Re: Pictograms (was: (TC304.2313) AND/OR: antediluvian views)

From: Alain LaBonté  (
Date: Tue Jun 13 2000 - 15:42:01 EDT

À 10:30 2000-06-13 -0800, Otto Stolz a écrit:
>It does also require careful deliberation on the designers part to avoid
>all sorts of cultural bias. If this cannot be avoided, you will end up
>with different pictograms for the various cultures -- and you are back
>to square one, as you will have to present several pictograms for different
>readers, side by side.

[Alain] In the iconic grammar that we presented at ISO 10 years ago or so,
we had the concept of icon layers to solve that problem: an international
layer, with pictograms good for most environments, and a national layer,
for eventual national -- and then an eventual regional layer [why not even
group-wise?] -- deviations.

Alain LaBonté

>And Alain will be offended by the pictogram
>tuned to his own culture being placed fifth in the lot :-)

[Alain] In my example of this morning, it was not mainly because French
was in 5th position that I was the most upset, it is because I was in a
hurry -- that was last Tuesday -- and that I had to wait for the vocal
explanations for many minutes while French was the second most-used
language in this hotel (the others in 2nd, 3rd and 4th position were, for
those interested [remember that we are in Toronto, not in Tokyo nor Cairo]:
Japanese [nihon-go], Spanish [español], Arabic [arabiya] [sorry if I made a
mistakes in spelling, that is what I heard, and I was as attentive as I
could). Even Spanish should have come before Japanese in North America. It
is a matter of common sense. But I was under the impression that those who
took the decision for the order in languages at this hotel were vicious.
Not very good indeed for their customer base... The guy who did that should
be reprimanded... Anyway they risk to lose me...

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