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re: Determination of Encoding

From: Michael Sperberg-McQueen <U35395@UICVM.UIC.EDU>
Date: Fri, 20 Jun 97 14:02:07 CDT
Message-Id: <199706201906.PAA03955@www10.w3.org>
To: W3C SGML Working Group <w3c-sgml-wg@w3.org>
On Thu, 19 Jun 1997 16:37:24 -0400 (EDT) Gavin Nicol said:
>>Consider a proxy server that performs code conversion without rewritting
>>the PI.  Consider a WWW browser or robot that does not understand XML.
>>Such browsers or robots certainly exist now and will not disappear in
>>the near future.  If they save a transfered XML document in a file,
>>the header information will disappear and the PI will remain incorrect.
>>Then, an XML parser is likely to fail.
>
>Precisely why I way that we must rely on HTTP header. I'm starting to
>think that Rick's proposal of requiring servers to remove the PI
>is a good idea.

How will relying on the external header fix matters?  The problem is
that it is always possible to get a transcoding server that doesn't
understand the format it's transcoding (one reason sending binary files
via Bitnet was always such an adventurous experience if one of the nodes
involved was an ASCII site).

The best that can be hoped for is to have some chance at noticing that
there is a discrepancy -- particularly important given the frequency
with which transcoders garble the data (at least ASCII/EBCDIC
transcoders do -- perhaps the transcoders for CJK character encodings
work flawlessly all the time).

To do that, you need to have the PI retained.

-CMSMcQ
Received on Friday, 20 June 1997 15:06:58 EDT

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