re: Linux & Unicode

From: John Fieber (
Date: Thu Dec 03 1998 - 16:50:46 EST

On Wed, 2 Dec 1998, Glen wrote:

> On Slashdot, I was informed by a European that Linux had the
> "concept of locales, so Unicode doesn't matter",

Related to the earlier vi thread, are there any good references
or opinion pieces on the relationship between Unicode and POSIX
locales? With a UTF-8 locale, you can get some workable
rudimentary Unicode support with generically internationalized
applications, but it doesn't really go far enough. You still
have to stick in a fair amount of unicode specific code to Do It
Right. Locales also work well for localizing applications but
fail at multi-nationalizing them...reading/editing a Japanese
document in an otherwise French locale for example.

On the scale from simply ignoring the locale mechanism to
extending the locale model to be Unicode friendly, what is a good
position? I have some bookmarks for some Plan-9 documents on the
issue, but the pages seem to have been (re)moved.

On a tangent, X11R6 appears to have some rudimentary support for
a UTF-8 locale but I haven't been able to make it work. (I do
have a working UTF-8 locale on the underlying OS, FreeBSD.) I
was going to stick some debugging code in the relevant parts of
Xlib but haven't found the time (or disk space) yet. Anybody
have experience with this? Other wide character locales work


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