Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 6th Sep 2018 23:34 UTC

"People have a really hard time understanding URLs," says Adrienne Porter Felt, Chrome's engineering manager. "They're hard to read, it's hard to know which part of them is supposed to be trusted, and in general I don't think URLs are working as a good way to convey site identity. So we want to move toward a place where web identity is understandable by everyone - they know who they're talking to when they're using a website and they can reason about whether they can trust them. But this will mean big changes in how and when Chrome displays URLs. We want to challenge how URLs should be displayed and question it as we're figuring out the right way to convey identity."

Judging by the reactions across the web to this news, I'm going to have the minority opinion by saying that I'm actually a proponent of looking at what's wrong with the status quo so we can try to improve it. Computing is actually an incredibly conservative industry, and far too often the reaction to "can we do this better?" is "no, because it's always been that way".

That being said, I'm not a fan of such an undertaking in this specific case being done by a for-profit, closed entity such as Google. I know the Chromium project is open source, but it's effectively a Google project and what they decide goes - an important effort such as modernizing the URL scheme should be an industry-wide effort.

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RE[4]: Conservative
by galvanash on Fri 7th Sep 2018 16:28 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Conservative"
Member since:

Its 2018... UTF8 is plain text.

Reply Parent Score: 6

v RE[5]: Conservative
by shogun56 on Fri 7th Sep 2018 18:32 in reply to "RE[4]: Conservative"
RE[6]: Conservative
by ssokolow on Fri 7th Sep 2018 19:23 in reply to "RE[5]: Conservative"
ssokolow Member since:

UTF-8 is NOT remotely plain text. Are you telling me you can understand this as written?
\x6d\x79\x20\x6d\x6f\x74\x68\x65\x72\x20\x28\x77\x65\x6e \x74\x29\x20\x74\x6f\x20\x40\x6d\x61\x72\x6b\x65\x74\x21

Plain text means 7-bit ascii at most and is frequently reduced further to be the set of "printable characters".

If someone wants to be stupid and send non-plain text in email then they are required to multi-part/mime it. That they put crap in the Subject header means they are dumber still.

How anglocentric of you.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[6]: Conservative
by galvanash on Sat 8th Sep 2018 00:08 in reply to "RE[5]: Conservative"
galvanash Member since:

UTF-8 is NOT remotely plain text. Are you telling me you can understand this as written?
\x6d\x79\x20\x6d\x6f\x74\x68\x65\x72\x20\x28\x77\x65\x6e \x74\x29\x20\x74\x6f\x20\x40\x6d\x61\x72\x6b\x65\x74\x21

No, because that isn't UTF-8, that is a bunch of unnecessary escape sequences that don't serve any purpose. I can understand "my mother (went) to @market!" though just fine, why didn't you just type that? That is UTF-8 plain text, there is no need to escape it, because this website (and just about any piece of modern software) understands it just fine.

Best part is you could have typed "Τη γλώσσα μου έδωσαν ελληνική" or "Стоял он, дум великих полн" or "ಬಾ ಇಲ್ಲಿ ಸಂಭವಿಸು ಇಂದೆನ್ನ ಹೃದಯದಲಿ" and if I spoke those languages I would have understood them too - and you don't need to escape them, because they are plain text.

What you call "plain text" is what Unicode was created to fix. 128 characters is a bug, not a feature. Every character on this website is UTF-8... Are you telling me you can't understand it?

Edited 2018-09-08 00:14 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5