Zhang, referring to your points below, (which are very clear, thank you) I
do need to ask something. My own knoweldge of the languages we refer to in
US library work as "CJK" (Chinese, Japanese, Korean) is practically nil but
I've read the descriptions of how they were rendered in Unicode and was
given the impression that:

1) You can tell what language group you are in based on the Unicode hex
value range in the data. So for a given field, you can tell whether it is
Chinese or Japanese, for example. Is this not true?

2) That there is some ambiguity with a set of characters called the "CJK
unified ideographs" or "Han" segment of Unicode. This segment is used in
all three languages although the meanings of the ideographs depends on the
context of the language using it. The display of the glyphs, however, is
the same in all three languages. But you seem to be saying that this isn't
the case (your #3).

I'm trying to think of situations with Western European languages where
either indexing or display would depend on knowing which language I was
processing. The only thing I can think of is sorting, since I've heard that
some languages use different sort orders for accented characters. Are there
other instances where knowing the language is key to processing?


At 10:06 AM 11/8/2002 -0800, you wrote:
>Why we need so many language indicator for the metadata?
>1, for the user you intended to serve: for people who do not understand
>Japanese or Chinese, how can they know what data is in what language for
>those field inside of the  record?
>2. For search to work correctly: how the system index those data correctly?
>Index Chinese data with Japanese or index Japanese data with Chinese will
>only produce incorrect search result.
>3. for library system to work correctly: if you put Chinese data in Japanese
>font, or Japanese data in Chinese font, you will offend either side of
>users, it is incorrect and is culture sensitive issues. It will tell user
>how poor is this system being designed.
>4. most importantly, for globe information access: the same material should
>be matched up by any metadata search that carry the original vernacular
>representation no matter where the metadata is being made. (This issue is
>very close to the topic of next year IFLA)

Karen Coyle           [log in to unmask]