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Re: Bug#208011: [PROPOSAL] UTF-8 encoding for debian/control

On Tue, 2 Sep 2003 23:25:57 +0200, Denis Barbier <barbier@linuxfr.org> said: 

> On Tue, Sep 02, 2003 at 06:18:39PM +0200, Josip Rodin wrote:
>> On Tue, Sep 02, 2003 at 05:48:27AM +0200, Martin Godisch wrote:
>> > > > Anyway I fail to see which problems arise with this proposal,
>> > > > could someone enlighten me?
>> > >
>> > > It's too broad. Has anyone tested if the packaging system
>> > > correctly processes double-byte information everywhere?
>> >
>> > I had no problems reading mbc descriptions with dpkg and apt so
>> > far. Is there some special test I should do?
>> Your proposal says "the control fields". Description is just one,
>> what about all the others? (If it was your intent to only do this
>> for descriptions, why doesn't the proposal say so?)

> My understanding of the proposal is that if a field use non-ASCII
> characters, encoding should be UTF-8.  It does not say that all
> fields can contain non-ASCII characters, which is why current
> packaging tools does not need to be patched.

	This is a copout.  If the field is not supposed to have non
 ascii characters (since the tool chain can not yet handle them), then
 policy should not be specifying the encoding of these illegal

> Currently 165 binary packages contain non-ASCII characters in
> Maintainer or Description fields; there are 56 binary packages with
> non-ASCII characters in their description (which means that you are
> responsible of 9% of this garbage ;)), and 26 maintainer names with
> such letters (but only 21 unique maintainers).  This is an upper
> limit, maybe some of these strings are already UTF-8 encoded.

	No. If policy blesses non ascii charactrers, then there are
 going to be a lot more packages that shall have UTF-8 characters in
 them, and the tool chain would still not be ready to deal with them.


...Compare this with the unit of facial beauty, the Helen, first
defined by C. Marlowe.  A milliHelen, of course, will launch just one
ship. Stan Kelly-Bootle, "Devil's Advocate", _UNIX Review_, May 1991
Manoj Srivastava   <srivasta@debian.org>  <http://www.debian.org/%7Esrivasta/>
1024R/C7261095 print CB D9 F4 12 68 07 E4 05  CC 2D 27 12 1D F5 E8 6E
1024D/BF24424C print 4966 F272 D093 B493 410B  924B 21BA DABB BF24 424C

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