Non-alphanumeric characters in tags


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Non-alphanumeric characters in tags

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gen. 23, 2010, 8:19am

I currently use /, #, ~ to prefix some of my tags (listed in the sort order in which they display on the tags page).

'#' for series number and series name
'/' for 'type' (which is a broad catch-all)
'no prefix' for the category or genre
'~' for a few special things, such as currently reading, or whether a series is complete

I'm just about to start using * to separate out the category: fiction, non-fiction, reference or non-specific.

Some questions: Will * or # screw up searching? Same question for '?' if I decide to start using that. Any idea on the basis for the sort order?

And finally, I want something other than 'non-specific' for things that don't fit in the fiction/non-fiction/reference piles - such as puzzle books.

gen. 23, 2010, 8:25am

I've had bad experiences with slashes. Taking a look at your library, I do find that trying to go to a tag page from one of your tags using a slash leads to a 404 error.

gen. 23, 2010, 8:33am

Wish I'd asked the question a bit earlier! I've just moved a bunch to use slash. I'll experiment.

gen. 23, 2010, 8:38am

Backslash just disappears. '|' (broken bar on my keyboard, but displaying as vertical bar) seems to work, and sorts before ~.

Editat: gen. 23, 2010, 2:16pm

# sorts before numerals which sort before ? which sorts before @ - I use those in those in my library.

ETA more info.

gen. 23, 2010, 4:05pm

>5 macsbrains:

Thanks for that info. I wasn't going to experiment to find out how things worked, but I'd never have guessed that numerics sort separately from alphas.

So that gives the following order (with / and backslash excluded because they break stuff):


gen. 24, 2010, 2:24pm

There's a difference between sort and search. Some work for sorting but not searching.

. doesn't search (though it used to)
! does

I don't know where they fit into the sort order, but both are before ~ and / which are the only other ones I use.

gen. 24, 2010, 7:41pm

& doesn't work real well in tags, either.

gen. 24, 2010, 9:16pm

I'm pretty sure that sorting order is determined by the character map. This is a typographical construct into which all computer fonts are structured. When you type any character, as far as I can tell, the computer doesn't really see a letter, number or punctuation as wee do, but instead sees the Nth character. Common puntuation comes first on the character map, then numbers, then letters, then less-common punctuation, then non-standard characters and really weird stuff. To see this character map structure, open a typical word processor, like Word or OpenOffice, go to the Insert menu, and click on "Symbol..." or "Special Character...", whichever you have there. I think sorting/alphabetization is always done in the order displayed on this grid.

As for what characters are okay to use, I would try to avoid any punctuation you see in web addresses or with a special function on LT. Into the former category, I'd place slash, backslash, colon, and period. I'm not sure about hash (#) or question mark, as they do appear as special characters in addresses sometimes. Into the latter category, comma and pipe (|), since commas separate tags and pipes indicate "OR" in a search. I've had mixed success with ampersands (&)--they seem to work except when clicking the tag in a search heading, as opposed to clicking it where it appears on a book or your list of tags, both of which work. Tilde (~) seems to work just fine.

gen. 25, 2010, 1:28am

! sorts before alphabetic characters, but I'm not sure where exactly as I havent used the other non-alphabetics before.

gen. 25, 2010, 4:10pm

The # does work i use to indicate a series order.

gen. 26, 2010, 12:59am

@ works in tags.

feb. 25, 2010, 11:54pm

And underscore _ works too - I use _, @, ! and ~ (back when I started using it, everything else messed up either search or click - I think some have been better escaped since then). I know / and & will cause trouble, and I'm pretty sure + will too.