SUTRS and InternationalString

Issue raised by: Margaret St. Pierre 23 Apr 1996

The usage of InternationalString for a SUTRS record is not implicit. For protocol version 2, Should a SUTRS record use the General String Tag or a Visible String Tag for the International String?

Although the Standard states:

InternationalString ::= GeneralString
-- When version 2 is in force, this collapses to VisibleString.
-- That is, only characters in thevisibleString repertoire may be used.
-- (Datatype compatibility with version 2 is not affected ...

there is no mention of what tag should be used for International String.

GeneralString must be used.

The tagging complexities are for compatibility of Z39.50-1995 with Z39.50-1992, and therefore apply only to definitions that were in the 92 version. SUTRS was not. Definitions like SUTRS that are new in 95 do not raise these compatibility concerns for version 2 use. SUTRS may be used in version 2 as defined, i.e. with the GeneralString tag.

Unfortunately though this does raise a version 2/version 3 compatibility issue (as opposed to a '92/'95 compatibility issue). A SUTRS record valid for version 3 might not be valid for version 2. When SUTRS is used in version 2, even though it carries the GeneralString tag, it may only include characters from the VisibleString repertoire. This is an unfortunate effect of the comment attached to the definition of InternationalString. That comment was developed for the 92/95 compatibility issue, but did not forsee the situatuation where a new definition uses InternationalString.

A defect report will be generated to clarify this.

Status: Approved (10/96)
Library of Congress
Library of Congress Help Desk (10/18/96)