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Subject: Re: [docbook] On family/given/first/last names

Geraint North wrote:

>> Geraint North wrote:
>>> Out of interest, what do people use the 
>>> firstname/surname/lastname/givenname distinction for?  In Docbook, 
>>> its main use is clearly to identify document authors visually on the 
>>> page.
>> Contributors? A group of authors?
> Sure, but that's still basically the same thing - document authors. 

May be for your usage.
It wasn't for mine? I wrote 95% of a document and received
(much appreciated) contributions from two others.
So no, contributors, not authors in my semantics?

> seems to me that within DocBook, the uses for names are much more 
> constrained than a general-purpose ontology for a 'person' would need to 
> be - that's what I was trying to understand.

I guess that's just it. GP doesn't seem to cut it when you get
really interested in names; either because you're hitting
the XYZ academic circles, or you're just that bit less 'loose'
than GP.

The human side to this is that you're dealing with people here.
And there's nowt so queer as folk.

>>>  Given the variation in naming schemes internationally, I'd be
>>> very unlikely to perform any sort of search restricted to givenname 
>>> or familyname, so what else could it be used for?
>> I like the suggestion on James page (one of the respondents) to enable
>> 'search term' so that I could search on what the person wants rather
>> than what a non-local might use?
> The thing is, if I'm searching for a document author, I don't want to 
> miss a result because I'm unfamiliar with the particular local 
> characteristics of the person's name - the only sensible thing to me 
> would seem to be for the XML to contain every component of their name, 
> and for me to search on all of them.

But that's what the JC page elaborates?
What you're searching on is i18N dependent?
What the states might consider 'normal' to search on is
way out different for Thailand or Burma.

So yes, mark up each name component (and the 'linking'
items! That was very subtle, a-b is different from a b)
and then provide the metadata for that name, as used
in that locale. <xname role='searchFirst'>.... etc

This picks up the 'usage' idea?
This man is known as Norm.
His primary search 'name' is Walsh.
His first name is 'Norman' etc.

>>> Perhaps the correct distinction is to list name components in 
>>> printing-order, with semantic markup to identify the sort order?
>> Which might be your or my interpretation? If it's known (not always
>> the case I guess) then surely better to use that person (or their
>> locale specific usage if known) for search?
> And Markus's comment:
>> Naming conventions are a pet peeve for everyone involved in generating 
>> citations and bibliographies for scholarly publications. Scientific 
>> journals and publishers have fairly strict rules how to display names 
>> of authors and editors.

And I bet they (the journals) are all different!
Even in the 'narrow' world of medics! True Markus?

  In order to do that, you need to know the
>> function of each part of the name. Assume the journal wants the names 
>> displayed as "Last, First M.". A guy named Luis Lopez Penabad would 
>> obviously be displayed as "Penabad, Luis L." although this is all 
>> wrong. He is Spanish, has one firstname (Luis) and two lastnames 
>> (Lopez Penabad), one from each of his parents. The correct display 
>> form is therefore "Lopez Penabad, Luis". The 
>> firstname/surname/lastname/givenname elements somewhat help to get 
>> this right, although you still face lots of problems with non-Western 
>> names, and even with some standard US names. E.g. if a person goes by 
>> his second "firstname", like L. Clinton Webb, the current DocBook 
>> markup has a hard time to catch this

Which points (me) to a need for a 'usage' class of metadata?

which is likely usage oriented?

> If publishers do have strict guidelines in this regard, it would be 
> interesting to know _why_ they have these guidelines - I suspect that 
> they are artefacts from a time when search would be performed on the 
> printed document itself, which (as Markus showed in his example) has 
> clear disadvantages.

After you in terms of getting them to change?
King Canute is probably a good analogy!
Stopping the tide might be easier though.

> Obviously an impossible proposal, but if _I_ were King of the 
> International Author Naming Committee, there seem to be only two things 
> of interest:
> - How each author would like their name displayed

But display is the 'person' issue?
What of the 'journal' issue
and the other issues (I like to be known as... etc)

> - An unordered set of all the components of their name (including 
> variants), for search purposes.
> e.g.
> <author>
>   <displayas>L. Ron Hubbard</displayas>
>   <namecomponent>Lafayette<namecomponent>
>   <namecomponent>Ron<namecomponent>
>   <namecomponent>Ronald<namecomponent>
>   <namecomponent>Hubbard<namecomponent>
> </author>

Which misses Markus and his darned journals,
me and my 'I like to be called' stuff.

It's the metadata about namecomponents that we
are missing, to keep Markus.. sorry, his journal
publishers and their quill pens, happy?

I think... But I've never suffered from
insufferable journal publishers.


Dave Pawson

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