Here comes the Yiddish

Sean M. Burke
Tue, 03 Dec 2002 19:14:09 -0700

At 20:49 2002-12-03 +0000, Michael Everson wrote:
>Script codes are intended to be an attribute of a script tag, and for the 
>specific needs of modern spell-checkers was the deciding and practical 
>business case. There is no script code for 1996. That was a language reform.

Okay, so language codes /can/ cover orthographies, excellent!  I want 
language codes for Yiddish in the two common orthographies for it.  What 
codes do you suggest?

>I do not want us to go down the road of making a "language code" for 
>Portuguese written in the Arabic script.

The mere fact that a formalism is potentially overly powerful isn't a 
problem in and of itself.  The fact that one can construct a AA-BB code for 
"Afrihili as spoken on Pitcairn Island" isn't a good argument against AA-BB 
codes, in the same way that one could conceivably express "Portuguese 
written in the Arabic script" isn't an argument against expressing 
orthographic variance at the level of different scripts.

Moreover, I somehow doubt that your approving these Yiddish codes would 
begin a landslide of people trying to permutate the whole namespace just 
for kicks.  But approving these could would actually help distinguish two 
widely used writing systems that do exist and that people do want to have 
language tags for.

I see no clear ,motivating, and practical reason for expressly disallowing 
script codes from being components of language codes.  And I see at least 
one good reason for allowing it:  It fills a need, easily, simply -- and 
even somewhat intuitively!

Sean M. Burke