[Mono-dev] mcs default encoding: Latin1 or not

Atsushi Eno atsushi at ximian.com
Thu Aug 25 15:25:23 EDT 2005

After a few talk on irc with Miguel I reverted default encoding part
from locale dependent encoding to Latin1 (codepage 28591) and decided
to start a long ;-) discussion.

I still (of course;) don't think we should use Latin1 as default
encoding, since it is totally foreign in some non-EuroAmerican
people like me.  .NET csc defaults it to the native encoding.
For some people in Boston maybe it is Latin1, while for example
I have Shift_JIS (it is  kinda standard encoding in Japan, along
with EUC-JP on Unix).

We certainly have several Latin1 source files, thus for mcs itself
it would be safer just to keep using codepage 28591. But I don't
think either that mcs is just for mcs itself, or that mcs is just
for Latin1 people.

Changing the default encoding will bring some confusion on those
people who used to write sources in Latin1 encoding, not limited
to mcs. But it is not culture-neutral solution to keep using
Latin1 as the default.

It will even bring confusion on such ASP.NET applications which
were written in Latin1 encoding. That is what we Japanese had
actually experienced. It never worked without changing fileEncoding
in web.config or changing all sources from shift_jis to utf-8.
Latin1 people had been happy while we weren't.

Well, actually changing default encoding is not likely to help
us anyways, since on large amount of modern Linux environment
the default encoding is likely to be UTF-8.

Thus I think the decision is, whether we are for culture
neutralism, or for convenience of Latin1 people. There is no
reason I stand for the latter, at least based on the factors
I listed above.

Atsushi Eno

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