French Nemeth

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    Fred Van Ackeren

    I'm transcribing French math and have some questions from various parts of the book. They are straight-forward questions so I've written them onto the attached .doc file.

    1. Superscript e as ordinal ending, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc. QUESTION: should these remain as superscripts or can they be dropped to the baseline as 2e, 3e, 4e, etc.?

    2. Dollar sign and commas as decimal points. The dollar sign follows the number with an intervening space; a comma is used for the decimal point.

    3. Ellipses. Normally in foreign language the (...) is unspaced from preceding text, and is the same for this transcription. However in Nemeth elipsis is spaced. Should print be followed or should the Nemeth code supervene?


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    Hi, Fred. These are very interesting questions.

    1. Do not raise the ordinal ending. I believe the Foreign Language Interim Manual tell us to insert a letter sign, but because the numerals are Nemeth, the ELI is not needed.

    2. Follow print with the location and spacing of the dollar sign. This symbol can stand alone just fine as it is. Just don't wrap the space.
    Regarding commas as decimals, the Nemeth code does address this point, calling it the "Continental decimal point." See NC §8.a. which says this: "The transcriber should be alert to the possibility that variant forms of the comma and decimal point are sometimes employed, particularly in books published outside of the United States. Although the ink print signs for the comma and decimal point differ from those used in the United States, this difference is not reflected in the braille transcription. However, a transcriber's note should be included at the beginning of the book to inform the reader of the continental usage in the ink-print edition." [4 examples]

    3. Since NC has a rule, it supersedes the FL rule. Space the ellipsis.

    Lindy Walton

    Hello--Joanna here from Foreign Language. This entire matter is somewhat simplified in the NEW BANA Foreign Language guidelines that have not yet been officially approved by BANA. However, I am able to advise regarding what they cover. In Nemeth, use all the applicable Nemeth rules and formatting. Do not be concerned with any overlapping of symbols between the French and Nemeth. Just as with Nemeth and standard English, the reader will get the context. In the non-Nemeth French portion of course, use the appropriate foreign language symbols and rules. The ellipses, for instance, will be unspaced in French and not in Nemeth. This also happens in a straight foreign language textbook, when the ellipses is unspaced in the foreign language and spaced in English. Same thing. Only here we have Nemeth instead of non-Nemeth English.


    Lindy Walton

    Thank you for the clarification, Joanna. It makes all kinds of sense.

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