If English is your native language, then ASCII makes perfect sense. Everything you would ever want to write fits within those 127 characters, and then some. But the moment other languages come onto the scene, you need more characters than ASCII alone can provide. Unicode is standard that tries to provide a unique number, or “code point,” for every character, in every language ever created. How does Unicode work? What are the different encodings, and what are the trade-offs that they offer? In this talk, Harry H. Porter III introduces the ideas behind ASCII and Unicode, and how they work.