Re: Tagging orthographic systems (was: (iso639.186) the

From: John Hudson (
Date: Wed Sep 13 2000 - 18:34:40 EDT

Tom Emerson wrote:

>Rick McGowan writes:
> > Well, the tags don't force one to tag an entire document with the
> > same tag. They just provide a space. It's up to the document
> > format to decide whether to tag a whole document or tag by
> > language/orthography runs.

>That isn't the point I'm trying to raise.

>My point is that for some languages there is no single orthography
>that can ever be nailed down. It may depend on the individual
>author. Outside of a constrained register corpus you these tags would
>be less useful.

Individual authors' idiosyncratic spellings are not a candidate for
tagging; widely used and, in the case of German, for example, officially
published orthographies are.

>This shouldn't be taken as an argument against their use, just to say
>that they are not necessarily any more useful than the ISO-639 tags in
>some cases.

They are more useful insofar as they extend the kind of information that is
recorded in ISO 639. They are certainly more useful if you actually need
codes that distinguish different orthographies, rather than simply
languages abstracted from all actual language use.

John Hudson

Tiro Typeworks A man was meant to be doubtful about
Vancouver, BC himself, but undoubting about the truth; this has been exactly reversed. G.K. Chesterton

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Tue Jul 10 2001 - 17:21:13 EDT