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Re: Draft for review: Personal names around the world

From: Gunnar Bittersmann <gunnar@bittersmann.de>
Date: Wed, 03 Aug 2011 21:51:24 +0200
Message-ID: <4E39A6BC.8070804@bittersmann.de>
To: www-international@w3.org
I wrote (2011-07-30 17:23+02:00):
> some small things. I save the big things for another mail.

Which is now (along with some more small things). It’s the last part 
from my side, I hope.

> Only the second paragraph makes clear what names the first paragraph is
> about. I suggest to add 'Icelandic': In the Icelandic name Björk
> Guðmundsdóttir …

The same can be said about section Different order of parts that reads 
“In the name 毛泽东”. Make it “In the Chinese name 毛泽东”.

There’s a typo in section Scenarios: “You are designing a form in a one 
language”. (Remove “a”.)

In section Other things, name prefixes like 'van' or 'de' are mentioned. 
It might be well in the scope of the article to point out that these 
prefixes not only cause problems for automatically splitting up names, 
but also for sorting: Ludwig van Beethoven would be filed under B, while 
Steven Van Zandt would be filed under V.

It might also be worth mentioned that a special sorting system applies 
to names in German phonebooks: umlauts 'ä', 'ö', 'ü' are treated as 
'ae', 'oe', 'ue', whereas in dictionaries umlauts are treated as 'a', 
'o', 'u'.

(The reason is that a name can be spelled differently, e.g. Müller or 
Mueller. To make it easier to someone who does not know the spelling of 
a particular person, Müllers and Muellers are not separated (with 
potentially other names in between) but mixed: e.g.
Müller, Anton
Mueller, Berta
Müller, Carl)

Yet another sorting system is used in Austria, cf. German Wikipedia 

Section Inheritance of names reads “It may be better, in these cases, 
for a form to say 'Previous name' than 'Maiden name' or 'née'.” Is 
'Previous name' commonly used in the English-speaking world? It might be 
confusing when a person changes his/her name on marriage more than once 
in his/her lifetime. 'Name of birth' would be more accurate, IMHO.

('Previous name' appers again in section Other things.)

Section To split or not to split? reads “avoid limiting the field size 
for names in your database.” I wholeheartly agree from the i18n POV, but 
this is surely not what a database designer (MySQL and the like) would 
want to do for performance reasons. So for technical reason the advice 
for fields with variable lenghts is questionable.

How about adding something like “If this it not an option, be sure to 
save enough space”?

The last sample form in section Implications for character support (the 
one with 'Name (in your alphabet)' and 'Name (Latin alphabet)' should be 
designed in a way that a user whose native script is Latin does not have 
to retype her name a second time (that would make for a bad user 

Received on Wednesday, 3 August 2011 19:51:58 UTC

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