[whatwg] Offline Web Apps

Maciej Stachowiak mjs at apple.com
Sat Sep 22 18:20:12 PDT 2007

On Sep 22, 2007, at 8:48 AM, Křištof Želechovski wrote:

> I do not share your reservations.  The file contents does not  
> constitute its
> property and, unlike properties, much work is actually needed to  
> extract it.
> Therefore the name chosen seems very appropriate.
> How is the character encoding determined when the file is read as  
> text?

Obviously, if the way to get the contents as text requires providing  
the encoding, then it has to be a method. My comment was about the no- 
argument methods. But you have a point that reading from disk is not a  
simple get operation. Probably the methods should have names based on  
read or the like (read(), readAsText(), etc) to indicate this. Also,  
they should arguably be asynchronous since reading from the disk can  
be slow, especially for large files, and it is undesirable to block  
the main thread.

Also, I'm not sure how a web app can be expected to know the encoding  
of a text file on disk.

> An arbitrary file is a sequence of bytes and it is up to the  
> application how
> these bytes are interpreted as characters.
> Moreover, a text file conceptually does not contain a string; it  
> contains,
> by convention, lines of text.  The result of reading a file as text  
> should
> be a sequence of lines, not a string, with the line breaking  
> characters
> removed.

Disagree. If the goal is to later upload the text file, then you want  
to preserve line endings and other special characters as-is.


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