take ASCII. there are a couple of characters you don't often use like ~, OK you are in Germany, call it an Umlaut (or something similar).
Simple version of an ISO standard called Latin-1 that had most of the european characters in an 8-bit byte. But minor variants on DEC, HP and NCR versions.
EBCDIC, but there was a Latin-1 EBCDIC too. Standards actually had all the same characters.
Microsoft's character set didn't map either.
Consider effort we put in for the first 2 pages of the ISO standard and it went for hundreds of pages