You just got a text message from your friend, and it contains three emojis and a box with an X in it: 🍴🌙 ⌧. Is that an emoji, too? What were they trying to say? Are they currently eating dinner under the moonlight, or are they inviting you to have takeout tonight?
Later in the day, you’re scraping information from a website that happens to have characters in another language on it, and as you pull data into your terminal, you start to notice more little boxes with X’s in them. Or perhaps your terminal renders them as � or 🥡. What does this all mean? Why are these symbols following you around?
You’ve just encountered “notdef”! This is the official term for the “Not Defined” symbol that is shown when the typeface being used doesn’t contain the character requested. This talk aims to show you what you can do in the face of notdef, including how you can build a little tool to search your machine for fonts that support the characters you need to tell your story – whether you’re using a design app to make a poster, or writing a paper that contains information in a non-Latin language.