Talk:Escape sequence

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As the inventor of the escape sequence, I caution any reader to forget the current text. It is a much more complicated and significant topic than is apparent here. I'll try to put in a new one in about 2 months

    Bob Bemer

--, 2003-08-24T20:54:23‎

Shame you never made it, Bob! Rest in Peace, and thanks for everything
Bob's obituary at The Register
--, 2005-07-15T14:00:09‎
Bob Bemer's web site is still online. Perhaps this article may help us a bit bringing the WP article into better shape:
That Powerful ESCAPE Character - Key and Sequences - Computer History Vignettes - By Bob Bemer
--Matthiaspaul (talk) 14:35, 22 May 2013 (UTC)


Is it safe to say that, if the term were to be applied to natural languages, then in English, the vowel sound written as "oo" would be termed an escape sequence? I mean, if you consider that, on a keyboard, a shift key press along with another key yields another character, and that can be deemed a hardware escape sequence.
--Jerome Potts (talk) 05:14, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Probably not. While an escape sequence has a different meaning from the other data within which it is embedded, it is also easily recognized by its prefix. It has both different meaning and different structure. Tedickey (talk) 09:51, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Broader meanings[edit]

Escape sequences can be more broadly defined as any change in the interpretation of characters following the escape flag. The oldest reference to an escape sequence is the shift-out/shift-in pair of characters. Made popular by the teletypewriter, the concept was first used to represent lowercase characters as the 5-bit Baudot code did not have enough unique patterns to represent UPPERCASE, LOWERCASE, numbers and punctuation. Later the FIGS and LTRS keys were translated to the current ASCII SO and SI characters. The interpretation of the characters became popular as a way to trigger alternate character sets. HP terminals such as the early 2640 used not only SO and SI for character sets, but used the actual ASCII escape character (ESC or hex 1B) to begin a sequence of one or more characters. Ranging from display character changes (enhancements) such as dim, underline, blinking, to XY positioning of the cursor on the screen, to complete graphics control of the screen. These codes were the beginning of the most pervasive printer language in the industry: PCL

In shell programming, it is common for the backslash character "\" to change the standard meaning of the next character. For example, the double quote " character can have one meaning by itself but \" removes the normal meaning. The \n sequence is translated by shells and other text filters such as awk and printf as the newline character. Pooderbill (talk) 00:59, 2 September 2011 (UTC)

None of this is sourced. Without proper sourcing, it's original research and/or synthesis, which has no place here. --Orange Mike | Talk 14:08, 2 September 2011 (UTC)
To clarify, the notion that the existing content of this topic is a part of some wider, generally accepted notion of escaping is lacking sources (and since the only discussion that I've seen relating to that is general random comments by random people, it's not guaranteed that there will be useful reliable sources). TEDickey (talk) 21:35, 2 September 2011 (UTC)
As source (related to séquence d'échappement and caractère d'échappement):


This page is really lacking examples of escape sequences. I found my way here from the Control character page which has the following:

For example, the sequence of code 27, followed by the printable characters "[2;10H", would cause a DEC VT-102 terminal to move its cursor to the 10th cell of the 2nd line of the screen.

I expected to see more examples, or a link to examples for escape sequences. The Control character page has a better explanation of Escape sequences than this page, and it doesn't even belong there as much as here. I'd like to propose an Examples section of common escape sequences that a person might usually run into (i.e. color escape sequences or cursor movement sequences). It would help make sense of this article and what it's talking about. Martinemde (talk) 07:47, 22 January 2012 (UTC)

Probably not - Wikipedia already has guidelines recommending against making this a manual or how-to. There are existing WP:RS sources which do this, and Wikipedia's guidelines recommend using those TEDickey (talk) 11:21, 22 January 2012 (UTC)
Added ISO example sequence. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:20, 2 August 2012 (UTC)