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Re: [gnu.org #1363250] ASCII maintain.txt is no longer ASCII

From: John Darrington
Subject: Re: [gnu.org #1363250] ASCII maintain.txt is no longer ASCII
Date: Sat, 2 Mar 2019 09:01:12 +0100
User-agent: NeoMutt/20170113 (1.7.2)

On Fri, Mar 01, 2019 at 05:07:02PM -0500, Alfred M. Szmidt wrote:
        Just before we go off at too many tangents, a bit of background info for
        this discussion.
        * ASCII is a well defined standard, and all ASCII is UTF-8 (but the
          converse is not true).
        *  The command iconv -f UTF-8 -t ASCII file will fail unless all the
           characters in file are already ASCII.  Hence it isn't a very useful
        * The coding standards say that we should prefer ASCII wherever
          possible.  If it is not possible, then we should use UTF-8.
     There is no mention of prefering UTF-8.

It says: "If you need to use non-ASCII characters, you should normally
stick with one encoding, certainly within a single file. UTF-8 is
likely to be the best choice."
     I would also argue that it does not say to prefer ASCII "wherever
     possible" -- rather the opposite, that _if_ we have words that use
     accented characters we can write them (even preferably) using some
     other encoding.  But I guess that is a bit of a "we read it
     differently topic", and the GCS not being the law. :-)

To me it's quite clear: "Sticking to the ASCII character set (plain
text, 7-bit characters) is preferred." which leaves very little room
for interpretation.

But you are right.  GCS are not hard and fast rules.  So this means if
there is a good reason to depart from the standards, then do so, but
the onus is on you to justify your decision to do so.


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