[Tex/LaTex] Is \aa or å preferred

best practicesinput-encodings

This question is about all the non-ascii characters, å is only as an example.

I know you can type the character å two ways:

Some text with a speciål character.


Some text with a speci\aa l character.

Which both generate the same result. However which method is preferred or best practice?

I'm using pdflatex if it makes any difference.

Best Answer

inputenc defines å to expand (more or less) to \aa so it really makes no difference, most people prefer the inputenc form if writing in a language that has non-ascii characters. What is more important is that whatever input form you use, you have \usepackage[T1]{fontenc} so hyphenation of words using such characters works correctly.

One place where it does make a difference is if you use bibtex it is generally better to use \aa (and in general forms such as {\"a} as bibtex doesn't deal well with UTF-8 (or any other non-ascii encoding).

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