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Common XML Locale Specification Released

November 07, 2002.

The Free Standards Group Open Internationalization Initiative, OpenI18N (formerly known as Li18nux) announced the release of the XML specification of the common XML locale data. The Common XML Locale Repository project is a joint effort among the members of the Linux Application Development Environment (aka LADE) Workgroup of the Free Standards Group. The founding members of the workgroup are IBM, Sun and The workgroup is open to additional members, both industry and community. The purpose of this project is to devise a general XML format for the exchange of culturally sensitive (locale) information for use in application and system development, and to gather, store, and make available data generated in that format.

"Interoperability has been significantly hampered by the lack of any acceptable repository for locale data," said Mark Davis, IBM chief globalization architect. "By having a single format for gathering and comparing data specific to different countries, it will make it far easier for programs and systems to provide consistent results to people all around the globe, no matter what language they speak. To support this effort, we have volunteered to host the initial work on the ICU website ("

The LADE Workgroup has finalized the XML specification of the culture information data to be shared by the application developers creating globalized software. It is also in the process of creating a set of modular standards such that the culture information repertoire can be used based on one or more components or as a whole, depending on the end users' needs. This approach allows for true scalability.

"The ability to process and present culturally sensitive information has become a significant issue with the popularity of the Web, said Helena Shih Chapman, The Free Standards Group OpenI18N LADE Workgroup leader. "Application developers can now make use of the information provided by the Common XML Locale Repository to provide the correct international behavior to the application end users."

Locale/culture information standards for Linux ensure that Linux and Linux-based software will have the infrastructure necessary to address the advanced needs of world-wide ready software, creating yet another indispensable tool for Linux. Information on the Common XML Locale Information Repository can be found at:

To learn more about LADE Workgroup and how to join, please see:

About the Free Standards Group

Supported by industry leaders, the Free Standards Group is an independent, vendor-neutral, non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating the use and acceptance of open source technologies through the development, application and promotion of standards. Headquartered in Oakland, Calif., the Free Standards Group fulfills a critical need in the open source development community to have common behavioral specifications, tools and APIs, making development across Linux distributions easier. More information on the Free Standards Group is available at

[Source: see

Prepared by Robin Cover for The XML Cover Pages archive.

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