Solving the UTF-8 problem; was Language Tag Modification 1694acad;

Doug Ewell dewell at
Wed Jul 4 08:01:53 CEST 2007

CE Whitehead <cewcathar at hotmail dot com> wrote:

> Many people in the 3rd world want to create web pages & not just do 
> casual browsing
> (my theory is everyone needs to create some too,
> to not just be a casual surfer, but to have the experience of creating 
> content;
> with sufficient experience creating content, you find out just how 
> easily content can be generated, which makes you a more savvy surfer);
> we do need to be international--
> But do go to utf-8!

Anyone who wants to create Web pages in a language other than English 
will need, at a bare minimum, access to a browser built in the last 8 
years that is capable of rendering Latin and Cyrillic text encoded in 
UTF-8.  (Note I did not say they will develop their Web pages in UTF-8.)

>> If you tell me what OS and browser you have at your disposal, I will 
>> tell you whether should be able to view 
>> correctly,
> If you can do the above, do the above for everyone out there

Who is "everyone"?  Not every Internet user needs or wants to view the 
Registry on his or her screen.  As Randy pointed out, most people will 
be users of "things built using information from the registry."

> At our site you should:
> (1) list browsers/OS's that can view utf-8
> (2) list Windows-95 compatible programs that provide the best-fit 
> displays of non-Latin-1 characters

Or, instead of all this, we could just provide unofficial copies of the 
Registry encoded in Latin-1, Shift-JIS, GB18030, hex NCRs, etc.

> Don't collapse the names distinguished by a single accent mark if it 
> really irks you,

It's flat wrong.

> but if you can get around being irked and find a way to transliterate 
> these . . .
> i.e., indicate somehow when there is an accented character (I guess e' 
> would not work for an e with an accent aigu--and what about accent 
> grave?--since ' is used for other characters; what about e* to 
> indicate e with some kind of accent??

We do not need yet another ad-hoc transcription system.  There are too 
many as it is.

>> Anywhere on earth?  This is your operational criterion, not mine.
> Why not??  I'm willing to help.

That isn't the point.  You need to consider who the *direct* users of 
the Registry are.  There are not 6.6 billion potential *direct* users of 
the Registry.

>> Quick question: How many people feel my efforts on RFC 4646 have been 
>> guided by what is easiest, rather than what is right?
> I'm sure you work pretty hard; I have great respect for anyone who 
> puts up with California freeway conditions everyday and does this too.
> But I am saying, let us do the little bit of work to provide some 
> transliterations.
> It's not because you do not work I am saying this.
> If you are overwhelmed then outsource.

That isn't the point at all.  I'm not saying, "I'm willing to take on 
this proposed work even though it's really hard and I'm overworked."

What I'm saying is, "I don't care how easy it is to do this proposed 
work; if it is the wrong thing to do then I don't want to do it."

Doug Ewell  *  Fullerton, California, USA  *  RFC 4645  *  UTN #14

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