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

From: Alfred M. Szmidt
Subject: Re: [gnu.org #1363250] ASCII maintain.txt is no longer ASCII
Date: Mon, 04 Mar 2019 12:48:31 -0500

   It seems you have a powerful machine with a modern distro that allows 
   you "adjust its locale" (to UTF-8, I guess). On many machines out there, 
   that is not possible (or desirable).

My machine is over 10 years old.  I can't even remeber when you
_couldn't_ modify the locale on a GNU system.  If your system is that
old then you have more problems than viewing a text file! :-)

It sounds more and more like your situation is not the norm, but
rather a very special case.  Why can you not simply convert (or
regenerate) the relevant files?  

Today, and for the last 10 years, UTF-8 has been the default and I
cannot think of any kind of terminal in the last 30 years that is
unable to display UTF-8 properly.

   >     So, please, could maintain.txt and maintain.info be coded again in 
   >     (as advertised) for maximum compatibility with UTF-8 and 8-bit
   >     terminals? Thanks.
   > Lets not make hasty random changes, specially when this one was very
   > explicit.  Lets take the time to understand the problem first, and
   > then find a solution.

   IMHO, the problem is clear. Using multibyte UTF-8 characters where ASCII 
   suffices, inconveniences all users lacking an UTF-8 capable machine or 

Maybe we should have a poll, on how many 7-bit ASCII users there are
versus UTF-8?  I don't see that the problem is clear at all.  And I am
guessing that 7-bit terminals is not the norm at all.

   Moreover, what is the advantage of multibyte UTF-8 quotes for users with 
   UTF-8 capable screens? They make the text easier to understand or something?

If we are talking about Info, then using UTF-8 produces a much nicer
output in X11 -- which is what the majority of users would be using

Maybe for the text file, using 7-bit ASCII would be fine, but I
personally would not prefer to see that the Info files are munged for
the sake of obsolete terminals that are no longer produced.

GNU always prided it self in moving forward, not backward.  But as
alwasy .. it is up to RMS.

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