UTF-8 & Unicode

Discussion in 'XML' started by EU citizen, Jan 28, 2005.

  1. EU citizen

    EU citizen Guest

    Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8 encoding?
    If so, can anyone name a free application which I can use under Windows 98
    to create web pages?
     
    EU citizen, Jan 28, 2005
    #1
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  2. EU citizen wrote:
    > Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8 encoding?


    Yes, but that doesn't mean you need a special text editor: any plain
    US-ASCII (but not ISO 8859-1) file is automatically correct in UTF-8.
     
    Leif K-Brooks, Jan 28, 2005
    #2
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  3. Pierre Goiffon, Jan 31, 2005
    #3
  4. EU citizen

    Lachlan Hunt Guest

    EU citizen wrote:
    > Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8 encoding?


    That's kind of a silly question because UTF-8 is a unicode encoding.
    See my 3 part guide to unicode for an in-depth tutorial on creating
    unicode files.

    http://lachy.id.au/blogs/log/2004/12/guide-to-unicode-part-1
    http://lachy.id.au/blogs/log/2004/12/guide-to-unicode-part-2
    http://lachy.id.au/blogs/log/2005/01/guide-to-unicode-part-3

    --
    Lachlan Hunt
    http://lachy.id.au/
    http://GetFirefox.com/ Rediscover the Web
    http://SpreadFirefox.com/ Igniting the Web
     
    Lachlan Hunt, Feb 2, 2005
    #4
  5. EU citizen

    EU citizen Guest

    "Lachlan Hunt" <> wrote in message
    news:42006275$0$6415$...
    > EU citizen wrote:
    > > Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8

    encoding?
    >
    > That's kind of a silly question because UTF-8 is a unicode encoding.
    > See my 3 part guide to unicode for an in-depth tutorial on creating
    > unicode files.
    >
    > http://lachy.id.au/blogs/log/2004/12/guide-to-unicode-part-1
    > http://lachy.id.au/blogs/log/2004/12/guide-to-unicode-part-2
    > http://lachy.id.au/blogs/log/2005/01/guide-to-unicode-part-3
    >


    I wish people would give simple answers to simple questions.
    This is not a silly question; See
    http://www.w3schools.com/xml/xml_encoding.asp on XML Encoding. Slightly
    edited, this says:

    XML documents can contain foreign characters like Norwegian æøå, or French
    êèé.
    To let your XML parser understand these characters, you should save your XML
    documents as Unicode.
    Windows 95/98 Notepad cannot save files in Unicode format.
    You can use Notepad to edit and save XML documents that contain foreign
    characters (like Norwegian or French æøå and êèé),
    But if you save the file and open it with IE 5.0, you will get an ERROR
    MESSAGE.

    Windows 95/98 Notepad files must be saved with an encoding attribute.
    To avoid this error you can add an encoding attribute to your XML
    declaration, but you cannot use Unicode.
    The encoding below (open it with IE 5.0), will NOT give an error message:
    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
     
    EU citizen, Feb 2, 2005
    #5
  6. In article <4Z0Md.51$>,
    EU citizen <> wrote:

    >> > Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8

    >encoding?


    >> That's kind of a silly question because UTF-8 is a unicode encoding.


    >I wish people would give simple answers to simple questions.


    It may be a simple question for you, because you know what you mean,
    but for the rest of us it's a hard-to-understand question, because
    if you use UTF-8, you are inevitably using Unicode, since it's a
    way of writing Unicode.

    But from what you say now, it looks as if your question is really
    about some Windows software.

    >To let your XML parser understand these characters, you should save your XML
    >documents as Unicode.
    >Windows 95/98 Notepad cannot save files in Unicode format.
    >You can use Notepad to edit and save XML documents that contain foreign
    >characters (like Norwegian or French æøå and êèé),
    >But if you save the file and open it with IE 5.0, you will get an ERROR
    >MESSAGE.


    Presumably this means that Notepad saves documents containing those
    characters in some non-Unicode encoding, in which case you must put
    an appropriate encoding declaration at the top of the document. But
    you will need to know the name of the encoding that Notepad uses.

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="whatever-the-notepad-encoding-is"?>

    >Windows 95/98 Notepad files must be saved with an encoding attribute.


    This is mysterious. What does it mean? That Notepad won't save
    them without one? Or that you have to add one to make it work
    in the web browser?

    >To avoid this error you can add an encoding attribute to your XML
    >declaration, but you cannot use Unicode.
    >The encoding below (open it with IE 5.0), will NOT give an error message:
    ><?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>


    It only makes sense to say that you're using UTF-8 if you are. If Notepad
    really doesn't know about Unicode, this will only be true if you
    restrict yourself to ASCII characters, because they're the same
    in UTF-8 as they are in ASCII and most other common encodings.

    -- Richard
     
    Richard Tobin, Feb 2, 2005
    #6
  7. On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, EU citizen wrote:

    > > > Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8

    > encoding?


    [...]

    > I wish people would give simple answers to simple questions.


    I don't think you've understood the problem. If the questioner was in
    a position to understand the "simple answer" which you say you want, I
    can't imagine how they would have asked the question in that form in
    the first place.

    > This is not a silly question;


    The original questioner should not feel offended or dispirited by what
    I'm going to say: but, in the form in which is was asked, the question
    is incoherent.

    This is not unusual: many people are confused both by the theory and
    by the terminology of character representation, especially if they
    gained an initial understanding in a simpler situation (typically,
    character repertoires of 256 characters or less, represented by an
    8-bit character encoding such as iso-8859-anything; and fonts that
    were laid out accordingly).

    > See
    > http://www.w3schools.com/xml/xml_encoding.asp on XML Encoding.


    How very strange. This claims to be XHTML, but, as far as I can see,
    it has no character encoding specified on its HTTP Content-type header
    *nor* on its <?xml...> thingy (indeed it doesn't have a <?xml...>
    thingy).

    In the absence of a BOM, XML is entitled to deduce that it's utf-8:
    but since it's invalid utf-8, it *ought* to refuse to process it.
    Unless someone can show me what I'm missing.

    By looking at it, it is evidently encoded in iso-8859-1.
    It purports to declare that via a "meta http-equiv", but for XML this
    is meaningless - and anyway comes far too late.

    I don't know why the W3C validator doesn't reject it out of hand?

    (Of course the popular browsers will be slurping it as slightly
    xhtml-flavoured tag soup, so we can't expect to deduce very much from
    the fact that they calmly display what the author intended.)

    > Slightly
    > edited, this says:
    >
    > XML documents can contain foreign characters like Norwegian æøå, or French
    > êèé.


    And those characters are presented encoded in iso-8859-1 ...

    > To let your XML parser understand these characters, you should save
    > your XML documents as Unicode.


    Two things wrong here. What do they suppose they mean by "save ... as
    Unicode"? The XML Document Character Set is *by definition* Unicode,
    there's nothing that an author can do to change that (unlike SGML).

    Characters can be represented in at least two different ways in XML:
    by /numerical character references/ (), or as /encoded
    characters/ using some /character encoding scheme/. (In some contexts
    there may also be named character entities, but they introduce no new
    principles for the present purpose so we won't need to discuss them
    here).

    The only coherent interpretation I can put on their "should save as
    Unicode" statement is "should save in one of the character encoding
    schemes of Unicode". But /should/ we? Do they? No, they don't: they
    are using iso-8859-1 (they *could* even do it correctly); and they
    also discuss the use of windows-1252, although without giving much
    detail about the implications of deploying a proprietary character
    encoding on the WWW.

    The /conclusions/ are fine, in their way:

    * Use an editor that supports encoding.
    * Make sure you know what encoding it uses.
    * Use the same encoding attribute in your XML documents.

    But the reader still hasn't really learned anything about the
    underlying principles yet. And the page hasn't told them anything
    useful about *which* encoding to choose for deploying their documents
    on the WWW.

    > Windows 95/98 Notepad cannot save files in Unicode format.


    Then it's unfit for composing the kind of document that we are
    discussing here. No matter - there are plenty of competent editors
    which can work on that platform.

    My own tutorial pages weren't really aimed at XML, so I won't suggest
    them as an appropriate answer here. Actually, the relevant chapter of
    the Unicode specification is not unreasonable as an introduction to
    the principles of character representation and encoding, even if they
    might be a bit indigestible at a first reading.
     
    Alan J. Flavell, Feb 2, 2005
    #7
  8. /EU citizen/:

    > XML documents can contain foreign characters like Norwegian æøå, or French
    > êèé.

    [...]
    > You can use Notepad to edit and save XML documents that contain foreign
    > characters (like Norwegian or French æøå and êèé),


    Hm, I don't see any Norwegian or French characters but some Cyrillic
    instead... could it be you forgot to label the encoding of your
    message? ;-)

    --
    Stanimir
     
    Stanimir Stamenkov, Feb 2, 2005
    #8
  9. EU citizen

    EU citizen Guest

    "Richard Tobin" <> wrote in message
    news:ctq7fk$51s$...
    > In article <4Z0Md.51$>,
    > EU citizen <> wrote:
    >
    > >> > Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8

    > >encoding?

    >
    > >> That's kind of a silly question because UTF-8 is a unicode encoding.

    >
    > >I wish people would give simple answers to simple questions.

    >
    > It may be a simple question for you, because you know what you mean,
    > but for the rest of us it's a hard-to-understand question, because
    > if you use UTF-8, you are inevitably using Unicode, since it's a
    > way of writing Unicode.
    >
    > But from what you say now, it looks as if your question is really
    > about some Windows software.


    No. I am using a version of Windows (like most computer users on this
    planet). However, my question isn't specific to Windows. For all I knew,
    declaring uft-8 encoding might've caused the file to be transformed into
    utf-8 regardless of the original file format.


    >
    > >To let your XML parser understand these characters, you should save your

    XML
    > >documents as Unicode.
    > >Windows 95/98 Notepad cannot save files in Unicode format.
    > >You can use Notepad to edit and save XML documents that contain foreign
    > >characters (like Norwegian or French æøå and êèé),
    > >But if you save the file and open it with IE 5.0, you will get an ERROR
    > >MESSAGE.

    >
    > Presumably this means that Notepad saves documents containing those
    > characters in some non-Unicode encoding, in which case you must put
    > an appropriate encoding declaration at the top of the document. But
    > you will need to know the name of the encoding that Notepad uses.
    >
    > <?xml version="1.0" encoding="whatever-the-notepad-encoding-is"?>


    Based on what I know now, I agree. I always assumed that Notepad, being a
    simple text editor, saved files in Ascii format. Nothing in Notepad's Help,
    Windows' Help or Microsoft's website says anything about the formt used by
    Notepad. Through experimentation with the W3C HTML vakidator, I've worked
    out that iso-8859-1will work for Notepad files with standard english text
    plus acute accented vowels.

    >
    > >Windows 95/98 Notepad files must be saved with an encoding attribute.

    >
    > This is mysterious. What does it mean? That Notepad won't save
    > them without one? Or that you have to add one to make it work
    > in the web browser?


    I can't make head or tail of it.

    >
    > >To avoid this error you can add an encoding attribute to your XML
    > >declaration, but you cannot use Unicode.
    > >The encoding below (open it with IE 5.0), will NOT give an error message:
    > ><?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>

    >
    > It only makes sense to say that you're using UTF-8 if you are. If Notepad
    > really doesn't know about Unicode, this will only be true if you
    > restrict yourself to ASCII characters, because they're the same
    > in UTF-8 as they are in ASCII and most other common encodings.
    >


    The need for the XML encoding statement to match the original file format
    was not mentioned in any of the (many) articles I've read on XM:/XHTML over
    the last *four* years.
     
    EU citizen, Feb 2, 2005
    #9
  10. EU citizen

    EU citizen Guest

    "Alan J. Flavell" <> wrote in message
    news:p...
    > On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, EU citizen wrote:
    >
    > > > > Do web pages have to be created in unicode in order to use UTF-8

    > > encoding?

    >
    > [...]
    >
    > > I wish people would give simple answers to simple questions.

    >
    > I don't think you've understood the problem. If the questioner was in
    > a position to understand the "simple answer" which you say you want, I
    > can't imagine how they would have asked the question in that form in
    > the first place.
    >
    > > This is not a silly question;

    >
    > The original questioner should not feel offended or dispirited by what
    > I'm going to say: but, in the form in which is was asked, the question
    > is incoherent.


    I think there's a lot of miscommunication going on, I don't entirely
    understand what your posting.

    > > See
    > > http://www.w3schools.com/xml/xml_encoding.asp on XML Encoding.

    >
    > How very strange. This claims to be XHTML, but, as far as I can see,
    > it has no character encoding specified on its HTTP Content-type header
    > *nor* on its <?xml...> thingy (indeed it doesn't have a <?xml...>
    > thingy).
    >


    <snip>

    You makee a number of valid criticisms about the w3schools article, but they
    turned up near the top of my Google search for information on this subject.
    It just shows how difficult it is to get reliable information.

    > > Windows 95/98 Notepad cannot save files in Unicode format.

    >
    > Then it's unfit for composing the kind of document that we are
    > discussing here. No matter - there are plenty of competent editors
    > which can work on that platform.


    My original question asked for suggestions about suitable applications, and
    yet no one has named one.
     
    EU citizen, Feb 2, 2005
    #10
  11. In article <Pt7Md.456$>,
    EU citizen <> wrote:
    >Through experimentation with the W3C HTML vakidator, I've worked
    >out that iso-8859-1will work for Notepad files with standard english text
    >plus acute accented vowels.


    Beware that Microsoft uses some proprietary encodings that are ISO-8859-1
    for characters A0-FF, but use the C1 controls (81-9F) for other purposes.
    If you don't use any of those (and the Euro symbol is quite likely one
    of them) you should be OK.

    >The need for the XML encoding statement to match the original file format
    >was not mentioned in any of the (many) articles I've read on XM:/XHTML over
    >the last *four* years.


    In most circumstances UTF-8 is the default encoding for XML if there
    is no encoding declaration. In theory for text/* served by HTTP,
    8859-1 is (or was - they may have changed it) the default. But if you
    stick to ascii, it won't matter. And remember that you *can* stick to
    ASCII and use character references (such as £) or entity
    references (if you declare them in your DTD) for all non-ascii
    characters.

    -- Richard
     
    Richard Tobin, Feb 2, 2005
    #11
  12. On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, EU citizen wrote:

    > X-Newsreader: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2800.1437
    >
    > XML documents can contain foreign characters like Norwegian ???, or French
    > ???.


    You need to set up your newsreader^W Outlook Express correctly
    in order to transmit special, non-ASCII characters:

    Tools > Options > Send
    Mail Sending Format > Plain Text Settings > Message format MIME
    News Sending Format > Plain Text Settings > Message format MIME
    Encode text using: None

    --
    Top-posting.
    What's the most irritating thing on Usenet?
     
    Andreas Prilop, Feb 2, 2005
    #12
  13. On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Richard Tobin wrote:

    > In most circumstances UTF-8 is the default encoding for XML if there
    > is no encoding declaration.


    It's a bit more complicated than that.

    http://www.w3.org/TR/2000/REC-xml-20001006#charencoding

    The /default/ is to look for a BOM - failing which, utf-8 is assumed.

    On the other hand, it seems you've caught me out with the next bit:

    > In theory for text/* served by HTTP,
    > 8859-1 is (or was - they may have changed it) the default.


    HTTP hasn't changed. RFC2616 section 3.7.1, last paragraph. Thanks!

    So I suppose /that/ was the explanation for the W3C validator not
    failing the cited page from w3schools. Thanks.

    > But if you stick to ascii, it won't matter.


    True - although that's hardly a very efficient way to write, say,
    Cyrillic, or Arabic, or Japanese.
     
    Alan J. Flavell, Feb 2, 2005
    #13
  14. EU citizen

    Lachlan Hunt Guest

    EU citizen wrote:
    > My original question asked for suggestions about suitable applications, and
    > yet no one has named one.


    If you cared to take the time to read the guide to unicode I linked to
    earlier, you would have found editors mentioned in part 2. Within it, I
    mentioned two windows editors that support Unicode: SuperEdi [1] and
    Macromedia Dreamweaver. A simple search for "Unicode Editor" also
    reveals many other editors that may be capable of doing the job.

    [1] http://www.wolosoft.com/en/superedi/

    --
    Lachlan Hunt
    http://lachy.id.au/
    http://GetFirefox.com/ Rediscover the Web
    http://SpreadFirefox.com/ Igniting the Web
     
    Lachlan Hunt, Feb 3, 2005
    #14
  15. EU citizen

    Lachlan Hunt Guest

    EU citizen wrote:
    > "Richard Tobin" <> wrote in message
    > news:ctq7fk$51s$...
    >> <?xml version="1.0" encoding="whatever-the-notepad-encoding-is"?>

    >
    > Based on what I know now, I agree. I always assumed that Notepad, being a
    > simple text editor, saved files in Ascii format.


    By default, Notepad saves files as Windows-1252. The characters from 0
    to 127 (0x7F) are identical to US-ASCII, ISO-8859-1, UTF-8 and many
    other character sets that make use of the same subset. Thus, any file
    saved using Windows-1252 that only makes use of those characters is
    compatible with all those other encodings.

    The characters from 160 (0xA0) to 255 (0xFF) match those contained in
    ISO-8859-1. Thus, any file saved using Windows-1252 that only makes use
    of the aforementioned US-ASCII subset and that range of characters is
    compatible with ISO-8859-1.

    The characters from 128 (0x80) to 159 (0x9F), however, do not match
    those in any other encoding, making any Windows-1252 file using these
    characters incompatible with any other encoding. For XML, this must be
    declared appropriately in the XML declaration. The characters in this
    range contain the infamous "smart quotes" (Left and Right, single and
    double quotation marks: ‘ ’ “ â€) that cause so many problems for the
    uneducated. Use of this range while declaring ISO-8859-1, UTF-8 or any
    other encoding, will cause errors because they are control characters in
    the character repertoires used by those encodings.

    > Nothing in Notepad's Help, Windows' Help or Microsoft's website says anything
    > about the formt used by Notepad.


    It is actually mentioned in a few places on the web, though it's not
    easy to find. Microsoft tend to incorrectly refer to it as ANSI, even
    though it is not.


    > Through experimentation with the W3C HTML vakidator, I've worked out that
    > iso-8859-1will work for Notepad files with standard english text plus acute
    > accented vowels.


    That's because Windows-1252 is compatible with ISO-8859-1 when that
    subset is used.

    >>>Windows 95/98 Notepad files must be saved with an encoding attribute.

    >>
    >>This is mysterious. What does it mean? That Notepad won't save
    >>them without one? Or that you have to add one to make it work
    >>in the web browser?

    >
    > I can't make head or tail of it.


    It actually means that version of Notepad will only save as
    Windows-1252, so it needs to be declared in the XML declaration. That
    is because an XML parser will assume UTF-8 without it and that
    assumption is acceptable only when the US-ASCII subset is used.

    --
    Lachlan Hunt
    http://lachy.id.au/
    http://GetFirefox.com/ Rediscover the Web
    http://SpreadFirefox.com/ Igniting the Web
     
    Lachlan Hunt, Feb 3, 2005
    #15
  16. On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, EU citizen wrote:

    > The need for the XML encoding statement to match the original file
    > format was not mentioned in any of the (many) articles I've read on
    > XM:/XHTML over the last *four* years.


    The XML coding has to comply with the relevant bit of the XML
    specification. Whether you read it "over the last four years" or not.
    http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-xml/#charencoding

    Talking about the "original file format" could be misleading, bearing
    in mind that some HTTP servers are set up to transcode the
    internally-stored file format into one that's more appropriate for use
    on the web. For XML-based markups, that may call for appropriate
    rewriting of the document's XML encoding specification. And if you're
    using XHTML/1.0 Appendix C then the transcoded document would need to
    confirm to its constraints too.
     
    Alan J. Flavell, Feb 3, 2005
    #16
  17. Alan J. Flavell wrote:
    > On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, EU citizen wrote:
    >
    >
    >>The need for the XML encoding statement to match the original file
    >>format was not mentioned in any of the (many) articles I've read on
    >>XM:/XHTML over the last *four* years.

    >
    >
    > The XML coding has to comply with the relevant bit of the XML
    > specification. Whether you read it "over the last four years" or not.
    > http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-xml/#charencoding
    >
    > Talking about the "original file format" could be misleading, bearing
    > in mind that some HTTP servers are set up to transcode the
    > internally-stored file format into one that's more appropriate for use
    > on the web. For XML-based markups, that may call for appropriate
    > rewriting of the document's XML encoding specification. And if you're
    > using XHTML/1.0 Appendix C then the transcoded document would need to
    > confirm to its constraints too.
    >


    RFC3023 talk about XML media types

    i retain that text/xml (and text/and-others-related-to-xml) should be
    avoid on behalf of application/xml (and
    application/and-others-related-to-xml)

    Here we get utf-8:
    Content-type: text/xml; charset="utf-8"
    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

    !?!?! Here we get US-ACII, despite the encoding specified:
    Content-type: text/xml
    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>

    Here we get utf-16:
    Content-type: application/xml; charset="utf-16"
    {BOM}<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-16"?>

    Here we get the right encoding-known-by-your-parser:
    Content-type: application/xml
    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="encoding-known-by-your-parser"?>

    --
    Cordialement,

    ///
    (. .)
    -----ooO--(_)--Ooo-----
    | Philippe Poulard |
    -----------------------
     
    Philippe Poulard, Feb 3, 2005
    #17
  18. In article <>,
    "Alan J. Flavell" <> wrote:

    > The /conclusions/ are fine, in their way:
    >
    > * Use an editor that supports encoding.
    > * Make sure you know what encoding it uses.
    > * Use the same encoding attribute in your XML documents.


    That is not a safe conclusion. XML processors are only required to
    support UTF-8 and UTF-16. Support for any other encoding is an XML
    processor-specific extra feature. It follows that using any encoding
    other than UTF-8 or UTF-16 is unsafe. If communication fails, because
    someone sent an XML document in an encoding other than UTF-8 or UTF-16,
    the sender is to blame.

    This simplifies to a rule of thumb:
    When producing XML, always use UTF-8 (and Unicode Normalization Form C).
    Those who absolutely insist on using UTF-16 can use UTF-16 instead of
    UTF-8.

    --
    Henri Sivonen

    http://iki.fi/hsivonen/
    Mozilla Web Author FAQ: http://mozilla.org/docs/web-developer/faq.html
     
    Henri Sivonen, Feb 4, 2005
    #18
  19. Henri Sivonen wrote:
    > In article <>,
    > "Alan J. Flavell" <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>The /conclusions/ are fine, in their way:
    >>
    >> * Use an editor that supports encoding.
    >> * Make sure you know what encoding it uses.
    >> * Use the same encoding attribute in your XML documents.

    >
    >
    > That is not a safe conclusion. XML processors are only required to
    > support UTF-8 and UTF-16. Support for any other encoding is an XML
    > processor-specific extra feature. It follows that using any encoding
    > other than UTF-8 or UTF-16 is unsafe. If communication fails, because
    > someone sent an XML document in an encoding other than UTF-8 or UTF-16,
    > the sender is to blame.
    >
    > This simplifies to a rule of thumb:
    > When producing XML, always use UTF-8 (and Unicode Normalization Form C).
    > Those who absolutely insist on using UTF-16 can use UTF-16 instead of
    > UTF-8.
    >


    this is theory

    is there anybody who knows a parser that doesn't handle iso-8859-1
    corresctly ? i don't think so; otherwise, you should change, and
    communication became safe :)

    --
    Cordialement,

    ///
    (. .)
    -----ooO--(_)--Ooo-----
    | Philippe Poulard |
    -----------------------
     
    Philippe Poulard, Feb 4, 2005
    #19
  20. On Fri, 4 Feb 2005, Henri Sivonen wrote:

    > "Alan J. Flavell" <> wrote:
    >
    > > The /conclusions/ are fine, in their way:
    > >
    > > * Use an editor that supports encoding.
    > > * Make sure you know what encoding it uses.
    > > * Use the same encoding attribute in your XML documents.

    >
    > That is not a safe conclusion.


    I guess that was one of the penalties of responding to a cross-posted
    article.

    > XML processors are only required to
    > support UTF-8 and UTF-16. Support for any other encoding is an XML
    > processor-specific extra feature.


    But that's OK, since any plausible encoding produced by the editor can
    be transformed by rote into utf-8 prior to subsequent XML processing
    (that's the XML relevance). And pretty much any plausible encoding
    produced by an editor that's meant for WWW use, is going to be
    supported by the available web browsers (that's the c.i.w.a.h
    relevance).

    > It follows that using any encoding other than UTF-8 or UTF-16 is
    > unsafe.


    I take your point, but again: as long as the document is correctly
    labelled, it can be transformed by rote into utf-8, it needs no
    special heuristics, nor does it run risks of being damaged in the
    process.

    all the best
     
    Alan J. Flavell, Feb 4, 2005
    #20
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