Re: MCW encoding of Hebrew (was RE: Response to Everson Ph and why Jun 7? fervor)

From: Dean Snyder (
Date: Mon May 24 2004 - 19:54:53 CDT

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    Kenneth Whistler wrote at 4:31 PM on Monday, May 24, 2004:

    >This kind of data, by the way, is what Michael Everson keeps pointing
    >to as widespread in Semitic studies -- and it requires more than
    >blind reliance on Hebrew string matching to expect to find matches.
    >Even after you get the 22-letter conventions between the ASCII
    >Latin forms and Hebrew lined up correctly, you *still* need to
    >account for all the *other* conventions in use, including
    >morphological marking and editorial conventions for lacunae,
    >interpolated text, and everything else that might be sitting in
    >the data. Compared to those kinds of problems, the issue of
    >whether the 22 basic Semitic letters can also be represented in
    >a Phoenician script or not pales to the minor molehill it actually
    >is, in my opinion.

    I don't follow the logic here - we have acknowledged "problems" now, so
    let's keep adding to them, and do so by using the same models used to
    create the original problems!

    But what really strikes me is your ignoring of a most glaring issue -
    these other problematic, legacy encodings or transliterations of Hebrew
    ARE DEAD ENDS; they will be gone in 10 years; nobody will be using them.
    But Unicode, hopefully, will be around much longer as THE international
    STANDARD - and we will be forever stuck with the PROBLEMS IN UNICODE you
    are saying we need to create now.


    Dean A. Snyder

    Assistant Research Scholar
    Manager, Digital Hammurabi Project
    Computer Science Department
    Whiting School of Engineering
    218C New Engineering Building
    3400 North Charles Street
    Johns Hopkins University
    Baltimore, Maryland, USA 21218

    office: 410 516-6850
    cell: 717 817-4897

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