UTF-8 support on Mac (was: Re: Last Call: UTF-16

From: Deborah Goldsmith (goldsmith@apple.com)
Date: Wed Aug 18 1999 - 19:07:22 EDT

> No they don't. They translate UTF-8 pages into Mac Roman, which means that
> Icelandic thorn and most everything else in Latin (including Irish
> characters!) gets represented by a ? , which is not what I want.

Actually, they translate UTF-8 pages into conglomerations of whatever Mac
encodings the base system supports. Characters not in one of the installed
Mac scripts do get translated to ?, but then again most Unicode
implementations do not support the whole standard at this time.
Unfortunately, sometimes you have to have some really odd scripts installed
to get the character you want. MacIcelandic has thorn, but conflicts with
MacRoman. However, by a stroke of luck (or rather, by a stroke of an overly
full character set), MacKorean does have Icelandic thorn, so I can type it:


Now, you could be forgiven for wondering why you have to use a Korean input
method to type an Icelandic thorn (unless you are using the
Icelandic-localized Mac OS). Apple fervently hopes that developers of web
browsers and e-mail clients will adopt our direct Unicode drawing and input
services so that customers will not have to go through these gyrations. In
fact, all of our standard installed fonts (Times, Helvetica, New York, etc.)
have had a complete Latin-1 repertoire since Mac OS 8.5. We are just waiting
for applications to take advantage of it.

If you want this support in your browser or e-mail client, now would be a
good time to petition the vendor to support it.

> I didn't get anything useful in Eudora for this.

I'm not familiar with how Eudora handles UTF-8. I'm pretty sure it uses TEC.
You would have had to have Japanese and Korean installed to see anything,

Deborah Goldsmith
Manager, International Toolbox Group
Apple Computer, Inc.

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