[thelist] Removing Microsoft Word special characters

Peter Smulders schmolle at pobox.com
Sun Sep 21 16:36:42 CDT 2003

Hi all,

Bird, Graham wrote:

> Hi,
> Is there a way to strip "smart" quotes, em dashes and ellipses from Word
> copy? (i.e. all "special" Word characters)
> Our editors cut and paste from Word and we get question marks in our HTML. I
> have been hunting high and low for a solution, but there doesn't seem to be
> an easy way to trap the characters. They just appear as the square
> non-character, which as far as I know is impossible to match on.
> Any advice would be great.

For entertainment as well as an effective solution, you might want to 
read Mr. Raymond's rant on this topic[1] and download the associated 



[1] http://www.fourmilab.ch/webtools/demoroniser/
[2] http://www.fourmilab.ch/webtools/demoroniser/demoroniser.zip


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