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Re: char16 datatype

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Chip Salzenberg
November 14, 2008 00:55
Re: char16 datatype
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On Fri, Nov 14, 2008 at 09:27:24AM +0100, demerphq wrote:
> Ultimately UTF-8 was a kludge, developed practically overnight to ensure
> that there would be a unicode representation that was unix legacy
> compatible, with the long term intention of replacing it with something
> better. Win32 switched to UCS-2 and then to UTF-16, and it wouldnt
> surprise me if in some future iteration they switch to UTF-32. The
> question is how long do the *nixes stick with the kludge?

I don't really have a horse in this race, but I'll venture an answer:


A kludge, according to the ancient issue of Datamation which provided the
best definition I've ever read, is: "An ill-assorted collection of poorly
matching parts, forming a distressing whole."

UTF-8 is not a kludge.  It's a brilliant solution to a specific engineering
problem of backward compatibility and forward expansion.

Or so I happen to think this year.

PS: Unicode is kludgier than UTF-8.  But it's the only game in town.
Chip Salzenberg <>

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