The Swedish IT specialist, Richard Gatarski and his friends have visited a small restaurant in the city of Norrköping, and they noticed how the headwaiter uses a computer system of tables’ reservation. He marks on the screen the occupied tables using the felt-tip pen.
This article will first introduce you to some of the different styles used for personal names, and then some of the possible implications for handling those on the Web.
Intended audience: HTML content authors (using editors or scripting), script developers (PHP, JSP, etc.), and schema developers (DTDs, XML Schema, RelaxNG, etc.), Web project managers, and anyone who is involved in the design of forms, databases and ontology that capture people's names.
People who create web forms, databases, or ontology are often unaware how different people’s names can be in other countries. They build their forms or databases in a way that assumes too much on the part of foreign users.
This article doesn't provide all the answers – the best answer will vary according to the needs of the application, and in most cases, it may be difficult to find a 'perfect' solution. It attempts to mostly sensitize you to some of the key issues by way of an introduction. The examples and advice shown relate mostly to Web forms and databases. Many of the concepts are, however, also worth considering for ontology design, though we won't call out specific examples here.