Re: About names again...

From: Michael Everson (
Date: Fri Jan 09 1998 - 06:01:01 EST

Ar 09:22 -0500 1998-01-08, scríobh Alain LaBonté:
>A 20:32 07/01/98 GMT, John Clews a écrit :
>>Don't forget that ISO NP 15924 is NOT an IT standard, so not all
>>users of this standard will have the opportunity to do such
>>conversions by computers, even though such codes may well nbe useful
>>in IT systems. Meaningful alphabetic codes are therefore likely to be
>[Alain] :
>Dont't ignore the fact that for ISO 639 or ISO 3166, which are similar in
>nature, I often have to go to a list to check what « IL » means for example
>(Israël, and not Italy) or what « iu » means, and that most Californians
>think that CA means their state rather than Canada.

And you suppose that you will have to go _less_ _often_ to the list if for
Israël the code « 376 » is used? :-)

>Computers are not just typewriters, they are there to help in
>that type of things. A catalog number is the most universal thing, it is
>efficient, it can be presented to the end-user using his own language of

If, and only if, a programmer has written an interface which allows
automatic translation of e.g. Irish Gaelic "Iosrael" to "376". Can you
guarantee that in all of my application environments? Of course you cannot.
I need "IL" and "ISR" to input. I cannot remember 376, and the level of
language support you mention is not even available for English, much less
for Irish Gaelic!

>And, should the entry be done in this language, the code can be
>produced and rendered in another language on the other side of the earth.

Language codes, script codes, and country codes are tags more than anything
else. To enter a tag, I don't need a complex interface. I need two or three
keys on my keyboard and a list of tags. It's easiest if the tags are easily

>These are user requirements, not machine requirements.

I am a user and I have a requirement to use literal script codes. On my web
site there are many directories which I name with two-letter script codes
depending on what script is dealt with inside the directory. Gods forbid
that I have to use numbers. I am seriously innumerate.

Michael Everson, Everson Gunn Teoranta **
15 Port Chaeimhghein Íochtarach; Baile Átha Cliath 2; Éire/Ireland
Guthán: +353 1 478-2597    Facsa: +353 1 478-2597 (by arrangement)
27 Páirc an Fhéithlinn;  Baile an Bhóthair;  Co. Átha Cliath; Éire

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Tue Jul 10 2001 - 17:20:38 EDT