RE: Usage of CP1252 characters on

From: Gavin Nicol (
Date: Tue Jul 08 1997 - 09:01:10 EDT

Chris Pratley <> says:
>I've spent several years doing usability studies of real consumer and
>corporate users. I think you are overestimating the average
>non-technical person's tolerance for jargon and technical details. I'm
>not against having buried options (even registry entries or config
>files!) for the technical user, but expecting any normal person to have
>any patience for having to mess with "encodings" is asking for it.

By not fixing software, you will incur far greater expense, because you
will be daily creating a larger legacy to carry around.

>(In the meantime, I still can't see any reason anyone should have
>*ever* written code to output broken 0x80-0x9f HTML. Was there no
>viable alternative at the time?)

I guess it was just plain ignorance.

For backward compatability, I would recommend writing the files out in
the most appropriate encoding... in this case, CP1252. Sadly, this
will not work in the general case.

Like I said, at some point, you *will* have to break bugward combatability,
and users will have to pay a price. As more time goes by, more people
will get expectations that things will "just work", and when they don't,
you'll get more support calls than ever.

Maintaining bugward combatability is usually false economy.

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