia if you need any help at or in an appropriate language if English does not help you.

The original version was published on 24 April 2012 on LMDY.CH.