Introduction to Python Unicode Error
In Python, Unicode is defined as a string type for representing the characters which allows the Python program to work with any type of different possible characters. For example any path of the directory or any link address as a string. When we use such string as a parameter to any function there is a possibility of occurrence of an error. Such error is known as Unicode error in Python. We get such error because any character after Unicode escape sequence (“ \u ”) produces an error which is a typical error on windows.
Working of Unicode Error in Python with Examples
Unicode standard in Python is the representation of characters in code point format. These standards are made to avoid ambiguity between the characters specified which may occur Unicode errors. For example, let us consider “ I ” as roman number one and it can be even considered as the capital alphabet “ i ” they both look the same but they are two different characters with a different meaning to avoid such ambiguity we use Unicode standards.
In Python, Unicode standards have two types of error they are Unicode encode error and Unicode decode error. In Python, it includes the concept of Unicode error handlers. These handlers are invoked whenever a problem or error occurs in the process of encoding or decoding the string or given text. To include Unicode characters in Python program we first use Unicode escape symbol \u before any string which can be considered as a Unicode-type variable.
Unicode characters in Python program can be written as follows:
In the above syntax, we can see 3 different ways of declaring Unicode characters. In Python program we can write Unicode literals with prefix either “u” or “U” followed by a string containing alphabets and numerical where we can see above two syntax examples. At the end last syntax sample we can also use the “\u” Unicode escape sequence to declare Unicode characters in the program. In this we have to note that using “\u” we can write string containing any alphabet or numerical but when we want to declare any hex value then we have to “\x” escape sequence which takes two hex digits and for octal it will take digit 777.
Now let us see an example below for declaring Unicode characters in the program.
# -*- coding: latin-1 -*-
print("The value of the above unicode literal is as follows:")
In the above program, we can see the sample of Unicode literals in python program but before that, we need to declare encoding which is different in different versions of Python, and in this program, we can see in the first two lines of the program.
Now we will see the Unicode errors such as Unicode encoding Error and Unicode decoding errors which are handled by Unicode error handlers are invoked automatically whenever the errors are encountered. There are 3 typical errors in Python Unicode error handlers.
Strict error in Python raises UnicodeEncodeError and UnicodeDecodeError for encoding and decoding errors that are occurred respectively.
UnicodeEncodeError demonstration and its example.
In Python, it cannot detect Unicode characters and therefore it throws an encoding error as it cannot encode the given Unicode string.
In the above program, we can see we have passed the argument to the str() function which is a Unicode string. But this function will use the default encoding process ASCII. As we can see in the above statement we have not specified any encoding at the starting of this program and therefore it throws an error and the default encoding that is used is 7-bit encoding and it cannot recognize the characters that are outside the 0 to 128 range. Therefore, we can see the error that is displayed in the above screenshot.
The above program can be fixed by encoding Unicode string manually such as .encode(‘utf8’) before passing the Unicode string to the str() function.
In this program, we have called str() function explicitly which may again throw an UnicodeEncodeError.
a = u'café'
b = a.encode('utf8')
r = str(b)
print("The unicode string after fixing the UnicodeEncodeError is as follows:")
In the above we can show how we can avoid UnicodeEncodeError manually by using .encode(‘utf8’) to the Unicode string.
Now we will see UnicodeDecodeError demonstration and its example and how to avoid it.
a = u'éducba'
b = a.encode('utf8')
In the above program, we can see we are trying to print the Unicode characters by encoding first then we are trying to convert the encoded string into Unicode characters which mean decoding back to Unicode characters as given at the starting. In the above program when we run we get an error as UnicodeDecodeError. So to avoid this error we have to manually decode the Unicode character “b”.
So we can fix it by using below statement and we can see it in the above screenshot.
In this article, we conclude that in Python Unicode literals are other types of string for representing a different types of string. In this article, we saw different errors like UnicodeEncodeError and UnicodeDecodeError which are used for encoding and decoding of strings in the program along with examples. In this article, we also saw how to fix these errors manually by passing the string to the function.
This is a guide to Python Unicode Error. Here we discuss the introduction to Python Unicode Error and working of unicode error with examples respectively. You may also have a look at the following articles to learn more –