Great! You know how to use text in your queries. However, what happens if you want to use non‐standard characters like
♍? These are called Unicode characters, and you can't use them like you did in the previous exercise. Look at the code below:
WHERE Zodiac = N'♍';
N before the string indicates that the string is in Unicode fomat. The Unicode standard provides lots of symbols that aren't available in regular text in T-SQL, such as the ∫ (integral), ♈ (the Aries zodiac sign), ☿ (the astrological sign for Mercury), and many others.
It's a good idea to use Unicode if you work with international data. That way, the strings you type will support characters from different alphabets. When using Unicode, it is common practice to place the
N before all string literals. We're going to follow that practice throughout this course.