Unicode characters '≥' and '≤' are getting replaced by '='

Hi everyone,

I am not sure if this is the best place for this, but I really hope someone can help me in the right direction to solve this. I have a problem with the display of unicode characters '≥' and '≤' in the output: R changes these characters to a '=' sign. I happens under windows but not under linux.

I came across this problem after reading an excel file with readxl::readr(), but the following minimal reproducible example gives the same error:

a <- data.frame(x= "≥",y="≤")
a

Output:
x y
= =

Expected output:
x y
≥ ≤

Session info:
R version 4.0.2 (2020-06-22) (EDIT: same happens after updating to R 4.0.3)
Platform: x86_64-w64-mingw32/x64 (64-bit)
Rstudio version 1.4.1087
LC_COLLATE=English_United Kingdom.1252

Same happens on a different computer with the same R version (4.0.2) but with a different locale:
LC_COLLATE=Dutch_Netherlands.1252

But it does not happen on a Linux server with an older R version:
R version 3.6.0 (2019-04-26)
Platform: x86_64-redhat-linux-gnu (64-bit)
Running under: Red Hat Cloud Infrastructure
LC_CTYPE=en_US.UTF-8

In the last Linux environment I get the expected result, but I also need it to work on my personal computer.
Is this because of the R version? Or because the locale is not set properly? Or it just does not work under windows? Any help is appreciated!

Some follow-up information: when using a tibble instead of a data frame, printing the tibble works as expected when I use the unicode name:

minimal.example.data <- tidyr::tribble(
  ~var1, ~var2,
  "\U2265", "\U2264"
)
minimal.example.data 

Correct output:
A tibble: 1 x 2

var1 var2

However, as soon as I convert this to a kable for more table displaying options, it converts the signs to an 'equal to' sign again:

knitr::kable(minimal.example.data)

output:

var1 var2
= =

Thanks for trying this out and replying. I am wondering if it is operating system dependent and only occurs in windows; I saw you are using macOS, with a different locale (en_US.UTF-8).

I do see this on Windows 10, R 4.0.2. US locale, by the way.

> minimal.example.data <- tidyr::tribble(
+   ~var1, ~var2,
+   "\U2265", "\U2264"
+ )
> View(minimal.example.data)
> knitr::kable(minimal.example.data)


|var1 |var2 |
|:----|:----|
|=    |=    |

Thanks for trying. So it might be a Windows problem. It also occurs in plane R (outside Rstudio). My Rstudio is standard set to UTF-8 (if it matters; I checked it).

I just came across another question with this similar problem, but no solution posted, from 2019:

My goal is to print this greater than or equal sign in a knitr::kable() table , using R/Rstudio my own windows computer; I need it to work with HTML and pdf output.

I hope someone can help with a solution!

For future reference: I started a topic on Stackoverflow, also showing some workarounds for specific cases that work for my data (although the workaround are a bit inconvenient).

I think that until UTF-8 in R under windows is fully supported (see here), there are no general solutions under windows. I'd be happy if someone proves me wrong on this though.

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I can't reproduce this.

library(tidyverse)

minimal.example.data <- tidyr::tribble(
  ~var1, ~var2,
  "\U2265", "\U2264"
)
minimal.example.data 
#> # A tibble: 1 x 2
#>   var1  var2 
#>   <chr> <chr>
#> 1 ≥     ≤

knitr::kable(minimal.example.data)
var1 var2

Created on 2021-01-18 by the reprex package (v0.3.0)

Session info
devtools::session_info()
#> ─ Session info ───────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────
#>  setting  value                       
#>  version  R version 4.0.3 (2020-10-10)
#>  os       macOS High Sierra 10.13.6   
#>  system   x86_64, darwin17.0          
#>  ui       X11                         
#>  language (EN)                        
#>  collate  en_US.UTF-8                 
#>  ctype    en_US.UTF-8                 
#>  tz       America/New_York            
#>  date     2021-01-18                  
#> 
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