[Fwd]: Response to Mark's message]

Michael Everson everson at evertype.com
Wed Apr 9 21:42:59 CEST 2003

At 14:57 -0400 2003-04-09, Martin Duerst wrote:
>At 10:08 03/04/09 -0700, Mark Davis wrote:
>>ISO-639 fails miserably as unambiguous specification of written language. I
>>realize that the proponents of ISO-639 don't even want it to apply to
>>written language. But for information technology, distinguishing written
>>language is the 999% case; merely spoken language is mostly unproductive.

ISO 639 gives codes for names of languages. You want other kinds of 
information to be associated with the languages, such as script 
(where more than one script is  used) or orthography (differences in 
use of the same script) are concerned.

I want to see a comprehensive solution here. I don't want us to 
innovate something that has to be deprecated when 639-3 comes along. 
Frankly I think we can get on without 639-3. We already have the SIL 
codes and can process that de-facto along with what we've already 
got. Then we can hand TC37 a fait-accompli. The only problem really 
is getting a firm ID on some of the existing ambiguous codes.

(That won't be a popular suggestion, I predict.)

15924 doesn't have a full complement of RA/JAC members yet by the 
way. Formally that may delay the RA from doing some things.

>>RFC 3066 is somewhat better, but has the problems as discussed on this list.
>>As to the issue of whether RFC 3066bis should include SIL codes directly or
>>not, technically I don't much care. I suspect it would be slightly cleaner
>>if 3066bis just included some ISO standard.
>>However, the need for the addition of a script subtag to 3066bis is clear
>>and present. And if 3066bis does not address that issue *very* soon,

So who's drafting it?

>PLEASE!!! Stop complaining, start acting. Please submit the
>necessary registrations for the 10 or 20 combinations that you
>need, and follow through with these registrations.

I'm reluctant to approve 10 or 20 registrations in a hurry which 
might have to be deprecated later. I would like to see all the i's 
dotted and the t's crossed. And I don't want to start adding script 
subtags in registrations until they are properly registered in 15924.
Michael Everson * * Everson Typography *  * http://www.evertype.com

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