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Diacritical Symbols

To ensure interoperability and avoid inconsistencies in data, all newly developed eGovernment applications should support Unicode.

Diacritical symbols are characters in the Latin alphabet A-Z that have had diacritical marks like umlauts, accents or ogonek added to them. This also includes special letters, which are commonly found in languages that use the Latin alphabet, such as ligatures. Languages in the neighbouring European countries use more than 400 diacritical symbols. In Austria, the use of diacritical symbols is stipulated by law for civil registers, such as the Central Register of Residents.

In order to work with all the special characters in these languages at the same time, the Unicode character set standard must be adopted. Unicode is recommended by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) as the encoding standard for Web applications on account of its secure future. It is also supported by all mainstream database systems, operation systems and programming languages.

To ensure interoperability and avoid inconsistencies in data, all newly developed eGovernment applications should support Unicode. Applications which are not Unicode-capable should accept Unicode in the Web interface and convert it internally.