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Ar 12:00 -0500 2000-03-03, scríobh Milicent K Wewerka:
>I think the problem with the codes for Norwegian arises from the
>existence of three codes.  If one is using codes "nob" and "nno," then
>what does "nor" represent?

"nor" represents an earlier time in bibliographical practice when the
distinction was not made. In a perfect world, someone would be hired to
update all those "nor" records to "nob" and "nno". Perhaps practice of the
Norwegian national library (and those of Sweden and Denmark) could be
consulted.

>A colleague of mine pointed out that a similar situation exists in
>modern Greek with Demotic and Katharevusa usage.  Will we have to deal
>with this situation also?

No, because Greeks do not consider these two different languages. They do
not publish dual-language schoolbooks, or require both to appear on
passports.

>When 639-2 was developed, the code "esk" for Eskimo was eliminated
>because the four added codes for Yupik, Greenlandic, Inuktitut, and
>Inupiaq covered all the Eskimo languages.

Iñupiaq.

>If we have separate codes for the two forms of Mari or the two forms
>of Sorbian, what use would be made of the existing codes for Mari or
>Sorbian?

They were errors, I suppose. What can be said? For non-bibliographic
purposes, languages like these whose users may wish to avail of
spellcheckers and so forth, do need to be able to tag their data uniquely.
But for Mari and Sorbian I suggest an Ndebele solution: reassign the
existing code and add a second code. One would then have to review the
catalogue records for the books presently using the old code. Or?

>Perhaps we should have a principle that the "collective" code is
>discontinued (withdrawn, deprecated, etc.) when all constituent
>elements are represented by other codes.

We have two situations: the Norwegian one, which is similar to the
Serbocroation one, and the Ndebele/Mari/Sorbian one.

Michael Everson  **  Everson Gunn Teoranta  **   http://www.egt.ie
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