Re: ISO/IEC 10646 as Document Character Set

Terry Allen (
Fri, 5 May 95 09:47:49 EDT

Thanks, Eric.
>Perhaps another compromise is viable. Glenn? Terry?

What I thought was agreed at Danvers (pace "decisions cannot be made at actual
meetings") was that additional documents would be produced to deal with
such issues, and 2.n would result from (somehow) combining 2.0 with
such docs.

I'd be happy to make the change to 10646 in the very next revision; I
just want to keep our rationale for 2.0 straight. I don't want anyone
to be able to argue that because 2.0 describes something not part of
current practice (10646 as doc charset), the content models may be
dismissed as similarly disconnected to reality. I want to nail down
the content models in 2.0: that's our greatest need.

Chris's suggestion that we use 10646 for the doc charset, but only
the first 256 characters in it (meaning 257-nnnnn would be UNUSED
in the sdecl?) is interesting, but I'd really like to see what the
sdecl would look like (and to try it out, too).


--- Forwarded mail from (Eric W. Sink)

X-Sender: eric@hook
Date: Sat, 06 May 1995 08:35:18 -0500
From: (Eric W. Sink)
Subject: Re: ISO/IEC 10646 as Document Character Set
X-Mailer: <Windows Eudora Version 2.0.2>

>I don't see how putting half the solution -- ISO10646 as a document
>character set, with no deployed support and no specification for
>support of other encodings -- in the 2.0 document is better than
>leaving 2.0 as is and providing a complete specification in another

It's not. I haven't changed my opinion about the technical issue. I
was simply proposing compromise language I could live with in order to
help the group reach agreement.

1. Glenn Adams says that "making 10646 the document character set is an
editorial change", (which BTW it is not), and obviously feels strongly
that it should be there.

2. Amanda Walker is for it.

3. Terry Allen is against it, and says there is consensus agreement on his
viewpoint. Furthermore, he rejected my compromise language as well.

4. Dan Connolly is against it, because adding it would be almost meaningless.

5. Albert Lunde is against it.

6. Eric Sink is against it.

(there are other opinions, but if I list them all, it will look like a vote.)

I respect everyone's point of view here, but I certainly don't see consensus
or agreement. I tried to propose compromise language so we could reach an
agreement of some sort. It didn't work, because I won Glenn Adams and lost
Terry Allen and Dan Connolly. Nice try? ;-)

Perhaps another compromise is viable. Glenn? Terry?

Dan, as document editor you have an easy way out. If there is no consensus,
and no workable compromise, then force the chair (me) to make
the decision. Then everyone can blame me for it later. However, in a WG,
failure to reach either consensus or compromise is very disappointing.

If forced, I would say that we should leave the 10646 stuff OUT of 2.0.
(Sorry Glenn, I appreciate your perspective and the effort you have put into
expressing it here.)

BTW, an earlier message I sent this morning read like this:

>No, apparently we have not. We have people proclaiming consensus of the >exactly opposite opinion. Stating consensus, when there is none, fools some >of the people, but not nearly enough.

This [poorly chosen] wording was not intended to be offensive. I am not accusing anyone, certainly not Terry, of dishonesty or misrepresentation. My apologies.

BTW2, decisions cannot be made at actual meetings. Consensus isn't real until it manifests itself on the mailing list.

Eric W. Sink
Senior Software Engineer, Spyglass

--- End of forwarded mail from (Eric W. Sink)

Terry Allen  (   O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
Editor, Digital Media Group    101 Morris St.
			       Sebastopol, Calif., 95472
occasional column at:

A Davenport Group sponsor. For information on the Davenport Group see or