Practical International Data Management - Languages

Table of Contents


Languages are an important consideration in international data management. A person's language is often of great imporatance to an individual, as the many tensions between language groups on various parts of the planet attest.

Depending on how languages are defined and counted, there are between 5000 and 10000 languages spoken on the planet, many of which do not have a written form. The value a person places on the correct language being used differs, from countries where a lingua franca may acceptably be used, to those where any errors will cause immediate animosity.

Languages are spoken by people, not by countries, and every country has speakers from more than one language group, both indigenous and foreign. Defaulting to languages of a region rather than a person is bad practice and needs refinement.



This site used flags from one nation to indicate languages, though all these languages are spoken in many more countries

Cité Pasteu, Berlin, Germany



    Once there was a little o,
    with an accent on top like só.

    It started out as UTF8,
    (universal since '98),
    but the program only knew latin1,
    and changed little ó to "ó" for fun.

    A second program saw the "ó"
    and said "I know HTML entity!"
    So "ó" was smartened to "ó"
    and passed on through happily.

    Another program saw the tangle
    (more precisely, ampersands to mangle)
    and thus the humble "ó"
    became "ó"



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