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Re: Armenian numbering: findings, recommendations and request to CSS

From: Leif Halvard Silli <lhs@malform.no>
Date: Mon, 16 Feb 2009 01:01:35 +0100
Message-ID: <4998ACDF.2050409@malform.no>
To: Thomas Phinney <tphinney@cal.berkeley.edu>
CC: Robert J Burns <rob@robburns.com>, W3C Style List <www-style@w3.org>, fantasai <fantasai.lists@inkedblade.net>
Thomas Phinney 2009-02-15 22.06:
> Just trying to clarify differences between collation and
> numbering-using-letters:
> Alphabetical collation is about taking a list and putting it in
> alphabetical order according to the text of each item.
> Alphabetic-style numbering-using-letters is about assigning letters to
> list items which are in an arbitrary order, with no necessary relation
> to the beginning letters of the text of each item.

However, the cathegories has to be defined prior to the collation. 
And thus it seems that in e.g. German, one *most often* do not 
gather anything into the cathegories "Ä, Ö, Ü", but rather treats 
words/names on those letters e.g as Ae, Oe and Ue. Hence: The 
force of the Basic Modern Latin alphabet is active during 
collation as well (that is at least one possible interpretation).

> Collation requires rules for processing all possible characters of an
> item, including those which can't occur at the beginning of a word,
> information about characters which should be ignored for collation,
> etc. 

True. Though, fortunately, for a list-format that is based on 
collation, it is enough to know the first-letter rules.

>Numbering-using-letters can ignore those factors.

It is *possible* for such numbering to ignore those factors. But 
e.g. the Russian list convention that I explained expresses a deep 
understanding of the exactly those rules you described above.

> As long as the various languages used by a given writing system don't
> actually have conflicting alphabetization rules, collation can
> usefully use ordering and rules which are a superset of those required
> by any single language. 

As with German. And Norwegian. (The Norwegian spesific letters 
weren't allways the last letters of the alphabet. But we treat 
them as independent letters and not - as often in German - as 
variants of "normal" letters.)

>Numbering-using-letters is entirely language-specific.

I would rather say that they are convention-spesific and can be 
quite language agnostic, more so than collation.
leif halvard silli
Received on Monday, 16 February 2009 00:02:20 UTC

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