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BrailleMaster Q&A and Tips

How come the LOUIS rules look strange when I load them in Word for Windows for editing? They look like a mess of funny characters to me...

You can certainly use Word for Windows for editing LOUIS rules (although you might be better off using BrailleMaster's own editor which has been conveniently provided for this purpose).

The rules supplied with BrailleMaster use special default characters for the various LOUIS symbols. These are character codes higher than 128. The reason for this choice is to be able to translate punctuation characters, such as | { } ~ as well. (Obviously, if these punctuation characters were used as special symbols in Rule Files, they couldn't be treated and translated like normal characters.)

Unfortunately, under Windows, there is no fixed standard how these "upper 128" characters are to be shown. Their definition varies depending on the font selected and can range from special symbols to Greek or other national alphabet characters.

Hence, a rule which you would expect might look somewhat like this:

|~{H}EREFORD| -**-*-

might look more like this:

│¨■H■EREFORD│ -**-*-

The rule works, but is not very readable, because "|" has been replaced by "│", "■" is used as both left and right text delimiter, etc.

The answer is to always use a font which shows the special "upper 128" characters consistently and legibly. Two such recommended fonts are ASCII Serif and ASCII Sans Serif. If you don't have them on your system, you can download them from here.

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