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Old 03-06-2008, 10:10 AM   #1
horseyride
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Removing smart quotes

Is there any easy way to remove smart quotes (translate them into straight quotes) from a text file? I tried bookdesigner which cleans up lots of stuff, but it leaves those in, as far as I can tell....Is there an option I'm missing to remove that and kill em-dashes as well? thanks
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Old 03-06-2008, 10:20 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by horseyride View Post
Is there any easy way to remove smart quotes (translate them into straight quotes) from a text file? I tried bookdesigner which cleans up lots of stuff, but it leaves those in, as far as I can tell....Is there an option I'm missing to remove that and kill em-dashes as well? thanks
To remove the smart quotes, just copy the quote and do a search/replace with a straight quote. Do it twice. Once for each direction. And while you are at it, might as well do a set of search/replaces for smart apostrophes as well.
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Old 03-06-2008, 10:23 AM   #3
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You could simply do a search and replace. I am, however, a little puzzled as to why you would want to do this. Replacing quotes is reasonable--smart quotes don't display correctly in some codepages--but you certainly should NOT be getting rid of dashes--they are a fundamental part of the book's formatting.
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Old 03-06-2008, 10:29 AM   #4
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You could simply do a search and replace. I am, however, a little puzzled as to why you would want to do this. Replacing quotes is reasonable--smart quotes don't display correctly in some codepages
There are different language conventions also. It would be nice if you tagged text instead so you can choose which quote to use in the reader. For example: <q>He said <q>fish</q>!</q>

Or is smart quotes something that display quotes correctly depending on language setting?
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Old 03-06-2008, 10:32 AM   #5
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There are different language conventions also. It would be nice if you tagged text instead so you can choose which quote to use in the reader. For example: <q>He said <q>fish</q>!</q>

Or is smart quotes something that display quotes correctly depending on language setting?
"Smart quotes" are "curly quotes". Most files which use them use either UTF-8 or the Windows Latin 1 (1252) codepage. Unfortunately people who use other codepages generally won't see them displayed correctly.
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Old 03-06-2008, 10:35 AM   #6
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And don't forget the curly apostrophes as well. Those can also be a problem.

But I have never heard of anyone having a problem with em dashes being there. Just a problem with them not being there.
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Old 03-06-2008, 11:09 AM   #7
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And don't forget the curly apostrophes as well. Those can also be a problem.

But I have never heard of anyone having a problem with em dashes being there. Just a problem with them not being there.
Well an emdash is certainly not in the ascii character set. It really has the same problem with certain font sets and code sets as curly apostrophes and quotes do.

Dale
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Old 03-06-2008, 11:27 AM   #8
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Well an emdash is certainly not in the ascii character set. It really has the same problem with certain font sets and code sets as curly apostrophes and quotes do.

Dale
It does indeed - it's in different character positions in codepage 1252 and UTF-8. That's why, I think, in plain text files it's best to do as PG do and represent it as "--". This can easily be replaced with a "real" dash on other systems. In HTML, provided one represents it as the "&mdash;" entity, there's no problem.
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Old 03-06-2008, 12:08 PM   #9
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To fix em dashes, go to the search & replace (F2) and in the search line put in alt-0151 (from the keypad) and then in the replace line put in -- and it'll replace em dash with -- and you'll know when reading where the em dash was supposed to be.
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