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CLDR Ticket #6335(closed: fixed)

Opened 6 years ago

Last modified 4 months ago

Incomplete alphabet for KEA locale

Reported by: waldir@… Owned by: pedberg
Component: other Data Locale:
Phase: Review: emmons
Weeks: Data Xpath:



The locale is currently missing the n-diaeresis character (n̈ ), which aims to represent the velar nasal sound, /ŋ/. Unfortunately, there isn't a Unicode character for that symbol. I therefore request the addition of the ñ character to the Main Letters list, as a replacement (and, of course, its removal from the auxiliary characters list).

Below is further background to justify the request:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N-diaeresis explains that «the n-diaeresis appears in very few languages, and is thus not represented on any computer keyboards in any languages. It is also not available as an HTML entity. Neither "N̈ " nor "n̈ " are characters in the Unicode character set, and have to be represented as a letter "N" (or "n") and combining diaeresis U+0308.»

Because of that, many people have been using the ñ instead, which is much easier to input and display. Particularly, Manuel Veiga, the scholar behind the main linguistic works describing the language, and the principal promoter of its standardization and legal ratification, has recently published a dictionary (Dicionário Cabo-Verdiano-Português, 2012), where he states that he chose to use ñ instead of the n-diaeresis.

In fact, ALUPEC (the official alphabet for writing the Cape-Verdean creole) has undergone similar changes, such as the occurrences (in the first version, from 1979) of ĵ, ŝ, ẑ, ĉ (and others) being later replaced by dj, x, j and tx, respectively. So there is certainly precedence for such replacements.


Change History

comment:1 Changed 6 years ago by emmons

  • Owner changed from anybody to pedberg
  • Priority changed from assess to medium
  • Status changed from new to assigned
  • Milestone changed from UNSCH to 24rc

comment:2 Changed 6 years ago by pedberg

  • Status changed from assigned to accepted
  • Xref set to 6333
  • Review set to emmons

Currently, our kea data includes no strings containing either n-diaeresis or n-tilde, other than the n-tilde currently in the aux exemplars set, so no help there.

All of the evidence I see suggests that n-diaeresis ({n\u0308}, n̈) is really what we should add to the main exemplars, rather than n-tilde (ñ):
• The post-1998 ALUPEC orthography uses n-diaeresis, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ALUPEC
• A document from the Cape Verde Creole Institute mentions "N (ku un trema)" which is N with a diaeresis, see http://www1.umassd.edu/SpecialPrograms/CaboVerde/ibrito1.html
• The Wikipedia article about N-diaeresis mentions that it is used in the Cape Verde Creole orthography, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N-diaeresis

Therefore we should add {n\u0308} to the main exemplars and keep n-tilde in the aux exemplars as an alternate for it. If at some future point ALUPEC is updated to use n-tilde instead of n-diaeresis then we can update the exemplars, but we should not attempt to be proactive about pushing or anticipating such a change.

comment:3 Changed 6 years ago by emmons

  • Status changed from accepted to closed
  • Resolution set to fixed

Your analysis is spot on, Peter. We always have to careful about not pushing or anticipating changes in the orthography of a given language. Thanks for looking into this.

comment:4 follow-up: ↓ 5 Changed 6 years ago by waldir@…

Hi all. I hope this still gets seen, although the ticket's been closed: Unfortunately the premise of the ticket (that the n-diaeresis is missing) was incorrect. It turns out there is a more recent official decree, Decreto-Lei nº 8/2009 (which I was unaware of until yesterday) that explicitly includes ñ in the core alphabet: http://repositorio.ul.pt/bitstream/10451/574/2/19863_ulsd_re488_Appendix_I.pdf

See §4.4 of the introductory text (p.19) and the article #2 (p.20). Note especially that although ñ is included in the alphabet, it does not represent the palatal nasal /ɲ/ but instead the velar nasal /ŋ/, which was previously represented by the n-diaeresis. This is said explicitly in the 4.4. paragraph, and is implicit in the lists of article #2 since those include ñ in the core alphabet as well as {nh} as a digraph.

I'm sorry for providing less robust arguments when I opened this ticket, but I hope this new information clears up any doubts about the issue and resolves it definitely.

comment:5 in reply to: ↑ 4 ; follow-up: ↓ 6 Changed 6 years ago by srl

Replying to waldir@…:

Hi all. I hope this still gets seen, although the ticket's been closed:

Once it's fixed, it may be better to file a new ticket.

comment:6 in reply to: ↑ 5 Changed 5 years ago by waldir@…

Replying to srl:

Replying to waldir@…:

I hope this still gets seen, although the ticket's been closed:

Once it's fixed, it may be better to file a new ticket.

Thanks. I opened a new one, ticket:6636.

comment:7 Changed 5 years ago by emmons

  • Milestone 24rc deleted

Milestone 24rc deleted

comment:8 Changed 4 months ago by mark

  • Component changed from main to other

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