On Wed, 24 Dec 2003 00:36:48 +0100, "Markus Hoenicka"
<[log in to unmask]> said:
> > 2) I'm not convinced middle name should be in the metadata. It seems to
> > me multiple given name elements could solve the problem, though this
> > admittedly introduces the possibility for variability in coding
> > practices. The idea is:
> > <namePart type="given">Franklin</namePart>
> > <namePart type="given">Delano</namePart>
> > A processor could say the first element should be handled as a first name
> > for purposes of citation formatting or searching, and the second as a
> > "middle" name.
> This is how most (western-centric) bibliography tools do it these
> days. Non-western names may have entirely different ideas about name
> parts. For western names it is still a very practical approach that
> has it's limitations though. Justus pointed out on the RefDB list
> that in a few occasions the first given name is abbreviated (if at
> all) whereas the second is spelled out (something like "S. Michael
> Good"). Again, the personal letter would start with "Dear Michael",
> not with "Dear Steven" or whatever the "S." would spell out. In that
> case it would be wrong to treat "S" as the first name and "Michael" as
> a middle name as you would wind up doing if you simply base the
> distinction on the order of appearance.
Yeah, so in this case the "middle" name functions as a "first" name!
What a mess (and that not even considering non-Western names)...
My own (no doubt weak) solution is still to abbreviate those names in my
metadata that can be, and to not abbreviate those that can't (in a style
that does not abbreviate). So:
I would never use a style that requires the secondary-level name to be
spelled out in full though. They do exist, however, which strikes me as
a little silly.
Actually, come to think of it, perhaps the above ought to be:
<namePart type="given">S. Michael</namePart>
Still not ideal, though, but a processor could interpret it as saying
"treat this name part as a complete entity for formatting."