ietf-822
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Re: Content-language

1994-07-10 07:42:19
On Fri, 8 Jul 1994, Dave Crocker wrote:

Perhaps the answers are obvious to most folks.  I would then strongly
suggest that the spec contain at least the basic arguements.  But please
note that I've really asked TWO basic questions and I suggest the spec
answer both of them:  What is this for? and How is it to be used?

Two answers that spring to mind:

(a) Labelling body parts in a multipart/alternative with the language so
the software can choose an appropriate part based on the language(s) the
user is proficient in.  Not all that useful on most e-mail messages, but
may be useful in archival situations (e.g. the Web). 

Agreed. For information retrieval, content-language information is just
as useful as author names, title and other keywords.

(b) Helping to disambiguate unified character sets so the software can
choose a font which will render the unified characters best.

No. It's script language ("charset" of MIME) which provides the information
to re-distinguish the unification.

e.g. "this
CJK-unified message is intended for Japanese readers so use the Japanese
forms of the unified characters if you have multiple fonts available,
otherwise do the best you can with the fonts you have".

What can you do with a message with

        Content-Language: Japanese,Chinese,Korean

?

Please, no flames about whether unified character sets are good or bad or
whether the Content-Language tags are sufficient for all situations:

"charset" tag is sufficient for disunification as long as a message
contains a single script.

If a message contains multiple scripts, "Content-Language" tag can't
supply more information than "charset". That is, the Content-Language
tags are insufficient for all such situations.

I'm
just stating a possible usage if someone did choose to use such a
character set. 

Use different "charset" names for each script the "character set"
represents.

                                                        Masataka Ohta

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