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Fwd: Warning and I18N question (Adams #60).

From: Jim Gettys <jg@pa.dec.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Nov 1998 16:35:14 -0800
Message-Id: <9811170035.AA06573@pachyderm.pa.dec.com>
To: gadams@spyglass.com
Cc: http-wg@hplb.hpl.hp.com

I asked Jeff about this one.

As a result, I think we are best leaving things as they are, particularly
since it would be a new feature.
			- Jim

attached mail follows:


    Is it safe to update the reference in 14.46 to RFC 2231?
    
    > 
    > 60. Section 13.1.2, 7th para., has "a server might provide the same
    > warning with texts in both English and Basque". How would a UA
    > discrimitate among different warnings using different languages unless
    > the language were explicitly marked? Unfortunately, RFC2047 does not
    > address this issue. I'd suggest permitting the extensions specified by
    > RFC2231 (which updates RFC2047) to be used to provide explicit language
    > tagging of quoted strings.
    
I don't have any gripes about *allowing* the use of RFC2231.
I'm not sure I would require it, though, since I don't know
how widely implemented this is.  (Maybe Larry knows.)

However, my recollection of the history behind the Warning
internationalization discussion was that we assumed that either
the reader would understand the warning text or s/he wouldn't.
The expectation is that the warning-generator (probably a proxy)
would use the Accept-Language field in a request to guess at
the appropriate language for a Warning in the response.  If
the guess was hazy, it might give back several Warning texts,
e.g.

	Warning: 113 proxy.foo.com "Heuristic Expiration"
	Warning: 113 proxy.foo.com "Expiration Heuristique"
	Warning: 113 proxy.foo.com "Heuristischer Verfall"

(warning: translations courtesy of AltaVista) and the browser
might display this in a pop-up as

	Warning #113 from proxy.foo.com:

		Heuristic Expiration
		Expiration Heuristique
		Heuristischer Verfal

and let the user figure it out.  (Of course, to most users,
such a warning would be incomprehensible in any language.)

Adding RFC2231-style tagging would let the browser avoid
displaying Warnings not in the user's native language, I
suppose.  But I'm not sure that a proxy implementor should
count on this being available.

Also, it's a new "feature" that probably hasn't been tested
for our implementation report.

-Jeff
Received on Tuesday, 17 November 1998 00:35:27 EST

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