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From Andrew Douglas Pitonyak <>
Subject Re: Improvements of OUString
Date Wed, 04 Dec 2013 06:26:25 GMT

On 12/03/2013 11:27 AM, Herbert Duerr wrote:
>>>> We should drop our support for ASCII?
>>> UTF-8 contains ASCII. This was one of its most important design goals
>>> and IMHO is a key factor that made this encoding such a big success.
>>> [...]
>> Hm, UTF-8 is not identical to ASCII.  What if I want to write an
>> OUString to stdout?  Does a regular printf support UTF-8 or would I need
>> a conversion from UTF-8 to ASCII for that?
> If you have an ASCII string then you can directly print it in an UTF-8 
> locale. No conversion needed. Also the inverse is true: if that string 
> was encoded as UTF-8 then you can print it directly in an ASCII 
> compatible locale. No conversion needed for the output. The result 
> would be exactly the same.
> printf() and friends support the encoding defined by the LC_CTYPE 
> environment variable. Nowadays this is very very often UTF-8, which is 
> backward compatible with ASCII.
> Some encodings are not ASCII compatible though, e.g. EBCDIC or DBCS 
> (double-byte character sets). If you printed ASCII text in such 
> environments without converting them first then you'd get gibberish. 
> So if you want to make sure that what you want is what you get then 
> you should always convert to the local encoding as determined by 
> osl_getThreadTextEncoding().
> But ASCII and UTF-8 encodings are quite dominant nowadays, especially 
> on developer machines. While we could fix all debug-printing for 
> non-ASCII compatible environments I suggest not to invest too much 
> energy into such a task. The number of developers we'd win by 
> supporting e.g. EBCDIC based development environments vs. the 
> developer investment we'd have to spend to achieve this support would 
> most probably be negative.

I would have said that the ASCII values from 0 to 127 are the same for 
UTF-8, but, ASCII values greater than 127 are a problem. I recently had 
a problem with that when a documented contained ASCII 160, a 
non-breaking space. I became aware of it when I was asked "hey, why does 
this file look different after it was converted to UTF-8?"

Andrew Pitonyak
My Macro Document:

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