Sunday, January 28, 2007

Latin roots etc.

Well yesterday one thing came into mind - a dictionary a teacher of mine at the language school had. It was a dictionary that listed Latin words with many translations into other languages and one thing is obvious: all these words of course were similar in all languages. If you knew one of them and studied the other language it would have been easy to create the relative words following a set of rules for most of them.

So one thing should be obvious: to insert these words with their translations into OmegaWiki ... but well, there is one problem with Latin - the "normal" Latin language should not be mixed with the taxonomical Latin that is used in science ... so we need to create two languages: Latin and taxonomical Latin ... who knows if the relative language codes exist somewhere in the ISO 639 standards.



GerardM said...

On the BBC there was today the following article.. highly recommended :)

Anonymous said...

A separate language between Latin and taxonomic Latin? I'd love to see how you all would divide Linnaeus, or all the other Latin writers who came after (and before) him under such a scheme.

While we're at it, let's not forget to separate scientific English as a separate language from English--I'm sure the same justifications could be found.

GerardM said...

The names as they are used in taxonomic names would be the only ones that would carry this code for taxonomical Latin.

The work of Carl von Linné itself would be Latin. In scientific English there are indeed also plenty of expressions used that you do not want in a spell checker.


Minh Nguyễn said...

It’s true that taxonomical Latin has taken on a life of its own, with animals like Proceratium google (“google” being decidedly not Latin). If the purpose is to make a less lax spell checker, it might be more helpful to specify a Collection Membership or implement something akin to the English Wiktionary’s {{context}} template (most of the Web calls them “tags”), instead of creating separate “languages” for domain-specific purposes.

Many words that have entered popular usage on the Web wouldn’t be accepted elsewhere. It might be helpful to generalize your solution to the taxonomic Latin problem by using a separate field (like Collection) to distinguish words in general use from jargon.

GerardM said...

The words that you find in taxonomy ARE not English. Furthermore they have a completely different function within the database as well.

Given collections the value of a negative filter is absolutely NOT what collections are there for, it makes for a horrible software environment with arbitrary special cases.