Re: "Difficult Characters" draft (in URLs)

Larry Masinter (masinter@parc.xerox.com)
Sun, 11 May 1997 11:54:20 PDT


Message-ID: <337615DC.7C2F@parc.xerox.com>
Date: Sun, 11 May 1997 11:54:20 PDT
From: Larry Masinter <masinter@parc.xerox.com>
To: "Martin J. Duerst" <mduerst@ifi.unizh.ch>
CC: "Alain LaBont/e'/" <alb@sct.gouv.qc.ca>, URI mailing list <uri@bunyip.com>
Subject: Re: "Difficult Characters" draft (in URLs)

Martin,

> "Keyboards exist" is not very helpful. If the market penetration of such
> keyboards is 10%, we better leave out UCAL; if it is 95%, we don't
> have to worry much.

It surprises me to see you fall into the same kind of position
that -- in the larger scale -- was the argument for keeping
URLs to "ASCII-only".

What is the scope of "the market"? If "the market" is "Alain",
then the market penetration is 100%. If "the market" is "all
keyboards on the planet" then, of course, the "market
penetration" of keyboards that can type anything other
than simple ASCII is still quite small.

We are really talking about "character entry method"
rather than "keyboard" since, as has been pointed out,
with the "right software" it's possible to enter almost
any kind of character from almost any kind of terminal;
and "market penetration" might want to be clarified
as to whether you're interested in the percentage of
"things that are being sold in the marketplace now"
or "existing, installed, usable", or at least some
forecast of the latter.