Alexander Mayrhofer alexander.mayrhofer at
Thu Dec 3 09:42:41 CET 2009

 > thank you for once more putting all this right! I am 
> constantly shaking my head because people believe to know how 
> little the German users would need the ß and its distinction 
> from ss. 

I am a native German speaker, and my opinion is that "ß" is probably the mose useless character in German script. It's definitely not as important as "ö", "ü" and "ä". The distinction from "ss" is only of real importance to teachers, because it provides them a nice way to torture their pupils.

I was pretty good at grammer before the grammar reform in 1996, and i got most of it right for the other cases - but i have essentially given up to differentiate between "ss" and "ß" - honestly, i'm leaving it up to Winword if it's important text. And almost everybody i know is doing the same. *Everybody* understands what you mean with "Strasse" and "Fuss". The only reasonable argument for "ß" is trademarks and person names. 

And please don't get me started about the capital "ß". The swiss did it right. 

> In my opinion IDNA should try to enable as many 
> letters (!) as possible anyway, but if one is trying to 
> assess the relevance of the ß, then shouldn't be the actual 
> usage of it the most relevant and objective factor?

I agree to that - can we please remove all the mis-spellings before counting ? ;-)


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