Re: Exciting new software release!

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Tue Apr 08 2003 - 11:40:25 EDT

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    John Cowan <cowan at mercury dot ccil dot org> wrote:

    >> Does the "-ny" subtag fail this criterion because RFC 3066 does not
    >> explicitly assign the ISO 3166-2 interpretation?
    > Yes. The only forms that work even when unregistered are <aa>, <aaa>,
    > <aa>-<bb>, <aaa>-<bb>, and private-use forms beginning with "x-",
    > where <aa> is an ISO 639-1 code, <aaa> is an ISO 639-2 code for a
    > language that doesn't have an ISO 639-1 code, and <bb> is an ISO
    > 3166-1 code.

    Well, I'll be. It does say that. I had it wrong in LTag all along.
    Good thing I pulled it.

    OK, I'll fix this and add the thick "don't use" warnings, and mail it to
    John. Anyone else who wants it will have to email me individually to
    request it.

    >> But I'd like to get this third-subtag question resolved first.
    > ObPedantic: In the technical language of the RFC, it's the second
    > subtag: foo-bar-baz has foo as the primary tag, bar as the first
    > subtag, and baz as the second subtag.

    I'm still pretty sure of myself on this one. Section 2.1, "Language tag

    > The language tag is composed of one or more parts: A primary language
    > subtag and a (possibly empty) series of subsequent subtags.

    Section 2.2, "Language tag sources":

    > The following rules apply to the primary subtag:
    > - All 2-letter subtags are interpreted according to assignments found
    > in ISO standard 639, "Code for the representation of names of
    > languages" [ISO 639], or assignments subsequently made by the ISO
    > 639 part 1 maintenance agency or governing standardization bodies.
    > ...
    > The following rules apply to the second subtag:
    > - All 2-letter subtags are interpreted as ISO 3166 alpha-2 country
    > codes from [ISO 3166], or subsequently assigned by the ISO 3166
    > maintenance agency or governing standardization bodies, denoting
    > the area to which this language variant relates.
    > ...
    > There are no rules apart from the syntactic ones for the third and
    > subsequent subtags.

    So foo is primary subtag, bar is second subtag, baz is third subtag.
    FWIW, I also used to think it was primary, first sub, second sub, and I
    still think it would make more sense that way. But that's not what the
    RFC says.

    -Doug Ewell
     Fullerton, California

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