Re: The Unicode Standard and ISO

From: Asmus Freytag via Unicode <>
Date: Sat, 9 Jun 2018 12:56:28 -0700
On 6/9/2018 12:01 PM, Marcel Schneider via Unicode wrote:
Still a computer should be understandable off-line, so CLDR providing a standard library of error messages could be 
appreciated by the industry.

The kind of translations that CLDR accumulates, like day, and month names, language and territory names, are a widely applicable subset and one that is commonly required in machine generated or machine-assembled text (like displaying the date, providing pick lists for configuration of locale settings, etc).

The universe of possible error messages is a completely different beast.

If you tried to standardize all error messages even in one language you would never arrive at something that would be universally useful. While some simple applications may find that all their needs for communicating with their users are covered, most would wish they had some other messages available.

To adopt your scheme, they would need to have a bifurcated approach, where some messages follow the standard, while others do not (cannot). At that point, why bother? Determining whether some message can be rewritten to follow the standard adds another level of complexity while you'd need to have translation resources for all the non-standard ones anyway.

A middle ground is a shared terminology database that allows translators working on different products to arrive at the same translation for the same things. Translators already know how to use such databases in their work flow, and integrating a shared one with a product-specific one is much easier than trying to deal with a set of random error messages.

It's pushing this kind of impractical scheme that gives standardizers a bad name.

Especially if it is immediately tied to governmental procurement, forcing people to adopt it (or live with it) whether it provides any actual benefit.

However, a high-quality terminology database recommends itself (and doesn't need any procurement standards).

Ultimately, it was its demonstrated usefulness that drove the adoption of CLDR.


Received on Sat Jun 09 2018 - 14:56:38 CDT

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