Kind of….I’m sure most people think gmail is the bomb but until today it didn’t work in Japanese as it only supported Unicode. Only supporting unicode sounds like a great idea since that handles all languages but people that are not using a unicode capable email client will not be able to read your non-English mail. While you might think that would not be common in 2005 it’s actually very common in Japan. It’s the 200 million cell phones where most Japanese email happens that only support Japanese encodings.
So, today, gmail finally added more languages and if you set your language to Japanese it will send your mail in a Japanese encoding. That fixes it for Japanese people, unfortunately it’s still broken for non Japanese people trying to communicate with the Japanese since those people (like me) would prefer to run gmail with an English interface but still have it send in Japanese. That unfortunately is still not an option.
This is the kind of crap that happens when programmers don’t eat their own dogfood.
“Eating your own dog food is the quaint name that we in the computer industry give to the process of actually using your own product. I had forgotten how well it worked, until a month ago…” (from Joelonsoftware.com)