Translating the standard
Marcel Schneider via Unicode
unicode at unicode.org
Mon Mar 12 03:34:01 CDT 2018
On Mon, 12 Mar 2018 07:39:53 +0000, Alastair Houghton wrote:
> On 11 Mar 2018, at 21:14, Marcel Schneider via Unicode wrote:
> > Indeed, to be fair. And for implementers, documenting themselves in English
> > may scarcely ever have much of a problem, no matter whatʼs the locale.
> Agreed. Implementers will already understand English; you can’t write computer software
> without, since almost all documentation is in English, almost all computer languages are
> based on English, and, to be frank, a large proportion of the software market is itself
> English speaking. I have yet to meet a software developer who didn’t speak English.
> That’s not to say that people wouldn’t appreciate a translation of the standard, but there are,
> as others have pointed out, obvious maintenance problems, not to mention the issue that
> plagues some international institutions, namely the fact that translations are necessarily
> non-canonical and so those who really care about the details of the rules usually have to refer
> to a version in a particular language (sometimes that language might be French rather than
> English; very occasionally there are two versions declared, for political reasons, to both be
> canonical, which is obviously risky as there’s a chance they might differ subtly on some point,
> perhaps even because of punctuation).
Sometimes it occurred in the EU that the French version was so sloppy it transformed the issue
to entirely another one, but at the Unicode‐ISO/IEC merger the bad will was clearly on the other
> In terms of widespread understanding of the standard, which is where I think translation is
> perhaps more important, I’m not sure translating the actual standard itself is really the way
> forward. It’d be better to ensure that there are reliable translations of books like
> Unicode Demystified or Unicode Explained - or, quite possibly, other books aimed more at
> the general public rather than the software community per se.
Good point. What we need most of all is a complete terminology, as well as full ranges of
character names in every language, to enable people to talk about it after reading in English.
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