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[DR 609] I18N experts' view

From: Hugo Haas <hugo@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 1 Dec 2000 17:28:27 -0500
To: xml-dist-app@w3.org
Cc: Martin Duerst <duerst@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20001201172827.F1834@tux.w3.org>
From the 2nd draft requirements document[1]:

          The XP specification should mandate the use of UTF-8 as its
          character set of choice.
          Discussion: There is a very good discussion currently on the WG
          private mailing list about this topic, when this discussion
          recedes we can formulate the requirement from the consensus.

I talked to Martin Dürst and Misha Wolf about this again. First, this DR
should talk about character encoding, not characted set.

Second, the answer to the question "can you encode any character you
want with UTF-8" is "almost". Misha mentionned some Egyptian hieroglyphs
not expressable in UTF-8.

Finally, they reiterated the comments made by Martin by email[2]. His
conclusion was:

On Wed, Nov 8, 2000, Martin J. Duerst wrote:
> So overall I suggest:
> - Don't fix on 'UTF-8 only' or 'more than UTF-8' now.
> - Make clear in the Req doc that that's something that will
>    have to be decided.
> - Get feedback and evaluate tradeoffs.

Basically, there a lot of reasons why we would want to restrict XP to
UTF-8, and a lot of other reasons why considering a larger set of
character encodings would be a good idea. However, they think that it is
premature to want to resolve this problem now. They suggested that we
get back to the I18N WG when we have more input.

I suggest that in order to ask for feedback we keep DR609 as a DR and
rephrase it as:

  The XP specification may or may not mandate the use of UTF-8 as its
  character encoding of choice.

  Discussion: The Working Group is aware of the complexity resulting in
  the use of a large set of character encodings but is unable at this
  point in time to make a decision on such a restriction.

That way, we are postponing the issue and inviting comments both from
the I18N WG and other people.

  1. http://www.w3.org/2000/xp/Group/xp-reqs-02
  2. http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Member/w3c-xml-protocol-wg/2000Nov/0226.html

Hugo Haas - W3C/MIT
mailto:hugo@w3.org - http://www.w3.org/People/Hugo/ - tel:+1-617-452-2092
Received on Friday, 1 December 2000 17:28:29 UTC

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