[Python-Dev] Base-85

Antoine Pitrou solipsis at pitrou.net
Sat Aug 2 21:58:50 CEST 2008

Martin v. Löwis <martin <at> v.loewis.de> writes:
> P.S. Just in case it isn't clear: I would oppose any specific proposal
> to add this Ascii85 algorithm to the standard library. It would sound
> like we don't have any real problems to solve.

According to Wikipedia, "its main modern use is in Adobe's PostScript and
Portable Document Format file formats".

It is also used by git for diffs of binary files, and those diffs are supposedly
understood by other VCSes like Mercurial... indeed, Mercurial has a Python
extension for base85 encoding (but licensed under the GPL):
(I suppose Bazaar has something similar)

Endly, since this encoding allows to pack more bytes into the same number of
ASCII characters than its traditional alternatives, it is likely to gain
traction in  applications which need to create a pure ASCII representation of
binary data.



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