Question on ISO-639:1988

Harald Tveit Alvestrand harald at
Wed Jun 2 06:19:08 CEST 2004

--On 1. juni 2004 15:08 +0100 Debbie Garside <debbie at> 

> It is my opinion that most people will use 639-1 (alpha2) or 639-3
> (alpha3) but that should not mean we do not cater for those that need
> 639-6 (alpha4) level of langtags (as the XML community obviously do).

objection: at this point in time, references to the "XML community" are as 
meaningful at this point as references to the "screwdriver-using community".

what level of langtags they need is totally dependent on what they are 
trying to use XML for.

I may be wearing my old curmudgeon hat, but I remain extremely skeptical of 
the sudden gush of new 639 parts - what used to be a pinhole has suddenly 
turned into a floodgate. I do not understand how it impacts the complexity 
of users's software - and that worries me.


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