Improving genitive. Or not.... (part 1)

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2011/10/14 07:01 -04:00, original URI:

Genitive month name usage is a feature that has been in Windows for a while.

But the original feature hasn't completely done the trick. I mean, in the long run.

Put simply, we simply didn't "grow" the feature the way we were growing other areas when new locales challenged our older perceptions.

Like we had a maximum documented size for a field in a locale but then added a new locale that needs a bigger value?

That has happened many times.

But then when you consider genitive date support, what about bugs like the one in Latvian. Genitive. Oops, specifically?

Now in looking at the earlier versions of Windows when the whole "genitive months" feature was added, it appears that the first versions of it worked properly.

But over time we ended up with new locales, and in some cases those locales commonly used formats that were harder to detect

Ideally the algorithm would be tweaked (this was my #1 in that earlier blog).

But as we get further and further out no one reports the bugs, we lose track of things. And it is easy to have people give us the two different data items -- the genitive month names and the various formats, and not pay as much attention to the interaction between them....

As a feature I don't expect our architectural support to get worse, but I worry that we don't invest enough to keep up with new issues in the existing support. Like this bug....

I have a few other issues I'm curious and/or concerned about here, which I'll cover in future parts. Stay tuned!

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referenced by

2012/01/05 Improving genitive. Or not.... (part 5): You can't make it sexier by giving it a Latin twist...

2011/10/28 Improving genitive. Or not.... (part 4): On [not] finding the smoking gun

2011/10/27 Improving genitive. Or not.... (part 3): The hazards of "off label" usage

2011/10/26 Improving genitive. Or not.... (part 2): Explaining the point of Part 1

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