Re: [xsl] The Oxford Comma - A Gift Worth Atleast 5 Cents

Subject: Re: [xsl] The Oxford Comma - A Gift Worth Atleast 5 Cents
From: ac <ac@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 20 Jun 2008 13:43:16 -0400
Hi Wendell,

Thank you for ensuring that we keep in scope. I instigated this with an almost caricaturistic remark on human languages, at the end of my initial post. What I was thinking, that was not that clear then, was that we have to process human languages a lot. I did not check, but it is possible that most of processing and issues that come through this list are language processing related and it does not seem like it is going to get any better soon. There are also many documents, in many languages, and we need to process them, all of the time, more and more. XSLT2 is possibly our best tool so far. On this this track, we are primarily looking at processing the Oxford comma, in English, with XSLT. As here, by law, we have to support and process at least both English and French, back and forth too, on input and output, and the rules are different for each case, I may be a bit sensitive on the subject. I am sure that Ronnie took some serious time to resolve the stylesheet like he did and I only tried to optimize it further, for English in XSLT2. I am not sure if I succeeded or better, how we can further improve on this case, but I am sure that I spent some time on it and I am frightened by all that is left do, wandering how the members of this list cope (ex: EU), with so many documents and languages. Do we have the tools that we need for the job at hand? Yet, do not worry, I tame my fears and that is why I also try to optimize the logic and processing for the Oxford comma, hoping that the solution is good, but better, and especially if it is, I hope that others can optimize it further so that we can some day, settle this logic and move beyond the Oxford comma. What do you think?

Sorry for the bandwidth traffic that I may cause.

Thank you.

Wendell Piez a icrit :
At 01:52 AM 6/20/2008, you wrote:
>>>>> "ac" == ac <ac@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> writes:

    ac> Hi Colin, I would think that it is more than just orthography,
    ac> what about punctuation rules (like in this case),

That is writing, not language. Language is a spoken phenomenon.

This is a fascinating topic, but hardly in scope for this list.

Personally, I question several of the claims being made here on both sides (such as this definition of "language" as "a spoken phenomenon", which arbitrarily excludes very many phenomena which, were we not to call them "language", would need another name). However, I think it better to refer interested parties to the vast literature on the subject of Semiology. While it's tempting to weigh in here, it would hardly be a good use of our collective bandwidth.


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