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Re: Draft for review: Personal names around the world

From: Richard Ishida <ishida@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 2011 13:27:15 +0100
Message-ID: <4E43CAA3.2090905@w3.org>
To: Gunnar Bittersmann <gunnar@bittersmann.de>
CC: www-international@w3.org
On 03/08/2011 20:51, Gunnar Bittersmann wrote:
> 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
> http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alphabetische_Sortierung
> 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.)

'Previous name' is indeed fairly common on English forms I've seen.

> 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
> experience).

I agree. I also changed the wording of the second input field label to 
read "Latin transcription (if different)".
> Gunnar

Richard Ishida
Internationalization Activity Lead
W3C (World Wide Web Consortium)


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Received on Thursday, 11 August 2011 12:27:41 UTC

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