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Re: UUEncoding File Attachment

2010-01-28 16:47:14

Don't disagree with you Russ.

But I guess I still have a compassion for legacy operations and support. :) Over the holidays, as I normally do every year, I go over the source code to review with the ideas of "cleaning things up," maybe updating a piece of code or module with a new method that is used somewhere else perhaps, including deprecating/removing real old "things." Ironically, uuencoding was one of the items reviewed. But as it is almost always the case, sudden something reminds you that it is probably best to leave things alone. I really don't care to see reports from long time loyal customers who pays their monthly, quarterly or annual product maintenance and support fees, but hardly heard from in a long time say after an update, "Hey, what the hell happen here?" No, I rather not have that.



Hector Santos

Russ Allbery wrote:

Hector Santos <hsantos(_at_)santronics(_dot_)com> writes:
Russ Allbery wrote:

Huh.  I suppose I should thank someone that I've never had to deal with
commercial applications living that many decades in the past.

Well, IMO, things don't have to always change just for the sake of

Getting rid of uuencode for MIME is not change for the sake of change.
uuencode was a badly broken way of handling attachments in multiple ways.
I say this as someone who has written his own uuencode and uudecode
processors and used the protocol for various applications, mail and
non-mail, over the years.  I'd be happy to never see it again.

It's like many pre-MIME ways of doing things that MIME now has better ways
of doing, such as some of the Usenet article signature algorithms.  The
old ways mostly work until you look at them funny or hit some corner case,
and then they turn into a mess.  It's that lack of attention to detail and
edge cases that I mean when I say poor engineering.  Most of those systems
were designed in a much simpler time and were, at the time, following the
"simplest thing that could possibly work" approach.  MIME is a refactoring
to deal with all of the interoperability problems that came up in practice
after using them for many years.

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