How are special characters displayed in HTML?
Our HTML content uses the Unicode Character Set to identify characters which are not part of the standard Latin character sets/symbols. We do this to extend the range of characters and symbols that can be displayed using an Internet Browser such as Explorer or Firefox. Many of our journals contain highly specialised content requiring character sets/symbols that are specifically for and unique to a subject area. However Internet Browsers and available fonts place limitations on the number of specialist characters that can be displayed correctly.
Support for Unicode depends on the type and version of the browser being used and the fonts installed on an individuals machine. These are configuration issues over which we have no control, so consequently the same article may display correctly for someone with a specialist font or latest browser but incorrectly for someone with a default font or older browser. In order to minimise this discrepancy we have defined a set of Unicode characters that display correctly in the browsers that CJO supports using the default font Arial (on a PC) and Ventura (on Mac), characters that are not in this set are replaced by images of the character or symbol. If this was not done, unsupported characters would display as an empty rectangle, not display at all or display the default behaviour for the browser being used. This has the advantage of enabling users to display the maximum number of unsupported characters. However, it also means that the level is set to a low threshold so users with specialist fonts that could view the special characters will still see the images rather than the Unicode character. There can also be mismatches in the style of the character if it should appear inside an word that is italic or bold. As browsers increase their support for Unicode we will be able to reduce the use of images in the HTML and we hope that this approach will enable you to get the most out of the HTML content.
More detail on operating systems and browsers requirements is available in our help files or please consult your browser information.