[Haskell-cafe] Re: PROPOSAL: New efficient Unicode string library.

Brandon S. Allbery KF8NH allbery at ece.cmu.edu
Tue Oct 2 21:45:59 EDT 2007

On Oct 2, 2007, at 21:12 , Isaac Dupree wrote:

> Stefan O'Rear wrote:
>> On Tue, Oct 02, 2007 at 11:05:38PM +0200, Johan Tibell wrote:
>>>> I do not believe that anyone was seriously advocating multiple  
>>>> blessed
>>>> encodings.  The main question is *which* encoding to bless.  99+ 
>>>> % of
>>>> text I encounter is in US-ASCII, so I would favor UTF-8.  Why is  
>>>> UTF-16
>>>> better for me?
>>> All software I write professional have to support 40 languages
>>> (including CJK ones) so I would prefer UTF-16 in case I could use
>>> Haskell at work some day in the future. I dunno that who uses what
>>> encoding the most is good grounds to pick encoding though. Ease of
>>> implementation and speed on some representative sample set of  
>>> text may
>>> be.
>> UTF-8 supports CJK languages too.  The only question is efficiency
> Due to the additional complexity of handling UTF-8 -- EVEN IF the  
> actual text processed happens all to be US-ASCII -- will UTF-8  
> perhaps be less efficient than UTF-16, or only as fast?

UTF8 will be very slightly faster in the all-ASCII case, but quickly  
blows chunks if you have *any* characters that require multibyte.   
Given the way UTF8 encoding works, this includes even Latin-1 non- 
ASCII, never mind CJK.  (I think people have been missing that  
point.  UTF8 is only cheap for 00-7f, *nothing else*.)

brandon s. allbery [solaris,freebsd,perl,pugs,haskell] allbery at kf8nh.com
system administrator [openafs,heimdal,too many hats] allbery at ece.cmu.edu
electrical and computer engineering, carnegie mellon university    KF8NH

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