On Fri, 13 Jun 1997, Keith Moore wrote:
I don't think the UTF-8 requirement is reasonable.
It seems like this would impose a huge implementation burden for most UAs.
With this requirement in place, most people can't use it or benefit
from it. Without this requirement, many users could just add a header
field to outgoing mail specifying the languages and charsets that the
user can deal with, without needing UTF-8 support.
I disagree with this point. UTF-8 is not particularly hard to support --
it's certainly much easier to support than a large table of multiple
charsets for each language and all the cross-conversions (which often use
Unicode as an intermediate).
We need to start "hooking" UTF-8 to proposals like this so that we can
transition away from the current mess of character sets we have. In
addition, an "accept-language" header which requires UTF-8 is a far
simpler architecture than a combination of "accept-language" and
"accept-charset". Given the IAB charset workshop guidelines I think it
would be a mistake to let "accept-charset" leak out of HTTP.