Common Locale Data: Process, Issues and Challenges
Steven Loomis (Moderator) - IBM Corporation

Intended Audience: Software Engineers, Managers, Systems Analysts

Session Level: Intermediate

In the internationalization arena, Unicode has provided a lingua franca for communicating textual data. But there remain differences in the locale data used for a variety of tasks, such as formatting dates and times according to the conventions of different languages. Many of those differences are simply gratuitous; all within acceptable limits for human beings, but resulting in software failure. In many other cases there are outright errors.

The Common Locale Data Repository is a project for the exchange of culturally sensitive (locale) information used in application and system development, and to gather, store, and make available data generated in that format. The Repository is intended to become a source for such data. By pooling resources, the time and expense of collecting good data can be minimized. As well, minority languages and small countries will have a focal point for submitting data.

In this panel, the speakers will first present an overview of the CLDR project and associated XML data formats. The latest project status update and successes in adoption will be given. Finally, the panel will discuss some of the issues and difficulties in determining the correct 'common' data from among conflicting options.

The panel will consist of persons from multiple vendors involved in the data gathering and vetting process. Comments and questions will be welcomed from the audience.

Panelists include:
Vladimir Weinstein - (co-presenter) IBM Corporation
Erkki I. Kolehmainen - RILF (Research Institute for the Languages of Finland)
John C. Emmons - IBM Corporation
Mark Davis - IBM Corporation
Peter Nugent - Sun Microsystems
Tex Texin - Yahoo! Inc.