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Re: RMAIL, MIME-related bug

From: Stephen J. Turnbull
Subject: Re: RMAIL, MIME-related bug
Date: Tue, 21 Oct 2003 12:09:29 +0900
User-agent: Gnus/5.1002 (Gnus v5.10.2) XEmacs/21.5 (celeriac, linux)

>>>>> "Eli" == Eli Zaretskii <address@hidden> writes:

    >> From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <address@hidden> Date: Fri, 17
    >> Oct 2003 20:54:34 +0900

    >> What do you think tm and SEMI are?

    Eli> I don't know.  They aren't part of Emacs, so I couldn't
    Eli> possibly mean them.

I know.  The question is why aren't they?  SEMI is semi-encumbered
(the same legal issues that prevented Mule from being assigned to the
FSF), but tm (SEMI's predecessor) was written when Tomohiko Morioka
was a student, dating back to 1995 or so.  He told me that he
certainly hoped they would be distributed with Emacs and XEmacs.  I
don't know why Emacs never bothered to pick them up; I'm sure Tomo
would have signed an assignment, and SEMI could have been picked up
more or less "for free" along with Mule since it was done by Tomo
while he was employed at ETL AFAIK.

The VM libraries were written at a time when Emacs didn't support
images or audio, and Mule had been explicitly rejected.  It simply
wasn't possible to contribute them to Emacs, as they would have been
meaningless.  (Of course Kyle would never sign an assignment, but even
if Kyle would, it would have been useless effort to support FSF GNU
Emacs then.  NB: There were GNU Emacsen being distributed with the
Mule patch, and vm supported those, as it supports GNU Emacs today.)

w3.el's MIME support was also explicitly oriented toward Emacsen with
internal multimedia support.

So we come to Gnus.  The Gnus libraries were written post-Mule, with
generality clearly in mind, and will be included with Emacs in the
future.  MH-E clearly made the right decision in picking them as the
basis for its own MIME support.

So I don't see what your problem is.  Emacs's lack of a generic MIME
library seems to be just another of the tradeoffs that have to be made
in world with limited resources.  I think it was a mistake, but that's
20-20 hindsight.  In any case the lack of a generic MIME library will
soon be corrected, except that vm probably will continue to use its
idiosyncratic libraries for its own idiosyncratic reasons.

Institute of Policy and Planning Sciences     http://turnbull.sk.tsukuba.ac.jp
University of Tsukuba                    Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
               Ask not how you can "do" free software business;
              ask what your business can "do for" free software.

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