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[OT] Re: OpenOffice.org - how to install additional languages?

On Sun, 03 Apr 2011 15:08:55 -0400, Doug wrote:

> On 04/03/2011 12:20 PM, Camaleón wrote:

>> I miss an Academy of Language for English. I know Oxford's dictionary
>> is a kind of standard in this field but there should be a central
>> institution that regulates and sets the language rules and of course,
>> integrates all of the English variations.
>> In Spain we have such institution (also in France, IIRC) that tries to
>> control and normalize all of the Spanish variations.


> This is grossly off topic, but since it's here, i _must_ answer:

Don't feel obliged to do it :-)

> Thank God there is no "English Academy."  In France, their Academy has
> the force and power of law.  

Uh? I don't know of anyone who has been arrested for speaking in English 
here in Spain :-P. Of course the official language(s) of every country is 
the only one valid for legal issues and administrative tasks, that's 

> It is _illegal_ to name anything public in English.  

Are you sure about that? There should be thousand of french shops and 
companies with English or non-French names :-?

> If you have a store and call it by an English name you will be forced
> to change it to something French.  The only exception I have heard of
> is "Le Drugstore."  I don't know how they get away with it.

You can travel to Paris (by means of Google maps) and you'll find some 
shops with non-French names (English, Japanese, Italian...).

But you shouldn't mix both things: the issue you are referring to is 
mostly a political one while having an Academy that cares about your 
language is another different one. And Academy of language is about 
"standarize" the use and rules for a concrete language, to preserve the 
sanity of all, native speakers and foreigners, in the same way we follow 
a set of technical standards (ISO, IEEE, ETSI...) to make a process in a 
comprehensive manner.

What happens is, more that often, politics make a missuse of anything and 
language is often utilized as a mere weapon to achieve their goals but 
having an institution that regulates the language is not a bad thing per 
se, on the contrary, is a good thing in order to keep it alive and 
healthy, available for anyone.

> If English, either British or American, had such an academy, we would
> still be speaking the
> language of Henry VIII!  

Rest assured that the scenario you present is not what it would happen  
and I can tell you because we (Spanish) neither speak the same language 
of those who lived here in the 16th century O:-)

> And we would never have had the opportunity to
> get rid of the French
> spelling of things like "centre."

Most of the non-English languages have integrated many English voices to 
their respective dictionaries, so in Spanish you can say "chip" (to refer 
the integrated circuit) or even "modem". So don't get upset to find a 
French word in English! ;-)

> The French may hate everything English, 

I don't think so... maybe they just care and wnat to use they're own 
language and that's something to be proud about. Of course, enforcing the 
usage of a concrete language "by force" is always a bad approach.

> but those of us who speak any
> variety of English
> appreciate its variety, and we wouldn't have it any other way.

Variety is also welcomed in any Academy of language ;-)



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