[rfc-i] Character sets, was Comments on draft-iab-rfcformat

Andrew Sullivan ajs at anvilwalrusden.com
Wed Dec 19 17:55:31 PST 2012

On Thu, Dec 20, 2012 at 01:13:29AM +0100, Martin Rex wrote:
> Phillip Hallam-Baker wrote:
> > 
> > Why does normative text need to be displayable on every machine?
> Why NOT?

Because the IRIX 4.x machine (which I supported in 2000 by screwing up
all routing to the machine because the daily
unfixable-remote-root-exploit-alerts made it too dangerous to be on
the same network as anyone else) that used to be in my area of
responsibility is, quite frankly, broken.  Oh, except that if would
actually be able to display almost everything anyone here is talking

I find it just impossible to believe that, in the face of a machine so
primitive that it cannot cope with several-years-old display
technologies in certain corner cases (and only some of them, note!
The plan is to offer a TTY stylesheet!) , your answer is, "This format
is too complicated," rather than, "Gee, I guess I could use my phone
to read it."  If it really is that hard for you, I am willing to
donate an Android tablet to you so that you can join us in the modern
age where we can display something more complicated than the output of
a line printer circa 1982.  

And just in case you think I have some strange GUI love, this was
written in an Emacs variant and sent from mutt.  I know: it uses
colour and line-drawing characters, so it's too sophisticated.  

> For many years there has been the possibility to publish an RFC
> in an additional format with colorful text, fancy type faces and sizes,
> graphics and all.

As the canonical format, only if yours is an exceptional case.

Andrew Sullivan
ajs at anvilwalrusden.com

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