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Re: [ietf-smtp] [pkix] another attempt to canonicalize local parts

2016-03-11 15:37:40
I agree in general, but there's one point...

John C Klensin writes:
(1) Is it reasonable to try to "canonicalize" email addresses to
make them more usable for purposes other than routing and
delivering email?  RFC 5321 and associated and predecessor
documents are fairly clear on the answer to that question: that
answer is "don't even consider it".

I've done that and I'll do it again, and I believe that it is safe and even desirable on one condition: That mistakes are harmless and cheap. For instance, if I want to send mail on my phone and start typing a name, the phone will show 3-4 suggestions. If its canonicalisation didn't do the right thing, some of those suggestions will be poor. *Yawn*

I believe that if one wants to canonicalise email addresses usefully, then it is necessary to design the surrounding system such that mistakes are harmless. That's not too difficult for address book software, but doing it for for anything PKIX-like sounds daunting. Impossible? Perhaps, perhaps not.


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