The Unicode Standard and ISO

William_J_G Overington via Unicode unicode at
Tue Jun 12 05:26:47 CDT 2018

Hi Marcel

> I don’t fully disagree with Asmus, as I suggested to make available localizable (and effectively localized) libraries of message components, rather than of entire messages.

Could you possibly give some examples of the message components to which you refer please?

Asmus wrote:

> 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.

I am not a linguist. I am interested in languages but my knowledge of languages is little more than that of general education, though I have written a song in French.

So when Asmus wrote "Translators already know how to use such databases in their work flow, ....", I do not know how to do that myself.

> The challenge as I see it is to get them translated to all locales.

Well, yes, that is a big challenge.

It depends whether people want to get it done.

In England, with its changeable weather, part of the culture is to talk about the weather. For example, at a bus stop talking about the weather with other people: it is sociable without being intrusive or controversial. Alas it did not occur to me that that might seem strange to some people who are not from England.

I remember when I wrote about localizable sentences in this mailing list in mid-April 2009, using sentences about the weather, I hoped, in hindsight rather naively, that people on the mailing list would be interested and that translations into many languages would be posted and then things would get going.

In the event, only one person, Magnus Bodin, provided translations. Magnus provided translations into Swedish and also provided a translation for an additional sentence as well. I knew no Swedish myself. These translations have been extremely helpful in my research project as they demonstrate communication through the language barrier using encoded localizable sentences.

Yesterday I provided three example error message sentences.

Please consider one of them, which could be output as a code number, say, ::4842357:; from an application program if someone enters a letter of the alphabet into a curency field, and then displayed localized into a language by first decoding using a sentence.dat UTF-16 text file for that language that includes a line that starts ::4842357:;| and then has the localization into that particular language, the language being any language that can be displayed using Unicode.

For English, the line in the sentence.dat file would be as follows.

::4842357:;|Data entry for the currency field must be either a whole positive number or a positive number to exactly two decimal places.

It would be great if some bilingual readers of this mailing list were to post a translation of the above line of text into another language.

In my research I am using an integral sign as a base character and circled digit characters.

If possible, a character such as U+FFF7 could be encoded to be the base character as that would provide a unique unambiguous link to star space from Unicode plain text. However whether that happens at some future time will depend upon there being sufficient interest at that future time in using localizable sentences for communication through the language barrier.

William Overington

Tuesday 12 June 2018

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