ISO 639 name change: Songhai languages

Kent Karlsson kent.karlsson14 at
Sat Jan 6 21:23:32 CET 2007

John Cowan wrote:
> > Tavultesoft Keyman has a list of available keyboard layouts with
> > indications of which languages each is intended for, as based on
> > Ethnologue.  In the case of some African languages the Ethnologue
> > language classification is not the appropriate level - e.g. a
> > is really not set up for a variety(ies) of Fula/Fulfulde/Pulaar as
> > Ethnologue defines it(them), but for Fula in the orthography defined
> > on a country level(s).
> This is exactly the sort of evidence that would persuade 
> 639-3/RA to add a new macrolanguage.

No, why? Keyboard layouts is quite out of scope for that.
Take for instance Swedish and Finnish keyboards. By tradition
they are the same (disregarding minor differences over time
and system lines). Still it there be no point in introducing
a macrolanguage covering Finnish and Swedish (those languages
not being even remotely related).

Conversely, that two (or more) languages share a macrolanguage
code is no reason to necessarily have the same keyboard layout
for them.

> ISO 639-6 contains codes for language collections, macrolanguages,
> individual languages, and varieties of individual languages, including
> modal (spoken/written/signed), geographical, and 
> sociolinguistic variants.
> Entities also in 639-3 or 639-6 will share codes; other entities will
> have 4-letter codes.

I guess the last "-6" is a mistype, and that it should be "-5".

		/kent k

More information about the Ietf-languages mailing list