On his blog today, Lorenzo Alberton Talks about DBMS and the character sets they support and issues a call for help for anyone interested to help them (on the PEAR::MDB2 project) set up proper character set support for each database.
We're working on PEAR::MDB2 charset and collation support. That means that we're in the process of figuring out what's the best way to set the charset in each DBMS, and how to make it portable and consistent through all of them.
I'll try to explain how the various DBMS implement charset settings first, then describe the MDB2 status-quo regarding charset support. Finally, we'd like to get some feedback to implement a better charset support in MDB2.
He lists out the types of character sets - client, connection, database/table/field, and result - explaining each of their roles in the average connection. He then breaks out the different databases into the different settings they support for the different character set types.
The call for help comes in with him asking anyone out there with experience and skill in these areas to get in touch and help out if they can. Contact information is in the post. You can also check out some of Lukas Smith's comments over on his blog too.