From: erik(_at_)poel(_dot_)juice(_dot_)or(_dot_)jp (Erik M. van der Poel)
Subject: Re: MIME to Draft Standard
Date: Thu, 21 Jan 93 12:20:21 +0900
If we're going to add something like this, I would like to suggest
that we also somehow "add" a spec for compression (maybe in a separate
I received an audio/basic message once (got to hear Marshall's voice
for the first time! :-), but I was just disgusted about the size
required for the trivial amount of sound (short recording).
(Actually, since audio/basic uses u-law encoding, it is already somewhat
compressed...a 14-bit sample takes up only 8-bits, though with a loss in
Just to refresh our collective memory, there are several problems with
1. Patent issues make it difficult to find a compression algorithm
that is freely usable
2. The effectiveness of a given compression scheme is highly dependent
on what type of data is being compressed -- thus, compression wants
to be specific to content-type. (some types, e.g. image/gif,
image/jpeg, and audio/basic are already compressed.)
3. compression technology is still in rapid development--anything
that we adopt now may well be obsolete soon.
4. It doesn't fit well into the current MIME model.
However, the fact that programs like UNIX "compress" enjoy such widespread
use is a testament to the fact that a general compression scheme is in fact
useful...if we can solve problem #1, I think we can work around the other
Is any generalized compression method free from patent constraints? How
about V.42bis? How about what the GNU compression program uses?