I'm kind of stunned I never noticed this before, but my keyboard and the ascii table does not contain a real apostraphe!
The apostrophe is not supposed to be a vertical ' , what we would call the single quote. That is actually a different kind of diacritical mark. In fact, the single quote is not a real character either, single quotes should face in one of two directions, just like double quotes. Of course, I don't really care that much, so I guess it is okay.
I noticed because I decided to substitute ' for ` in some user input to prevent SQL injection. I know there are more normative ways, since you can put a ' in an SQL db, but even after escaping it for the SQL itself, bringing it back out then creates too much hassle with JS/Ajax calls and embedded (perl) variables, which JS uses a lot of '. I imagine there the same issue exists with PHP etc, and there are some long winded ways of dealing with it.
So I thought, hey, at least in English, all of those ' should really be `. Except that is backward:
The apostrophe is supposed to angle back to indicate the substituted character, "i", not forward as the "backtick" (misnomer? it's a forward tick! No it's oblique ) does.
I'm actually positive that typewriters had all four quotes, open and close single and double, AND the diacritical ' which is used in some languages but not English. Of course, I'm not sure where to look for a typewriter suddenly...but if you go a look at an old paperback, they use all forward and backward angled quotes.
Kind of an anal issue I guess. Hopefully no one will be able to accuse me of being "wrong" by substituting ` since ' was "wrong" to start with...
I find this a little 'trippy' for some reason.