As to the concern in your second paragraph: I am very sorry that I haven’t been able to follow up 639 issues as closely as I would have wished to during the last several months. I am now in the process of catching up, doing quite a lot of it on my free time. Please let us not discuss this under the current thread. (To avoid drowning: please just one issue per thread.)
The main issue here seems to have two aspects: (1) Should 639-5 have “group nodes” at positions in the hierarchy where there is just one (and cannot theoretically be more than one) sub-item. (2) If so, is the proposal below ok.
I don’t have strong opinions, but some experts did express very clearly during the development of 639-5 that it is indeed desirable to have such “group nodes”. As project editor I just implemented what was a clear consensus among project participants: (a) All “top nodes” need to be “group nodes”; (b) “important” nodes further down (e.g. hyx) should be “group nodes”. The current proposal just intends to fill a gap (an error on the part of the project editor).
The principle was discussed during the development of 639-5. A change of the principle would be a matter of a revision of 639-5.
Standard Norge / Standards Norway
I have in the past asked specifically for a clarification of the meaning of “hyx – Armenian (family) – arménien (famille)” and “jpx – Japanese (family) – japonais (famille)” in contrast to the individual language in each case. Until that is given, I am not in favor of adding further code elements that are not clearly distinguished from individual language elements in Parts 2 and 3.
I have copied my message of 6 Sept. 2007 which includes these and a number of other questions to which you have made no response. There are also other outstanding maintenance issues with regard to Part 5, most notably that Papuan languages [paa] should be above Trans-New Guinea languages hierarchically, not below it.
----- Forwarded by Joan Spanne/IntlAdmin/WCT on 2008-11-11 05:09 PM -----
2007-09-06 02:54 PM
Håvard and all,
I said in my short message that I had some other issues to raise. These are my more substantive questions:
I think there is an error with one code element:
First and foremost: what is the basis for a group being included in the code set of Part 5? What criteria should be met in order for a group (whether genetic language family or other) to warrant a code element? It appears the list is not attempting comprehensiveness in including groups that encompass all individual languages, even at the highest level of the hierarchy (130 or more of the languages in Part 3 may not map to any group code element in Part 5--geographic or genetic--depending on the genetic classification to which the language might be assigned).
What relationships may exist between code elements within Part 5? Is it a rule of the standard that no code element overlaps (in terms of the individual languages, and perhaps also proto-languages, which would come within its denotation) with another code element except in a strictly hierarchical relationship? Or may the denotations of code elements overlap, allowing for different geographic boundary sets or different genetic trees?
The standard makes almost no reference to Part 3 (apart from listing its existence) What is the relationship between code elements of Part 3 (and individual language code elements of Part 2) and code elements of Part 5? Should a Part 3 code element t map to a single code element (the lowest appropriate in a hierarchy) or could there be mappings to more than one in Part 5? (This would be related to the previous question.)
A specfic aspect of the previous quesion is: what is the distinction between a macrolanguage code element of Part 3 (by definition an individual language code element in Part 2) and a code element in Part 5 that has apparently identical meaning, but is labelled a Family--or not labeled at all (e.g. Albanian -3 [sqi] , -5 [sqj]; Quechuan -3 [que], -5 [qwe])?
What is the purpose of a language family code element for a "family" of one language that is part of a higher level family? The exception situation is noted in the document, but no motivation for this is given. This would pertain to Armenian (family) [hyx], though there are historical varieties also coded for Armenian; and Egyptian [eqx]. (What is the point even for a "family" of one that is an isolate?)
And adding to Milicent's list of questions (e.g., the Bantu question) of the meaning of specific code element (making use of Ethnlogue 15th ed. classification data), what is intended, for:
There may be more with ambiguous meanings.
I had a long discussion with Gary Simons on these matters. I will send his write-up of that in a separate email.
2008-11-11 02:28 PM
Dear ISO 639 RAs-JAC members,
At the meeting of ISO/TC 37/SC 2/WG 1 in Moscow in August 2008 representatives from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea pointed out that an ISO 639-5 identifier is needed for “Korean (family)”, corresponding to, e.g., “hyx – Armenian (family) – arménien (famille)” and “jpx – Japanese (family) – japonais (famille)”. The Korean language is an individual language (ko / kor), which is the sole member of the Korean language family. The input from the Korean delegates was accepted by the WG, and it was explained that the process of including an identifier for “Korean (family)” would be brought forward to the 639 RAs-JAC.
Finding a suitable identifier starting with k is next to impossible.
English name: Korean (family)
French name: coréen (famille)
Any comments or discussion?
Standard Norge / Standards Norway
Postboks 242, NO-1326 Lysaker
besøksadresse / visiting address: Strandveien 18
tel: (+47) 67838600 | faks / fax: (+47) 67838601
direkte tel / direct tel: (+47) 67838645
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