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Handbook of Terminology Management: Volume 1: Basic Aspects of Terminology Management [1 ed.]
 9789027285577, 9789027221544

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Basic Aspects of Terminology Management Compiled by

SUE ELLEN WRIGHT Kent State University

GERHARD BUDIN University of Vienna


The paper used in this publication meets the minimum requirements of American National Standard for Information Sciences — Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials, ANSI Z39.48-1984.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Handbook of terminology management / compiled by Sue Ellen Wright, Gerhard Budin. p. cm. Contents: v. 1. Basic aspects of terminology management. 1. Technology-Terminology-Handbooks, manuals, etc. I. Wright, Sue Ellen, 1943- . II. Budin, Gerhard. T11.H27 1997 401\4-dc21 97-7100 ISBN 90 272 2154 5 (Eur.) / 1-55619-508-7 (US) (Vol. 1; alk. paper) CIP ISBN 90 272 2149 9 (Eur.) / 1-55619-502-8 (US) (Set; alk. paper) © Copyright 1997 - John Benjamins B.V. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form, by print, photoprint, microfilm, or any other means, without written permission from the publisher. John Benjamins Publishing Company • P.O.Box 75577 • 1070 AN Amsterdam • The Netherlands John Benjamins North America • P.O.Box 27519 • Philadelphia PA 19118-0519 • USA




Sue Ellen Wright and Gerhard Budin




Sue Ellen Wright 1.2


1.2.1 1.2.2


Term Formation Juan C. Sager Graphic and Other Semiotic Forms of Knowledge Representation in Terminology Management Christian Galinski and Heribert Picht

25 42


1.3.1 1.3.2 1.3.3 1.4


Terminological Definitions Bruno de Bessé Frames and the Display of Definitions Richard A. Strehlow Terms and Contexts Robert Dubuc and Andy Lauriston

63 75 80


1.4.1 1.4.2 1.4.3 1.4.4

Representation of Concept Systems Sue Ellen Wright Systematic Concept Analysis within a Knowledge-Based Approach to Terminology Ingrid Meyer, Karen Eck, and Douglas Skuce Multifaceted/Multidimensional Concept Systems Kyo Kageura Multidimensional Classification of Concepts and Terms Lynne Bowker

89 98 119 133





2.1.1 2.1.2 2.1.3

2.1.4 2.2

Terminology Management for Technical Translation Sue Ellen Wright and Leland D. Wright Medical Terminology Management Clove Lynch The Terms and Arts of Patentese: Wolves in Sheep's Clothing Veronica Lawson Descriptive Terminology in the Social Sciences Fred W. Riggs, Matti Mälkiä, and Gerhard Budin . . .

147 160

171 184


2.2.1 2.2.2




Terminology Standardization: Management Strategies Sue Ellen Wright ISO 10241: Preparation and Layout of Terminology Standards Richard A. Strehlow Terminology Management in International Standardization ISO 472: Plastics — Vocabulary Jean Schrade Do's and Don'ts of Terminology Management Catherine Bowman, Diane Michaud, and Heidi Suonuuti Basic Resources for Assigning Chemical Names within the Field of Chemical Nomenclature Joy E. Merritt and Byron J. Bossenbroek








Gerhard Budin and Sue Ellen Wright 3.2

vi, 245


John Humbley






Christian Galinski and Sue Ellen Wright




Heribert Picht and Carmen Acuna Partal


INFORMATION BOXES Note: The authors of the Information Boxes are Sue Ellen Wright and Gerhard Budin, with the exception of Infobox 18, which is by Clove Lynch. Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox Infobox

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19

Terminology Collections Terminology Activities Lexicography and Terminology Descriptive and Prescriptive Terminology Special Language Headwords Part of Speech (Word Class) Abbreviated Forms of Terms Classification and Documentary Languages Conceptual Relations Intension and Extension Standard Definitions Hypertext Entailed Terms Product Media Language Identifiers Source Identifiers Medical Etymology Doctoral Level Graduate Study

325 327 328 329 330 330 331 332 334 337 339 340 341 342 343 344 345 346 347




349 355




359 360 365


Sue Ellen Wright and Gerhard Budin 6 INFORMATION MANAGEMENT 6.1


Corentin Roulin 6.2


Richard Strehlow 6.3




Gerhard Budin, Tanguy Wettengel, and Sue Ellen Wright 7.2


7.2.1 7.2.2 7.2.3



Terminology as an Organizational Principle in CIM Environments Sue Ellen Wright Terminology-based Knowledge Engineering in Enterprises B. Düsterbeck and W. Hesser Terminology for Quality Management / Quality Management for Terminology Sue Ellen Wright Project-Integrated Terminology Management for Technical Writing and Translation Gertrude .G. Champe Software Terminology and Localisation Licia Corbolante





8 C O M P U T E R A P P L I C A T I O N S FOR T E R M I N O L O G Y 8.1



8.1.2 8.1.3 8.1.4 8.1.5 8.2



8.2.2 8.2.3


Criteria for Evaluating Terminology Database Management Programs Klaus-Dirk Schmitz Data Categories for Terminology Management Sue Ellen Wright Terminology Management Software and Entry Structures Felix Mayer User-Specific Terminological Data Retrieval Blaise Nkwenti-Azeh Terminology Interchange Alan K. Melby and Sue Ellen Wright The Preparation of Multi-Volume Illustrated Terminological Dictionaries Jocelyne Le Néal Practical Considerations for a Term Bank Helen Hutcheson Building In-House Terminology Databases for High-Quality Technical Translations Mary Neff


Muriel Vasconcellos 8.4




8.4.3 8.4.4 8.4.5

The Analysis of Text Corpora for the Creation of Advanced Terminology Databases Khurshid Ahmad Terminology Compilation: Consequences and Aspects of Automation Juan C. Sager Terminological Aspects of Text Production Gregory M. Shreve Collocations in Sub-Language Texts Ulrich Heid The Role of Terminology Management in Artificial Intelligence and Knowledge-Based Systems Khurshid Ahmad





Gerhard Budin and Sue Ellen Wright INFORMATION BOXES Infobox 20 Standard Generalized Markup Language Infobox 21 ISO 9000: Quality Management Standards APPENDICES I






Language Codes Country Codes Script Codes IV


Internet Addresses Organizations and Networks Universities with Terminology Programs Terminology and Thesaurus Management Systems Publicly Accessible Terminology Databases V


Monographs and Journals Standards


List of Illustrations Chapter 1.2.2 Graphic Representation Figure 1 Microphone (Basic Symbol) Figure 2 Public Information Symbols: Telephone + Location Figure 3a Photo Figure 3b Line Drawing Figure 4a The Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Paris Figure 4b Architectural Plan of Notre-Dame, Paris Figure 4c Map Symbols Figure 5 Electrical Schematic Figure 6a General Door Elements Figure 6b Door at Clivedon, Germantown, Pennsylvania Figure 7 Tool Drawing Figure 8 Block Diagrams Figure 9 Table for Calculating Atmospheric Pressure Figure 10 Graphs with Multiple Curves Figure 11 International Iconic Representation for Textile Care Figure 12 Illustrative Management Flow Chart Figure 13 Pie Charts Figure 14 Dynamic Elements Figure 15 Varied Forms of Representation for the Same Concept System Figure 16 Combined Forms Figure 17 Industrial Drawing Figure 18 Verbal and Visual Nonverbal Forms of Concept Representation

46 47 47 47 49 49 49 49 50 50 50 51 52 52 52 53 54 54 56 57 59 60

Chapter 1.3.2 Frames and Display of Definitions Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure

1 2 3 4 5

The Basic Structure of a Terminological Frame Frame Representation of the Definition of "Tiger" Frame Representation of the Definition of "Lion" Frame Representation of the Definition of "Leopard" . . . . Table of Markers and Properties

Chapter 1.3.1 Representation of Concept Systems Figure 1 Tree Diagram for Generic Concept System Figure 2 Bracket Diagram for a Partitive Concept System Figure 3 Sequential Concept System Figure 4 Functional Sequence (Flow Chart)

76 77 78 78 79

89 90 91 92



Figure 5 Figure 6

Associative Concept System, Materials Multidimensional Modelling

93 95

Figure 7

"Monodimensional" Database Representation


Chapter 1.4.2 Systematic Concept Analysis Table 1 Characteristics of CD-ROM: Name and Value 102 Table 2 Inheritance, Specialization, and the Addition of Values for Characteristics in a Generic-Specific Hierarchy 105 Figure 1 Tree Diagram from the CODE System 106 Figure 2 CODE Graphical Browser Showing Concepts with GenericSpecific (S), Meronymic (Part), and Non-hierarchical (Device) Links 110 Figure 3 Graph showing All Non-Generic-Specific Relations between the Concept CD-ROM and other Concepts in the Knowledge Base 111 Figure 4 CODE Textual Browser Containing a Hierarchical List of Concepts with Two Collapsed Subtrees 112 Figure 5 Code Window with Concepts Browser, Characteristics Browser, and Facets Browser 113 Figure 6 CCM for CD-Audio 114 Figure 7 Code Window with Graphical Concepts Browser and Textual Characteristics Browser 115 Chapter 1.4.3 Multidimensional Concept Systems Figure 1 Figure 2 Table 1 Table 2 Table 3 Table


A Subspace within a Static Conceptual Organization 121 A Classificatory Organization for Computer 123 Basic Facts and Sample Values for Entity Concepts 125 A Sketch of a Generic/Specific Organization for Entity Concepts 127 A Sketch of a Generic/Specific Organization for Activity Concepts 128 Major Types of Conceptual Specifications 131

Chapter 1.4.4 Multidimensional Classification Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4

Multiple Viewpoints of the Concept VEHICLE Basic Multidimensional View of the Concept VEHICLE . . . . Complex Multidimensional View of the Concept VEHICLE . . False Multidimensionality and the Corrected System

134 135 136 141

HANDBOOK OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT Chapter 2.1.1 Technical Translation Figure 1 Fragmented Concept Fields Figure 2 Work Sequences for Systematic and Ad Hoc Terminology Management Chapter 2.1.2 Medical Terminology Figure 1 Sample Template, Full Term Entry Figure 2 Full Term Entry Chapter 2.1.4 Descriptive Terminology Figure 1 Simplified Example of the Concept Node for Ethnic Organization Figure 2 A Selection of Contexts Quoted in the Concept Node for 'Ethnic Organization' Figure 3 A Source Node for Porter 1975 Figure 4 A Partial Presentation of a Bibliographic Node Figure 5 The Main Classification Scheme Used in the Ethnicity Glossary Figure 6 Partial Presentation of the Second Level of the Classification Scheme Used in the Ethnicity Glossary Figure 7 Partial Presentation of the Bottom Level of the Classification Scheme Used in the Ethnicity Glossary


149 150

166 168

188 190 191 191 193 193 194

Chapter 2.2.5 Chemical Nomenclature Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9

Zidovudine 220 Structures of Ethylene glycol, Propylene glycol and Diethylene glycol 221 Examples of Substitutive, Radicofunctional, and Skeletal Replacement Names 225 Example of a Source-Based Name and a Structure-Based Name of a Polymer 228 Illustrative Key for the SAS Ring Systems Handbook (RSH) . 231 Examples of Uninverted Names and Inverted CAS Index Names 232 Functional Suffix Groups 235 Illustrative List of Stems Used for INN (WHO) 237 Illustrated Entry in the USAN Dictionary 238



Chapter 3.1 Multilingualism in Terminology Management Figure 1 Graphic Representation of the Essential Aspects of User Needs with Respect to Character Set Technology


Chapter 3.2 Language Planning Figure


Article (Term Entry) Layout


The Handbook of Terminology Management Introduction THE NATURE OF A HANDBOOK

In calling this book a Handbook, the compilers have patterned it after handbooks treating, for instance, topics in engineering and the social sciences. As such, it is designed to be a compendium of information designed to meet the everyday needs of professionals dealing with terminological problems in a wide variety of fields: • technical translation • technical communication • standardization • information brokering and information management • management of professional and scientific discourse in monolingual, multilin­ gual, and multicultural environments • language planning • research in various fields, such as linguistics (including corpus and cognitive linguistics), information science, translation studies, information systems and software design for terminology management, and last but not least, terminol­ ogy studies The text is intended to be a permanent companion of the working terminologist, a resource that is continuously at hand, designed to provide an ever-ready reservoir of useful basic information on the prevalent topics of concern to a broad range of users. TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT

In order to adequately address all the issues encompassed by the variety and diversity of the applications listed above, the editors have searched for a term that would cover the entire range of activities in the field of terminology, highly cog­ nizant of the battles that have scarred the terminological landscape in defense of one or another favored formulation. Without launching an extended theoretical discussion, we define terminology management for the purpose of this book as: any deliberate manipulation of terminological information



This very general concept covers: • practical terminology management as it has been carried out by countless en­ gineers, biologists, chemists, and social scientists over centuries in order to fill their constant need for precise and unambiguous language in the form of both the concepts they create and with which they think, as well as the corres­ ponding terms they use to communicate with each other • the systematic recording of such information (more often than not on a multi­ lingual level) and its presentation as dictionaries, terminology collections, and terminology databases • the ad hoc retrieval of such information for the purposes of translation and interpreting, for text production as a function of technical communication, and for information management There are several reasons for having selected the term terminology management. First of all, we consider this to be the only candidate term that fully en­ compasses the wide range of activities mentioned above and listed in the Table of Contents. Furthermore, on the negative side of the decision process, terms such as terminography and terminology work are too narrow or lack universal acceptance, particularly among native and habitual speakers of English. On the positive side, terminology management constitutes a parallel concept to information management, and both provide vital tools in the environment of Total Quality Management, which has become the fundamental focus for func­ tional and organizational activity, not only in manufacturing, but in document production, computer applications, and the service industries as well. This affin­ ity does not, however, simply reflect an effort on our part to "jump on the ter­ minological bandwagon" by coining a term that coordinates with the latest cor­ porate buzzwords. The emphasis on management underscored in these desig­ nations also reflects the efforts of manufacturers as well as terminology, docu­ mentation, and information specialists to come to terms with the contemporary information explosion, that is, to manage and control ever-increasing volumes of information. In quality management, for instance, much of what was once undefined chance or accident in manufacturing systems is now manifested as quantifiable data that can be manipulated to ensure control capability with respect to production results. These data constitute information, but the information does not just flow through database management systems like water in a pipe. It is carried by dis­ crete, identifiable, retrievable vehicles called data elements. These data elements are rendered identifiable in that they have names, and the naming of data ele­ ments in information systems is an essentially terminological act. In fact, the harmonization of data element names and data structures is one of the most



critical challenges facing information specialists today in their effort to create global systems that can "talk to each other" across hardware and software bar­ riers. Consequently, the link between terminology management, information man­ agement, and quality management is one of intimate interdependence. A POLYTHEORETTCAL, POLYMETHODOLOGICAL APPROACH

Although terminology activity tends to be international in scope, different trends and methodologies have evolved in different parts of the world. As dedicated internationalists, the editors are disinclined to enumerate so-called "schools" of terminology because such enumerations tend to perpetuate theoretical, linguistic, and cultural biases that contribute to divisive positions. Our approach to the problem has been consistently holistic, reflecting our desire to cull the best of the best from all quarters, drawing on experts in a variety of subfields and geo­ graphical areas. We have attempted to exercise our prerogatives as editors insofar as the imposition of a high quality standard is concerned. In many cases, we have nevertheless avoided imposing our views on authors who may on occasion present controversial ideas or use disputed terminology. This concern manifests itself particularly with regard to terminological variants. One scholar's canonical form is another's terminological "barbarism". We have tried to limit our role as "terminology police" in imposing any one school of thought or canonizing any given set of terminological usage. It is our contention that the variants that pre­ vail in the literature of the field should be reflected—and where necessaryelucidated wherever they naturally occur in this book. Many of the Information Boxes explained in the "How to Use This Book" section discuss usage options. The topics treated in the Information Boxes are addressed separately there be­ cause they require clarification with respect to several articles. We are very aware of the fact that the book is written in English. Needless to say, we both publish in English and we know that our book will reach its broadest possible audience in English. Many of the articles included here are relatively language neutral, but others (Term Formation, Patent Terminology, or many of the usage notes included in the Information Boxes) exhibit varying degrees of language specificity. On the one hand, we hope that the very fact that our readers do indeed read English will make the more language-specific aspects of the book interesting. On the other hand, we know that the rules for term formation in English vary significantly from those for term formation in other languages. Nevertheless, we do not see these differences as a reason not to discuss this topic. Of course, addressing such a subject for all languages would be virtually impossible—even if an author could step forward to do that, the



result would be huge, and probably unwieldy as well. What we hope is that the articles we include will be interesting and informative enough that our readers will be able to extrapolate meaningful analogies that will be useful to them in preparing similar guidelines for their own linguistic environments. T H E SCOPE OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT

The Organization of this Handbook Because of the extensive topic range treated in this Handbook, it has proven necessary to publish the book in two volumes. Volume I addresses the classic issues of terminology management, along with overriding practical and external factors, such as terminology training and copyright issues. Volume II treats new­ er trends in terminology management, including the relationship of terminology to monolingual technical writing and the full range of computer applications, as well as information on once novel delivery media for terminological products such as CD-ROM resources and the availability of information on the World Wide Web. VOLUME I: BASIC ASPECTS OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT

Fundamental Principles The initial segment of Volume I addresses basic concerns involved in the docu­ mentation of terminology. Term Selection (Wright) and Term Formation (Sager) together provide insight into the most salient of all terminological activities: the identification and creation of terms used or to be used in a discipline and to be documented in terminology management projects. The chapter on Graphic Representation (Galinski and Picht) supports the thesis that non-verbal means of representation occur in addition to the verbal forms that comprise the primary substance of most terminology collections, and that these forms of representation are proliferating in modern information environments. Under the heading of Concept Description, de Bessé's article on Definitions stresses the importance of complete terminological definitions, as opposed to some of the forms of so-called definitions used in other resources. Dubuc and Lauriston underscore the value of using Contexts to document the relationship of terms to concepts, the meaning of terms, and the way that they function in texts. Beginning with a basic explanation of Concept System representation (Wright), the discussion moves on to explore Knowledge-Based systematic approaches to concept analysis (Eck, Meyer, and Skuce). Chapters treating the Multifaceted and Multidimensional aspects of concept classification (Kageura and Bowker) explore



efforts to overcome concentration on overly simplistic, two-dimensional systems for representing concept relations. Types of Terminology Management The second major section of the book addresses the many different applications involved in terminology management. The treatment of Descriptive Terminology management explores primarily non-normative terminological activities involving Technical Translation (Wright and Wright), Medical Science (Lynch), Patent Language (Lawson), and the Social Sciences (Riggs, Mälkiä, and Budin). These activities primarily involve docu­ mentation on the part of both experts and quasi-specialists (well-versed, non­ expert terminologists) who prepare terminology products and online resources for use by both subject-field experts and lay practitioners such as translators, techni­ cal writers, and students. The articles pertaining to Prescriptive Terminology management, on the other hand, examine practices and methodologies that have evolved in the arena of normative terminology (Schrade, Wright, Strehlow, and Suonuuti), primarily within the framework of national and international standardization, such as the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and professional societies, such as the International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC). Merritt's contribution outlines resources for those working in the field of chemistry and provides a model for the development of highly structured nomenclatures. Language Policy Multilingualism in Terminology Management (Budin and Wright) examines lan­ guage policy as applied to countries and regions that must contend with multiple official and unofficial languages and even with the use of multiple scripts, which generates the need to cope with problems involving transliteration and transcrip­ tion. It also addresses situations involving languages that are facing the challenge of developing technical terminologies in an orderly fashion in order to combat a confusing proliferation of synonyms and potentially ambiguous forms. Language and Terminology Planning (Humbley) in the francophone environment documents both the history and the current development of French efforts in language plan­ ning. Intellectual Property Rights Copyright and Terminology (Galinski and Wright) outlines the extent to which copyright issues affect terminology collections. In lieu of clear cut protection within the framework of national and international copyright conventions, the



authors support the use of a Guide to Terminology Agreements as a useful tool for establishing safe and equitable contractual relationships among individuals and entities sharing and exchanging terminological data. Such agreements are espe­ cially valuable in flexible electronic environments where the merging and reuse of data gives rise to questions with respect to authorship and exploitation that as yet remain unclear within the framework of emerging trends in copyright protection. Terminology Training The chapter on Terminology Training (Picht and Acuna) outlines the types of terminology training that are being practiced in the world today and proposes modular components that make up the subject matter of courses presented in different venues and for different intentional aims. Backmatter The Information Boxes included in the backmatter of this volume address individual global issues that in many cases are referenced by several articles throughout the book. They address questions of terminological usage, differences of opinion that exist among various individuals and groups of terminologists, and items of information that frequently are taken for granted by one or more authors, but which may unfamiliar to some readers. Annex I provides a brief annotated list of terminology manuals treated from the perspective of their utility as learning tools. The list of abbreviations that follows (Annex II) is included for reader convenience as a supplement to the explanation of full forms in the individual articles. More detailed selected bibliography, however, will appear in Volume II. VOLUME II: APPLICATIONS-ORIENTED TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT

Information Management Under this rubric, a series of articles outlines the role of terminology with respect to Computer-Assisted Thesaurus Management (Roulin), as well as Indexing and Information Retrieval (Strehlow). Commercial and Industrial Applications Terminology in Technical Writing (Budin, Wettengel, and Wright) addresses the contribution that terminology management can make to the activity of the technical communicator.



Under the heading of Industrial Management, Computer Integrated Manufacturing (Wright), Knowledge Engineering in Enterprises (Material Resources Planning) (Düsterbeck and Hesser), Quality Management (Wright), treat areas of activity where terminology management has either only been recently recognized or where it has taken on a new orientation in modern industry. Software Localisation (Corbolante) outlines procedures for guaranteeing terminological appropri­ ateness in the complex activity of software adaptation to individual market de­ mands within the worldwide computer software trade. Computer Applications for Terminology The articles under the heading of Database Management Methods supply informa­ tion on selecting Terminology Database Management Programs (Schmitz), on determining the Data Categories desirable for their particular terminology database implementation (Wright), and on the appropriate Entry Structures to adopt to meet their needs (Mayer). The article on User-Specific Data Retrieval (Nkwenti-Azeh) presents the prospect of multi-purpose, user-customizable termin­ ology database management systems, and the Terminology Interchange (Melby and Wright) orients the reader to efforts to implement a universal terminology entry format designed to facilitate the importation and exportation of terminologi­ cal data using Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML). The Applications and Products section explores actual working environments within which terminology products such as Illustrated Dictionaries (Le Néal) and Term Bank (Hutcheson) resources have been created or established. This section also treats the creation of a highly complex support system for Translation-oriented Terminology Management within a major corporate environment (Neff). These topics lead naturally into the consideration of the role that terminology plays in Machine Translation and the special requirements needed to fully inte­ grate terminological information into machine translation systems (Vasconcellos). Corpus-related Applications addresses the question of automatic terminology generation in articles on the Analysis of Text Corpora for the Creation of Terminology Databases (Ahmad) and Terminology Compilation (Sager). The special function of terminology in the Text Production process (Shreve), as well as the role of Collocations in Sub-language Texts (Heid), underscore the relationship of terminological issues to concerns for discourse and texuality. The Role ofTerminology in Artificial Intelligence and Knowledge-based Systems (Ahmad) provides a structural overview of artificial intelligence and expert systems in light of the importance of terminology in creating these systems. In Terminology Management Resources on the Internet Budin and Wright do­ cument the growing wealth of information accessible at sites on the World Wide Web (WWW) or available for downloading from the Internet using File Transfer



Protocol (FTP). Actual addresses relevant to terminology management are included in Appendix IV. Backmatter The Information Boxes included in Volume II serve a similar function to those in Volume I and pertain specifically to the issues addressed in the second Vol­ ume. In addition to the List of Abbreviations Used in This Volume, Volume II contains a number of other Appendices designed to facilitate the work of the practicing terminologist. The Checklist for Project Planning in Terminology Management provides valuable organizational procedures. Coding Systems for Terminology Management facilitates access to the various codes used in terminology management in one convenient resource. Although the editors are well aware of the volatility of the information contained in Appendix IV, Terminology Management Resources, the hope is that the immediate utility of this information will outweigh any built-in obsolescence. Efforts will be made to devise ways to maintain the currency of this information, either in future publi­ cations or through postings to the World Wide Web. An effort has been made to keep bibliographical references in the main body of the text as concise as possible in order to increase reader-friendliness in a handbook environment, which differs in some respects from the citation-laden style of many scholarly writings. The Selected General Bibliography provides a broader sampling of critical works in the field that are relevant to the topics treated in the main body of the text, together with general annotations on the ap­ plicability of these materials. ORGANIZATIONAL PHILOSOPHY AND INFORMATION RETRIEVAL MECHANISMS

The topics treated in this book have been chosen with an eye to providing comprehensive coverage of each aspect of terminology management. They do not merely represent yet another collection of potentially unrelated or uncoordinated articles selected at random by their authors for presentation within a particular symposium or series collection. These subjects were carefully assigned to the in­ dividual authors, based on the assumption that they have distinguished themselves because of their work in specific subfields of the discipline. The articles have been fine-tuned, and a rich network of cross-references have been integrated into the text to facilitate hypertext-like movement within the book as a whole. These mechanisms are more clearly explained in the following section.




Although the serious or zealous reader is cordially invited to read the book from cover to cover, it is not intended to present a one-time reading experience, but rather to be a permanent reference work that users will return to again and again, both to reconfirm prior knowledge and to familiarize themselves with unfamiliar areas of the field. To this end, we have provided the following devices designed for rapid navigation through the text in search of specific information: •

Quick-search keywords Marginal references that highlight topic concepts in the individual articles

SEE Term Selection 1.1:13 cross-reference to other articles in this volume. Articles are indicated by the chapter short name and number, followed by a colon and a page reference. For instance, in the above example, Term Selection is the title of a chapter, 7.7.7 the number of that chapter, and ? the page on which the chapter begins. In cases where the entire article is related to a given point in the text, the page reference is for the first page of the article. Where a specific passage in a chapter is referenced, the page number may reflect the page where the related topic is discussed. INF

Classification 1NFB 9:334 INF boxes act as pointers that guide the reader to Information Boxes treating basic concepts that are relevant to more than one of the chapters in the book. Infoboxes are indicated by a short name and number, followed by a colon and a page reference. In the example, Classification is the short name for Infobox 9: Classification and Other Documentary Languages, which begins on page 334. •

A detailed, structured subject index designed to allow easy access to topics discussed in the articles, together with an authors' index for easy reference to authors cited in the book



In addition to our many authors, we wish to acknowledge the contributions of our assistants, Isabelle Musyl Cannas, Anke Förster, Yuthika Prabhu, and Elisabeth Skorianz, as well as the work of our indexer, Michelle Foss. Thanks also go to our careful first readers, Bertie Kaal, Leiand D. Wright, Jr., and Juan C. Sager, as well as to Klaus-Dirk Schmitz for one final critical reading. Special thanks go also to Aban Budin and Leiand D. Wright for feeding us well and put­ ting up with the chaos generated by such a massive project. Sue Ellen Wight Kent, Ohio, USA April, 1996

Gerhard Budin Vienna, Austria

1 Fundamental Principles of Terminology Management

Section 1.1 Term Selection: The Initial Phase of Terminology Management SUE ELLEN WRIGHT 1


Terminology management as treated in this handbook covers ac­ tivities ranging from the descriptive terminology activity prac­ ticed in the social sciences to strict prescriptive methodologies used for standardization purposes and government regulation. The frequently descriptive but sometimes prescriptive work done by or for translators and technical writers falls somewhere in between these extremes. Terminologists must select the terms that will be documented in their terminology collections based on the objectives and requirements defined for their working environment. This chapter treats criteria for selecting termino­ logical units for inclusion in different kinds of collections. 2

INF Descriptive & Prescriptive Terminology INFB 4:329 Special Language INFB 5:330


General language texts are produced when words are selected meaningfully from everyday language and combined logically to form discourse. General language lexicographic dictionaries document the global range of words occurring throughout the linguistic community. Terminology management, on the other hand, concerns itself primarily with terms, i.e., the words that are assigned to concepts used in the special languages that occur in subject-field or domain-related texts. The relationship between concepts and terms is treated in great detail in the theoretical literature (Picht-Draskau 1985:93ff; Felber-Budin: 1989:119ff; Arntz-Picht 1989:37ff.; Sager 1990:19ff). Termino­ logical units that are extracted from these special language texts generally represent a limited number of parts of speech: nouns, verbs, and sometimes adjectives and adverbs, as well as phra­ seological material. These items are combined with a matrix of essentially general language connective material to produce

INF Lexicography vs. Terminology INFB 3:328 Part of Speech INFB 7:331



coherent, subject-specific discourse. Identifying and selecting these terms is both the first step and an ongoing concern in the creation of terminological resources. 3


Newcomers to terminology management frequently err by as­ suming that only single-word, or at most compound terms, can be documented in terminology collections. Terminologists ac­ tually record a range of different kinds of terminological units during terminology management (see Hohnhold 1990:30-38). 3.1

Single-Word and Multiword Terms

Terms occur as single words, such as machine (en), Maschine (de), or machine (fr) and as compound and multiword terms, such as sewing machine (en), Nahmaschine (de), or machine à coudre (fr). The choice of a either single-word or a multiword term depends on language-specific conventions. In some cases, a single word exists in one language, where another requires a multiword term: molinillo (es), chocolate frother (en). To form compound and complex terms, some languages (such as Ger­ manic and Slavic languages) combine word elements in abstract sequences, whereas others (e.g., Romance languages) use expli­ cit, logical linking elements (prepositions) to form multiword structures. Any of these items can be viewed as a terminolo­ gical unit and can be included in a terminological entry. Front-wheel-drive vehicle is an example of a multiword term in which each component is itself a single-word term. Although each separate word can be defined in its own right, the multi­ word term designates one concept that potentially represents a greater whole than the sum of its constituent parts. In such cases, both the individual terms and the multiword term must be treated as independent conceptual units. Most importantly, commonly used combinations need to be documented so that users can ascertain which combined forms used in a field have established themselves as having clearly defined meanings. Although nominal multiword terms are sometimes called "noun phrases", many terminologists prefer to reserve the word "phrase" for strings that refer to multiple concepts. In some languages (German and Russian, for instance), multiword terms

INF Term Formation 1.2.1:25 [ INF I Language Identifiers INFB 16:344

noun phrases



are commonly written as single words. In English, only widely used terms are treated this way (online, database, but not data bank). This distinction reflects orthographic convention more than it does morphological differences between the languages. 3.2

Set Phrases

Beyond the multiword term, terminologists also find phraseo­ logical units that must be documented in their work. Set phrases, such as night and day (de: Tag und Nacht) and black and white (es: blanco y negro) are documented because their equivalents in other languages will not necessarily be direct lit­ eral translations (e.g., de: bevollmâchtigen, = en: nominate, constitute, and appoint as attorney-in-fact ...). Some combinations of several nouns constitute free-formed combinations, such as cars and trucks. They are not considered to be multiword terms or even set phrases. Other formulations, such as gold and foreign currency reserves, stocks and bonds or business and industry occur so frequently together that they may be construed as truly multiword terms or set phrases. Some­ times it is not easy to decide whether this kind of combination is a discrete term. One way to tell is to determine whether the combination in question corresponds to an obvious single or multiword term in another language. As in the bevollmächtigen example shown in the previous paragraph, a multiword term representing a single concept in one language may be differ­ entiated to become a complex set phrase in another language. 3.3

set phrases

free-formed combinations


Various writers in the field of linguistics call many different kinds of multiword strings collocations, although purists argue that this term should be reserved for so-called combinatory phraseological units (Benson, Benson, and Ilson 1986). Combi­ natory forms are made up of words that frequently co-occur (i.e., "co-locate"), even if they don't always follow each other directly in sentences. In the example file a patent, although the verb file is quasi-obligatory for expressing the initial registra­ tion of or application for a patent, it does not necessarily have to occur immediately adjacent to the word patent. The words could even appear in separate paragraphs, but the usage pattern




would still be obligatory. This principle of potential dislocation within the stream of discourse constitutes the essential property of combinatory forms, hence of "co-location". Terms—even long noun-adjective strings—designate individ­ ual concepts, whereas technical collocations identify situations or propositions that are for the most part made up of several mutually related concepts. The purpose of both elements is the same: to firmly delineate the conceptual and linguistic space occupied by strictly defined individual or closely associated concepts and units of knowledge. 3.4

Standard Texts

Standard texts (often called "boilerplate" in US English) are more extended identical (or nearly identical) chunks of text that recur under specific circumstances. For instance, the preamble to a contract or a power of attorney is an example of a standard text. These chunks of text range from incomplete sentences to full sentences to text passages that go beyond single sentences to form paragraphs or even longer segments. Regardless of their scope, these components can be documented in and re­ trieved from terminological entries analogous to terms, multi­ word terms, and phrases. 3.5

standard texts

Abbreviated Forms of Terms

We have seen that the notion of a term can be expanded to include standard texts. Conversely, the full form of a term can also be expressed in a shorter form with abbreviated forms or symbols. These abbreviated forms of terms, in addition to the items cited above, can all be viewed as terminological units that must be identified accordingly when they are entered into terminology collections. 3.6

linguistic space

Canonical Forms of Terms

When terms are recorded during the course of terminology management—entered in lists, on file cards, or in terminology databases (TDBs)—they are always represented in the standard "dictionary form" with which users of the language in question are familiar. The following rules reflect these conventions as they apply to many European languages. Practitioners should,

INF Abbreviated Forms INFB 8:332



however, always check standard practice for their own lan­ guages. •

Only those terms that are capitalized in standard discourse are capitalized in terminology resources, i.e.: • In most Latin-character languages (English, Romance, and Nordic languages) common nouns are not capi­ talized. • In German all nouns are capitalized. • In English, proper nouns and proper adjectives (the names of specific objects and adjectives associated with them are capitalized), e.g., the Washington Monument, an Arabian horse, etc. • Capitalization rules for some elements, such as titles of works, vary among American, Canadian, and British English, and among English, French, and other Euro­ pean languages. Standard reference works should be consulted to ensure correct usage for specific languages and regional variations. • No other parts of speech (verbs, adjectives, adverbs, etc.) are capitalized. Although these rules are familiar from standard lexico­ graphical practice, there seems to be a temptation in the creation of technical glossaries and other special language collections to capitalize either the first letter or even all letters in all terms, although these words are not normally capitalized. This tendency should be strictly avoided because it does not provide users with the information that they need to use the words properly when writing sentences. • Nouns should be entered in their singular form and, in lan­ guages where other declensional endings can be added to nouns, in their nominative form. Nouns that only occur in the plural or that have different meanings in the plural constitute an exception to this rule. For instance, the English singular noun plastic does not mean precisely the same thing as the plural form plastics (which means types of plastic materials). The singular and plural terms should be treated as two separate concepts.


singular form

18 •

PRINCIPLES OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT In languages where nouns have gender, nouns should be listed independently and gender should be indicated sepa­ rately rather than preceding the noun with an article. Example (where "die" and "w" represent options for identifying a feminine noun): Tellerfeder, die Tellerfeder, w.

articles and gender

Not: die Tellerfeder (Obviously, if nouns are preceded by articles, all the nouns in the language would be alphabetized, e.g., under le/la (fr) or der/dieIdas (de).) •

Verbs should be entered in their infinitive form, but in English one should avoid including the particle to with the infinitive form. (Again, were one to include to for each verb, all the verbs would be alphabetized under the letter t.)

Multiword terms should be entered in their spoken form ir the main entry for a terminological unit, i.e., diaphragn spring fingertip hardening, not fingertip hardening, diaphragm spring. In a hardcopy resource, or if an electronic resource does not provide adequate search capability for finding embedded ele­ ments, cross-references can be used to point to an entry:


Inverted form: fingertip hardening, diaphragm spring: see diaphragm spring fingertip hardening

Permuted form: fingertip — diaphragm spring ~ hardening: see diaphragm spring fingertip hardening


spoken form

inverted form

permuted form


The objective of descriptive terminology management is to document all terms used to designate the concepts treated in a single discipline, usually in the social sciences. It is not the purpose of this kind of terminology management to prescribe usage, but rather to document all the terms that occur or are suggested for a concept. Riggs, Mälkiä, and Budin provide

SEE Descriptive Terminology 2.1.4:184



detailed information on the selection of terminology that is to be included in systematic descriptive collections treating the terminology of the social sciences. 5


Methodologically speaking, terminology management for nonspecialist writers is frequently descriptive in nature. Under ideal circumstances, this work can be conducted systematically, in which case the terminologist has the luxury of collecting repre­ sentative works in a given subject field, compiling the appropri­ ate term lists, developing concept systems, and establishing equivalent relations for two or more languages based on coher­ ent research. Despite the advantages offered by systematic project plan­ ning, translators and technical communicators are frequently forced to perform terminology management on an ad hoc basis, dealing with the disconnected subsets of terminology that occur in isolated, sometimes drastically fragmented texts. In team situations, pragmatic considerations dictate that the terminol­ ogist document every term occurring in texts that is not likely to be part of the nonspecialist's general active vocabulary. This dictum imposes on the terminologist the obligation to anticipate the needs of users who may possess less technical knowledge than the terminologist him or herself. This means that even sub­ standard or deprecated terms must be documented, at least in one language direction, because if they occur under any circum­ stances, the user must have access to appropriate documenta­ tion. Both the terminologist and the translator or writer must frequently cope with partial knowledge and incomplete concept systems because existing texts present fragmented views of the subject field(s) treated. Furthermore, many texts deal with multiple subject fields or are highly interdisciplinary in nature. When preparing subject-specific terminology products, it is important to distinguish among: •

general language words that can be satisfactorily found in general lexicographical resources • broader scientific terms that apply to other subject fields in addition to the one being treated

Concept Systems 1.4.1:89

ad hoc terminology management SEE Translationoriented Terminology 2.1.1:147 Technical Writing Vol. 11, 7.1



the subject-specific terminology that should form the core of the terminology collection for the project at hand For many translator-terminologists, particularly those doing ad hoc work, the solution to this dilemma is to create global files containing all three kinds of entries (general, broader, and subject-specific), but to code or classify the entries appropriate­ ly so that subject-specific items can be successfully extracted from the entire database in the event that there is a need to ex­ change terminology or otherwise produce a clearly classified set of terminological entries. 6

INF Classification INFB 9:334


Deciding which terms to treat in technical terminology stan­ dards is problematic because one must differentiate among the terms that occur in the discipline in order to select only those terms that require standardization. Essentially, standardizes should include the following kinds of terms: all keywords in the titles and subtitles of the standards administered by a given committee • any terms used in a committee's standards that are not clearly defined or familiar in general language • any terms from a standard that are essential to understand­ ing and using the standard • all members of a concept field, for instance, for the term container, a complete collection would contain all relevant kinds of containers (e.g., intermodal, modular, returnable, reusable, and shipping containers, to name just a few) Special care should be taken to identify terms that have more than one meaning or whose meaning differs in a given subject field from their meaning in general language. The definitional material provided for these terms should clearly distinguish their special meanings from the general language sense with which non-expert users may be familiar. For in­ stance, in glassmaking the term metal can be defined as "mol­ ten glass in a melting unit", a potentially astounding conse­ quence for the layperson if the subject field is not identified. The term list should include: • common abbreviations

terminology standards

Terminology Collections INFB 1:325

specialized meanings

7.7. TERM SELECTION full forms of terms for which the abbreviation is the stan­ dard listed term • standard symbols, especially if they are likely to appear by themselves out of context Committees should check other standards of their committee, their organization, or related organizations to see if a term has already been satisfactorily defined. If it has, the existing defi­ nition should be used. If the committee agrees that the concept defined is the same concept, but they wish to modify the de­ finition, an attempt should be made to harmonize the definitions between the two committees because conflicting nuances create confusion among experts and nonspecialists alike. Terms should be organized thematically and checked for logical, partitive, and associative relations. When terms from initial lists are organized in concept systems, superordinate terms will be found to be missing. These are often terms that experts take for granted, but that can cause problems for nonspecialists and should be included in the standard. It is important to remember that the audience for a standard includes students, technicians, technical writers, and engineers who work in other related fields. The needs of these end users will differ from the needs of the expert. In this regard, experts sometimes neglect to define the most basic terms in their disci­ pline because these terms are so well known to them. By the same token, the definition of such basic terms can sometimes lead to the greatest points of controversy among experts. If a committee already has written a Terminology Standard and terms are defined there or in another related standard, they do not have to be repeated in an individual technical standard, but the standard should make reference to the location of the definitions. Other terms that can be omitted from standards include: • terms that are generally defined throughout science and industry (e.g., copper) • terms that actually belong to other disciplines and are de­ fined in the appropriate standards (although relevant crossreferences will be useful) In keeping with the admonition to consider the users of the standard, committees should take into consideration all terms that occur in their literature, not just those that they decide to



missing terms

standards users

appropriate omissions




elevate to the status of standardized or preferred terms. Any synonyms and variants such as admitted and deprecated terms should be cited, with pointers to preferred usage so that users are not left unable to find potentially familiar terms that may occur in the materials they are using. Again, this assistance is particularly useful for technical writers, translators, students, and specialists from related disciplines. Care should be taken not to standardize terms that are currently in a state of flux because of rapidly evolving technology. This aspect can be dif­ ficult to judge, however, in new disciplines where inaccurate, inelegant, or polysemic terms can establish themselves very rapidly and lead to difficulties later. 7


Theoretically, terminologists are admonished to create concept systems, then to assign terms to the concepts making up those systems. In reality, the process is a circular one: generally speaking, individual terminologists and even standardization committees begin their work in a descriptive fashion, collecting terms from existing texts and spoken discourse. Frequently, preliminary definitions from existing sources are collected at this stage. The terms are then used to create initial concept systems, and definitions are revised and redrafted based on relations revealed in the concept systems. In prescriptive ter­ minology environments, decisions may also be made at this stage concerning which terms to cite as preferred terms (either those found initially, or new ones designed to reflect more de­ manding criteria for term formation). Inevitably, as the ter­ minologists work with term assignments and definitions, it may prove necessary to readjust the concept system itself to accom­ modate new knowledge and the multidimensionality of concept systems. New terms can present themselves at each stage of the process, underscoring the dynamic nature of all terminology management activity.

dynamic revision


Arntz, Reiner, and Heribert Picht. 1989. Einführung in die Terminologiearbeit. Studien zu Sprache und Technik. Vol. 2. Reiner Arntz and Norbert Wegner, eds. Hildesheim/Zürich/New York: Georg Olms.



Felber, Helmut, and Gerhard Budin. 1989. Terminologie in Theorie und Praxis. Tübing­ en: Gunter Narr Verlag. Benson, Morton, Evelyn Benson, and Robert Ilson. 1986. The BBI Combinatory Dictionary of English: A Guide to Word Combinations. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company. Hohnhold, Ingo. 1990. Übersetzungsorientierte Terminologiearbeit: Eine Grundlegung flir Praktiker. Stuttgart: Intra. Picht, Heribert, and Jennifer Draskau. 1985. Terminology: an Introduction. Surrey: The Department of Linguistic and International Studies. Sager, Juan C 1990. A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam/ Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.

Section 1.2 Concept Representation 1.2.1 Term Formation JUAN C. SAGER 1


Term formation is the process of naming the concepts required by a particular special language community for the development of cognitive processes and communication. It is a conscious human activity and differs from the arbitrariness of general word formation processes by its greater awareness of pre-exist­ ing patterns and models and of its social responsibility for facilitating communication and the transmission of knowledge. Term formation, like word formation, can consist of the ab­ solute invention of a new combination of phonemes or graph­ emes. This is, however, extremely rare. Usually term formation relies on existing lexical elements and combines them in parti­ cular ways that can be described and hence used as models for subsequent formation processes. We must therefore distinguish between the formation of simple terms consisting of a single lexical element and the creation of complex terms consisting of two or more lexical elements, regardless of their graphemic connection and combinability. Complex terms can be com­ pounds, derivatives with affixes, simple juxtapositions, or phra­ sal units with articles and prepositions. There are no simple lin­ guistic criteria for distinguishing between complex terms like, for example, low-calorie diet or low-level radioactive solid waste and such free-formed phrases as a low resistance level or a low error rate. 2


Term formation always occurs in a particular environment, e.g., in a research laboratory, a design office, a workshop or in any other situation where people have a need for new forms of expression. Modes of term formation differ according to (1) the subject area in which it occurs, (2) the nature of the people involved, and (3) the origin of the stimulus for term formation.

term formation word formation

terminological units

Term Selection 7.7:75

26 2.1


Since some conceptual relations are expressible in patterns of term formation, the inherent knowledge structure of a subject field can suggest through its internal relations the preferred patterns for combining linguistic elements into terms. In an ideal situation, term formation obeys strict rules that mirror conceptual relations as far as the linguistic rule system permits. In such a case, we speak of transparent terms because readers are assumed to have a better grasp of the meaning of a term if they can recognize the conceptual structure of a complex con­ cept through the patterns used to combine lexical elements. Such regular naming processes are best illustrated by the no­ menclatures of the biological sciences and chemistry. In this sense, term formation attempts to overcome the arbitrariness of natural language designation. 2.2

Human Factors

Since term formation is a deliberate human activity, the people involved in such processes variously influence the creation of terms. Their education and their command of native and foreign linguistic resources gives them more or less flexibility of ex­ pression and hence ability to create new terms. In English, which is the focus of this article, and in many other European languages, the knowledge of Latin and Greek, for example, has in the past been highly influential in the development of special subject designations and remains important today. The social responsibility and role of these people makes them aware of the need for systematicity in term creation and the maintenance of an open and transparent system of communication. 2.3

transparent terms

Latin roots Greek roots

The Stimulus for Term Formation

Since term formation responds to different stimuli, it may be foreseeable and predictable or totally ad hoc. In chemistry, for example, where the derivation of new substances and com­ pounds can be theoretically planned, potential names can be held in readiness for naming the successful combination of ele­ ments. In the naming of motor car models, a series of related names may be proposed by advertising specialists for selection by the design and marketing teams. In scientific processes, the

systematic naming

SEE Chemical Nomenclature 2.2.5:218



presence of a method and the vicinity of other scientific names usually provide a limited range of naming possibilities. In cases of surprise discovery and inventions, however, naming is com­ pletely unprepared and often arbitrary. 2.4

Primary and Secondary Term Formation

A major distinction has to be made between (1) primary and (2) secondary term formation because these two processes are ruled by different motivations and influences. The fundamental differ­ ence between these two situations lies in the fact that in primary term formation, there is no direct linguistic precedent, though there may be more or less strict rules for the formation of ap­ propriate terms. In secondary term formation, there is always the precedent of an existing term with its own motivation. While the former can be spontaneous, the latter is influenced by the existence of a term and can be designed and engineered. Primary term formation is the process of terminology cre­ ation that accompanies concept formation as a result of scien­ tific and technological innovation or change in a linguistic com­ munity. It is, therefore, usually monolingual. It may be provi­ sional, i.e., accompanied by a stipulative or otherwise tempor­ ary definition until a definitive name is accepted (e.g., in the scientific naming of plants that must be approved by an interna­ tional committee), or it may be seen as definitive. Secondary term formation is the process of creating a new term for an existing concept and happens in two distinct situa­ tions: when a designation is changed at a later date as a result of monolingual revision of a terminology, e.g., for the purpose of producing a standards document • on the occasion of the transfer of scientific and techno­ logical knowledge from one linguistic community to an­ other, which is carried out by means of term creation Secondary term formation is more often subject to guide­ lines than primary term formation because the new term to be created may have to be justified in some way and this justifi­ cation may include reference to the form of existing terms. It may therefore be said that it is the proper concern of terminologists to provide such guidelines on the basis of the term and

primary term formation

secondary term formation

term formation guidelines



word formation patterns of the subject field and natural lan­ guage in question. 3


In all sciences and technologies, new terms are regularly required for new objects, parts of objects, and new processes. The objects and methods of inquiry of each special subject de­ termine the concepts with which it operates and the designations required for these concepts. The formation of terms is carried out by three different methods, namely by: • the use of existing resources • the modification of existing resources • the creation of new linguistic entities 3.1

new terms

The Use of Existing Resources

In this approach, it is common to extend the meaning of an existing term to embrace that of a new concept, e.g., spaceship or telephone, even motorcar, now refer to a much wider range of objects than could be imagined when the words were first created. The most common extension of meaning occurs when the words of everyday usage are used to signal general concepts we choose not to name more specifically. Especially parts of the body have always served to represent parts of artifacts and apparatus; for example, finger, hand and arm for various mov­ able parts; leg and foot for supporting parts; head and face for prominent exposed and visible parts; nose, lip, tongue, ear, and heel for protuberances; eye and mouth for openings; elbow and knee for certain angles or articulations. Where the extension of meaning is not obvious, naming is based on an expressed analogy with existing designations. The most common way to assign such new designations is to use simile, i.e., to name a concept in analogy to another, familiar one. Examples: a rock-like substance, an L-shaped room After reflection, an initial similarity may often prove to be irrelevant or even misleading. It may, therefore, later be found

concept extension

body parts SEE Patents 2.1.3:171



1.2.1 TERM FORMATION to be an inadequate motivation for naming. Simile can also be considered as a preliminary to term formation, which assists in the fixation of a concept by some easy means of comparison. Simile can be overtly expressed by the use of such qualifying expressions as -style, -like, or -type. Examples: tooth-like projection, track-type bulldozer, plate-like frame Another technique of using existing resources is to exploit the polysemic nature of general language designations. Instead of saying that something is like something else, we call it by the thing it most resembles. This produces metaphorical com­ bined names whose motivation can be found in similarities of form, function, and position. Examples: dovetail back saw goose-neck clamp dog-nose hand vice tracer finger heart wheel tooth lock washer mushroom ceiling ball hinges river bed umbrella cupola pin hinge canal bed barrel vault wing wall bedrock trunk of a column pile-head pile-foot insulation blanket ribbed floor shell of the house This type of formation is equally common in general word formation, a graphic example of which we find in the popular names of plants. Examples: snapdragon, buttercup, busy Lizzie In some instances, the metaphor is complete and stands on its own. In such cases we cannot distinguish between the gen­ eral language form and the special reference given to them in the field of civil engineering, as in the examples below. Examples: furring, anchor, apron, bleeding, pocket A special designation in one field can also be re-used in another field for a different concept and so produce homonyms. Examples: hardware —

in the language of computers and in general usage




interdisciplinary borrowing

30 piping 3.2

PRINCIPLES OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT — in the language of soil mechanics, in hydraulic works, and in sewing The Modification of Existing Resources

The most common method for designating new concepts is to modify existing terms by: • derivation or affixation, which is the addition of suffixes and/or prefixes • compounding, which is the combination of existing words into new ones • creating phrasal terms • conversion, which is neither affixation nor compounding, but a syntagmatically varied use of the same form, e.g., a noun used as a verb, an adjective used as a noun • compression, i.e., any form of shortening of an expression formed by means of abbreviation, clipping, acronymy, etc. Functionally, derivation and compounding serve the purpose of closer determination of a concept—narrowing its intensionwhile at the same time showing the relation that exists between the new concept and its origin. In this way, determination can make transparent a particular dimension of the conceptual struc­ ture. This is both its strength and its weakness, for by ex­ pressing one relation, it is silent on others that may be consi­ dered conceptually more significant. One of the most frequent modes of determination is to relate an object to its particular function or use in the special subject field. Examples: design drawing fire-resistant material drainage ditch design chart rock-tunnelling machine field work The technique of determination as a word formation device probably originates in syntagmatic determination. We may as­ sume an evolution from a longer syntagm as, for example in "a post that is built to support a beam", where the relative clause determines post by its function, or "girders cast prior to con­ struction". Consequently, there are often various grammatical possibilities for closer specification, of which one, usually the shortest, becomes generally accepted.

term modification

concept determination

Intension and Extension INFB 11:339

syntagmatic determination

1.2.1 TERM FORMATION Examples: beam support post, pre-cast girders Determination can affect any word class. Examples: NOUNS: bolted connection round channel covering material wind load groundwater pressure masonry structure VERBS: prefabricate prebuild prestress pre-cast ADJECTIVES: v-shaped inlaid In English, the determining modifier usually precedes the concept modified. Difficulties in interpretation occur when a concept is determined by more than one modifier. Examples: water supply systems road building material minimum safe distance site-assembled acoustical materials In cases involving difficulty in interpretation or ambiguity, it is possible to indicate the closer relation between two of three items by using hyphens. Hyphenation then offers some help in overtly explicating the relations between parts of the term. Examples: sound-proof construction high-tension wire soil-moisture conditions anti-freeze agent loosely packed, rock-type soils Compounds of phrases containing prepositions, articles, conjunctions and adverbs are more often hyphenated than noun compounds. Examples: tile-and-a-half-tile cast-in-place stick-and-rag work right-of-way


INFO Part of Speech INFB 7:331

determining modifier


3.2.1 Affixation Affixation takes several forms and has several functions. For­ mally, it can take the form of either pre-, in-, or suffixation. Functionally, it can be used for either determination or the modification of word classes (parts of speech). In practice, most English suffixes produce a change of word class, whereas pre­ fixes are used for determination.




The number of affixes in special English is very large be­ cause English has borrowed or adapted many Latin and Greek words, word elements, and affixes. In general, English freely admits and assimilates word elements and words from other languages, and in science and technology in particular, draws continuously and heavily on Greek and Latin for prefixes, stems, and suffixes. Examples: PREFIXES STEMS SUFFIXES superelevation intersect anhydrous frawsitional centedine adhesive corrosion hydrodynamic homogenous deposition Theology compaction Determination (prefixation). Prefixes can assist consi­ derably in the systematic structuring of special vocabularies by the creation of term pairs. Examples: upstream → midstream → downstream stabilize = destabilize; overpass = underpass Opposite terms can be created easily by the negatives un-, dis-, a-, de-, in-. Examples: unbalance unload unstable disconnect displacement decompose anhydrous inconsistent inefficient Changing Word Classes (suffixation). In many cases the change of word category is accompanied by some type of determination, e.g., to indicate a process associated with more general verbal action. The suffixes -age, -ate, -esce, -ize, -ise, and especially -ify create process verbs, usually from nouns or adjectives but also from roots. Examples: bandage desiccate effervesce acidify stabilize standardize The suffix -ing changes verbs into nouns and thereby indi­ cates either the process or an entity associated with the process.

Latin elements Greek elements



verb-forming suffixes


7.2.7 TERM FORMATION Examples: plan → planning break → breaking plumb → plumbing

noun-forming suffixes

load → loading cover → covering

The suffix -ion changes verbs into nouns. Examples: found → elevate → project →

foundation elevation projection

transit → transition install → installation

The suffix -ation changes verbs into nouns. Examples: accumulate → stabilize →

accumulation stabilization

irrigate → elevate →

irrigation elevation

Other noun-forming suffixes include: reinforce → press →

reinforcement pressure



Suffixes such as -al, -ant, -ar, -ary, -en, -ent, -ic, -ive, -lent, -ly, -ory, -ous, -y form adjectives.


Examples: mechanical, resistant, angular, binary, woolen, latent, carbonic, arid, facile, flexible, saline, explosive, succulent, ovoid, exploratory, fibrous, coppery Adjectives can be converted into nouns by such suffixes as -age, -ance, -cy, -escence, and especially -ity. In engineering the suffix '-ity' usually describes a property. Examples: resistant → grave → humid → moist →

resistance gravity humidity moisture

elastic → accurate → intense →

elasticity accuracy intensity

Suffixes can also effect a change in the categories of nouns. Examples: Conversion of concrete into abstract nouns: drain → drainage tunnel → excavator → excavation


adjectiveforming suffixes



Change from countable into mass nouns: sheets → sheeting scaffold → panels → panelling


3.2.2 Compounding A compound is a combination of two or more words into a new syntagmatic unit with a new meaning independent of the constit­ uent parts. In terminology there is the additional requirement that the new entity created must represent a concept relevant to a particular subject field. Since most compounding occurs in nouns, the following examples mainly illustrate compound nouns. When there are two elements in a compound, the first ele­ ment usually determines the second, which is called the nu­ cleus. Examples: water load, masonry structure, canal bed, damp course, rock floor, sight width Compounds themselves can enter into combinations for new compounds as either nucleus or determinant. Examples: rock-type soil, weather-resisting feature, foundation soil failure, vibration-proof construction. With three elements, two patterns are possible: ( A + B ) + C e.g., (butt-welded) seams A + ( B + C ) e.g., overload (relief valve) More complex patterns occur and are usually understood only in the framework of a special subject. Examples, with the structure indicated by brackets: (bending-moment) diagram (extra-rapid-hardening) cement advanced (waste water) treatment minimum (strain energy) (twisted-folded) energy (data control) (blockfill-in)process (reinforced concrete) (underwater construction) Eponymic compounds with proper nouns, names of persons or places are frequent. They are used to designate substances, materials, objects, instruments, methods, processes and even


INFO Headwords INFB 6:330

eponymic compounds



measurements. They have the advantage of unique differ­ entiation but lack systematic import. Examples: Warren truss, Portland cement, French drain, Poole's tiles Noun compounds contribute to the building of terminological systems. The nucleus of the compound, usually the last ele­ ment, can then indicate the category to which the concept be­ longs and the determinant indicates the criterion for the sub­ division of the category. Examples: wind load, ice load; marble structure, metal structure The following sets illustrate the diversity of compounds that can be associated with a single nucleus: riveted connection canal tunnel bolted connection pedestrian tunnel glued connection vehicle tunnel screwed connection subway tunnel nailed connection railway tunnel dowelled connection traffic tunnel underground tunnel According to the nature of the nucleus, it is possible to dis­ tinguish between types of compounds that designate objects, properties, processes, or operations. Examples: Objects: concrete breaker concrete roof concrete mixer concrete pipe concrete paver concrete pile concrete placer concrete pump Properties: concrete strength concrete stability Processes/Operations : concrete slump test concrete casting Depending on the nature of the nucleus, the determinant can specify greater detail or indicate a purpose, the means by which an operation is carried out, the object to which a process is applied, or the time, place, or other circumstances that thus become a distinctive integral feature of the new concept.

terminological systems

determinant Junction



The determinant may specify the material of which the nucleus is made in order to differentiate it from similar objects made from other materials. Examples: wooden post, steel post, concrete post, stone post The determinant may express an inherent property of the new concept that is not inherent in the nucleus. Examples: waste deposit, rock floor, volume computation, power shovel, retaining wall, pneumatic caisson The determinant may specify the regular use of the nucleus. Examples: insulating material, freezing-point depressant, anti-freeze agent, rock-tunnelling machine, sound absorbing units The determinant may specify the object of the verbal noun. Examples: site paving, soil testing, site clearing, earth moving Compound adjectives serve to describe processes of pro­ duction, to typify and specify operations, and to identify new entities. Examples: light sensitive, sound-insulating, heat resistant, air-entraining Compound verbs are usually formed with particles and are in practice indistinguishable from general language verbs. Examples: outfall, overlie, underpin, overflow, underplant

compound adjectives

compound verbs

3.2.3 Creating Phrasal Terms The creation of phrasal terms is closely related to compound­ ing, and the preference for one or the other method is a matter of linguistic predispositions. The Germanic languages, for ex­ ample, have greater facilities for creating compounds, whereas the Romance languages have to rely on the creation of phrasal units for achieving the same degree of complexity in naming. In English phrasal terms are created when a compound may not be sufficiently clear or even be ambiguous. For example, the phrase "bridges that have members that are joined by pins" has

phrasal terms


7.2.7 TERM FORMATION been terminologized into the phrase "bridges with pin-joined members". Examples: detection of cracks by dye penetrant method; dye-penetrant crack detection; artificially aged then cold worked Some phrasal terms permit contrasting distinctive features more eflfectively than simpler compounds. Examples: infinitely variable speed transmission / step-by-step variable (speed) transmission dedicated computer / general purpose computer 3.2.4 Conversion Conversion is the change of word class without morphological alteration of the word. In terminological naming processes, conversion is largely used for creating the noun concepts asso­ ciated with verbal ones that are required by the classificatory function of language. This method is common for English, but rare in other languages that have distinctive word class inflec­ tions. In English usage, therefore, it cannot always be decided clearly whether a noun has been converted to a verb or vice versa. Examples: mold supply design site

tread pile

load span


sound frame

3.2.5 Compression Special languages can also create new forms by compressing existing long terms in various ways. Compression has the dual function of providing shorter forms of expression for frequently used terms and new exclusive names for long forms that might not be understood as terminological units. The most common type of compression is the creation of acronyms from initial letters of longer words. Examples: FM, AC, TNT, DDT; A (Amp), V (Volt) The names of many institutions are abbreviated forms, some of which have taken over so completely that the full form is practically never used, e.g., UNESCO, NATO, which have evolved to such an extent that they have virtually become letter words, i.e., their pronunciation is like that of any other word.


Abbreviated Forms 1NFB 8:332



Another frequent and highly productive method is clipping or shortening in which syllables or letters are omitted from any part of the word. Examples: maths (GB), math (US), lab, vet, intercom, vertijet


A particular case is that of compounding and simultaneous clipping. Examples: stagnation + inflation = stagflation biological + electronic = bionic 3.3

The Creation of New Lexical Entities (Neologisms)

Terminological neologisms result from the need for the unique naming of new concepts for which there is no linguistic model or precedent in the form of an autochthonous pattern. There is no single method for forming neologisms; several quite distinct processes are employed. Neologisms can be categorized as one of two types: either they are totally new creations or they are borrowings from other languages. Totally new creations are exceedingly rare in most lan­ guages. Gas and paraffin are new creations that have been ac­ cepted in many languages—although with several different meanings. Byte is a totally new term originated in the United States that has become nearly universal. For borrowing there are two major traditions in many Euro­ pean languages. The first is borrowing from ancient Greek and Latin, which has become the primary source for importing new linguistic elements rather than whole words in the biological sciences. The vast majority of the English scientific vocabulary orig­ inates by borrowing elements from Greek and Latin, which were then variously anglicized. After Greek and Latin, English borrows from French, although with such a long tradition of borrowing from all three languages it is not always clear wheth­ er a word has come into English via French or whether it has been taken directly from one of the classical languages. Since Greek, Latin, and even French words and word elements (e.g., caisson, maneouvre, reservoir) are such an integral part of the English language, it is difficult to distinguish between genuine neologisms created by derivation using Latin or Greek word


new creations

interlingual borrowing

scientific vocabulary

7.2.7 TERM FORMATION elements and direct borrowing. For example, the word television, while obviously a new form, can be said to have been produced by derivation, because it has not been borrowed as a whole with its current meaning. Only the taking over of Greek and Latin concepts and their designation would therefore be properly described as borrowing, e.g., the geometrical concepts of diameter, tangent, spiral, and circular. On the other hand, the use of Greek and Latin expression forms for new concepts produces genuine neologisms, e.g., excavator, telemeter, pylon. The other tradition of borrowing is concerned with taking over terms from modern languages in the process of secondary term formation. Some borrowings of this type are successful and become fully incorporated into the receiving language. English, for example, has completely adopted a set of terms of German origin from mineralogy and geology (abraum-salt, eisenkiesel, grauwacke, graben, fletz, etc.). In other cases, the initially borrowed word is later replaced by a formation more suitable to the pattern of the language. For example, the new concept that was named by the English neologism FAX, created by shortening the compound facsimile transmission, was re­ named in French by the more transparent telecopieur. In Span­ ish the direct borrowing of slot de un frame is now being chal­ lenged by registro de un marco. Another form of neologism is the calque or loan translation, whereby a term from one language is translated element by element into the receiving language. This practice is particularly frequent in massive terminology transfer either as a result of the translation of product and service literature or the translation of textbooks. Examples: English: interface → Spanish: interfaz/interface online → en línea format {verb) → formatear Loan translations may also, after a time, be replaced by more appropriate autochtonous forms in order to exploit the creative potential of the language. In Spanish, for example, the loan translation interfaz was at one time challenged by the neo­ logism interficie formed on the pattern of superficie, which would match the English pair surface/interface.

39 derivation

secondary term formation

loan translation terminology transfer



There may even be competition in the field of loan transla­ tion. In Spanish, for example, there are synonyms because of a double loan translation. From French there is lingüística informática and from English there is lingüistica computational. 4

double loan translation


Term formation habits are influenced by perception and obser­ vation. When this perception is first-hand and carried out in the observers' first language, they will use the means of that lan­ guage to designate the concepts they discover or establish. Ac­ quiring knowledge in a second language not only influences term formation habits in the direction of that language, it also inhibits the natural growth of the first language because the first language is excluded from the cognitive processes that lead to concept naming. As a consequence, languages of developing countries also come under the influence of the word formation patterns of other languages and may genuinely widen their means of ex­ pression. Depending on the linguistic distance between the ex­ porting and the importing language, on common elements be­ tween the languages, and on the traditions of contact between the languages, a preference for techniques of term formation may emerge among the various available means, such as direct borrowing, loan translation, paraphrase, etc. Major portions of the terminology of science, once they have been created, are likely to stay unchanged (at least in the ori­ ginal language). In contrast, the terminology of technology is much more volatile, both in its form and its existence. This is true because of changes in materials, methods of production, design, etc. This lack of stability is accentuated in transferred terminology, i.e., terminology created by secondary term for­ mation from concepts borrowed from another linguistic commu­ nity. The coexistence of several methods of secondary interlin­ gual term formation, e.g., direct borrowing, loan translation, paraphrase, parallel formation (constituent recreation), adapta­ tion, and complete new creation, which may be used simul­ taneously or sequentially, provides the occasion for several al­ ternative or competing new terms. As a result, when a new


Language Policy 3.1:245, 3.2:261

linguistic stability vs. volatility

7.2.7 TERM FORMATION concept is introduced, it may take several years before the rele­ vant terminology stabilizes. Current attitudes regarding secondary term formation can be broadly divided into purist and permissive camps, and on the whole mirror existing attitudes with respect to any foreign lan­ guage influence. Purists prefer home-grown terminology but in many cases are usually fairly tolerant towards transnational or international terminology and towards whole families of terms that, having entered the language, prove useful and are there­ fore more readily accepted. While a permissive attitude is gen­ erally preferable, since it respects the self-regulatory mechan­ isms of language, it cannot be defended under circumstances of massive terminology transfer into a linguistic vacuum. Occa­ sional imports (direct borrowings) have to coexist with and come under the influence of established terms in a given subject field. When the entire subject field is new and the importing language has no pattern of absorption to offer, it will be neces­ sary to adopt a general policy for neology. Sager (1990) and Sager et al. (1980) provide additional in­ sights into term formation practices.


language policy


Sager, Juan C. 1990. Chapter 3: "Term Formation: Theory and Practice." A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 61-90. Sager, Juan C, David Dungworth, and Peter F. McDonald. 1980. Chapter 9. English Special Languages: Principles and Practice in Science and Technology. Wiesbaden: Brandstetter, 230-300.

1.2.2 Graphic and Other Semiotic Forms of Knowledge Representation in Terminology Management CHRISTIAN GALINSKI AND HERIBERT PICHT Translated by Sue Ellen Wright 1 INTRODUCTION

Every communication act between living beings depends on the use of signs that serve as the vehicle for transmitting the de­ sired message. (When we speak of "living beings" in this context we must also consider the extent to which we can speak of the "language" of animals, for instance, the "language" of bees.) These signs can be arranged and combined in more or less complex systems, depending on the stage of development of the beings involved. The resulting systems are referred to as systems of signs or semiotic systems. In human communication, these systems can be distinguished as verbal and nonverbal in nature. Nonetheless, only humans have developed special languages used for communicating subject-field-specific (i.e., specialized) knowledge and information. To a large extent, this kind of communication is performed by means of scientific and techni­ cal writing, which results in a large variety of special language texts. (Certainly disciplines such as art, law, and the social sci­ ences also contribute to special literatures, and the terminologi­ cal techniques applied to special languages can even be utilized in the study of literature and belles lettres.) In specialized com­ munication—whether written or spoken—concepts constitute the smallest units used to communicate specialized knowledge and information. These units can be represented by verbal terms, nonverbal signs, alphanumeric characters or character strings, and a variety of hybrid forms. Specialized communication always involves knowledge trans­ fer, which in turn requires knowledge representation. In this sense, we can speak of both verbal and nonverbal knowledge


specialized communication INFO

Special Language INFB 5:330


7.2.2 GRAPHIC REPRESENTATION representation (including all types of intermediate and mixed forms), whereby this chapter will concentrate on visual nonver­ bal forms. Traditionally in terminology science, conceptual knowledge is described by means of a definition or an explanation, in which case a graphic (or other nonverbal representation) can be desirable as a supplementary device. The extension of written text toward other forms of representation systems has, however, led to a reconsideration of nonverbal knowledge representa­ tions. This trend has led to a reorientation in terminology and special language research, whereby nonverbal visual forms of knowledge representation have taken on increased significance. Special language texts provide the primary vehicle for com­ munication in special subject fields. Text linguistics charac­ terizes a special language text as a representation of a more or less complex subject-field-related information content using verbal and nonverbal signs. The same content can be repre­ sented using various forms of the same text type or by different text types. The critical factor in this case is not the use of non­ verbal forms of representation as such, but rather the way they manifest themselves in these texts. For our purposes, it is meaningful to distinguish between conceptual knowledge and propositional knowledge, whereby the former involves knowledge pertaining to a single concept in the terminological sense, and the latter relates to all forms of knowledge that are based on propositions, in which at least two concepts are placed in relation to one another so that they make a meaningful statement. 2

knowledge transfer

SEE Definitions 1.3.1:63

special language texts

conceptual knowledge propositional knowledge


Aside from the existence of diverse mixed forms, nonverbal visual forms of representation do not depend on any one lan­ guage, which does not, however, rule out the possibility that they may be subject to certain socio-cultural conventions. Con­ sequently, they are as a rule affected by conditions that have an impact on communication. In special language communication in general, however, they have achieved a certain level of harmonization in individual subject fields by developing their

mixed forms



own conventions, which have validity beyond socio-cultural boundaries. Indeed, some of these conventions have been stan­ dardized, for instance, by the use of symbols in electrical circuit diagrams (schematics) or technical drawings. An additional characteristic of nonverbal forms of repre­ sentation is that, in contrast to purely verbal texts, it is not es­ sential that graphic forms of representation be perceived in a linear way. Consequently, observers of a graphic representa­ tion—either consciously or subliminally—select those aspects of the representation that are relevant to their personal cognitive interests. Nor is the order in which these segments are observed necessarily always linear or sequential in nature. It is also ap­ parent that no "silent verbalization" has to occur when people encounter these forms of representation. In the strict sense, it is only appropriate to speak of purely nonverbal concept representation when a nonverbal symbol is used to represent a single concept. Nonetheless, this clear dis­ tinction is rarely maintained because most nonverbal repre­ sentations can also be viewed as propositional representations or as segments thereof. In such cases, individual concepts function as components in the given proposition. Another way to interpret this phenomenon would be to view these compo­ nents as characteristics that comprise the overall concept. Mixed and intermediate forms are also common, especially in cases involving complex nonverbal representations. There are obvious limits to the use of nonverbal representa­ tion in cases where concepts cannot be represented visually, e.g., the taste of a wine, the "hand" of a fabric, or abstract concepts such as a "court judgment" or a (legal) "right". The conditions under which nonverbal forms of representa­ tion are used determine their inherent characteristics as well as pertinent selection criteria. Their interpretation depends to a great extent on the following factors: • the level of knowledge possessed by perceivers and their familiarity with the conventions of the subject field involved • the intended application • the target audience Without at least a minimum familiarity with these factors and conventions, an observer will be unable to make sense of

graphic representation

propositional structure

inherent characteristics



nonverbal forms of representation (e.g., of a technical drawing such as the one shown in Figure 7, p. 50 ), whereas verbal re­ presentation imparts at least the illusion of understanding. 3


There is a rich variety of possible applications for nonverbal visual forms of representation, e.g., in technical literature and in training materials. Within this range, however, it is difficult to establish clear distinctions between forms of representation. If we focus on terminology management and terminography, however, it is possible to offer a pragmatic listing of areas of application by addressing the issue with respect to "terminology products" in the broadest sense: • special language dictionaries and lexica • standards and other regulatory documents • terminology databases • knowledge databases • technical encyclopedia The extent to which conceptual knowledge represented in nonverbal form is accepted in an application or even the extent to which this kind of representation is at all practical or desir­ able depends on the three factors cited above and on the tools available for the actual technical reproduction of the appropriate representational form for the intended objective. 4


INFO Terminology Activities 1NFB 2:327 terminology products

conceptual knowledge


This article classifies nonverbal representational forms as (1) alphanumeric, (2) graphic, and (3) pictorial. Of course, all classification systems vary according to the distinguishing cri­ teria selected. This list does not reflect any particular school of thought. It is derived from didactic considerations and non­ verbal representational forms that occur in practice, although other methods of classification have certainly been the subject of discussion. All these forms of nonverbal representation are, at least in principle, subject to systematic organization. It is possible to conceive of various kinds of mixed and intermediate forms within the same or between the different categories of concept representation. In reality, however, only

INFO Classification INFB 9:334

mixed forms



certain kinds actually occur in a given subject field, due partly to practical, subject-related reasons (e.g., formulas in chemis­ try) and partly to the prevailing working environment (e.g., flow charts for an operational process). Information compres­ sion and representational economy, which correspond to the tendency toward linguistic economy in special languages, play a significant role here. Based on form alone, nonverbal visual symbols can be divid­ ed into alphanumeric characters and character strings on the one hand, and graphic, pictorial representations on the other. Inter­ mediate forms created by mixing fairly simple graphic repre­ sentations and complex "descriptive" graphic representations (e.g., in chemistry), as well as various mixed forms between the above-cited basic types can only be alluded to here. Alphanumeric symbols consist of letters or numbers or com­ binations of both that are assigned to represent defined con­ cepts—at least when they are supposed to be used for special­ ized communication (e.g., the Greek letter t in mathematics) or they can derive their significance—directly or indirectly— from a defined system. Examples include: • Chemistry → The periodic table of the elements and the basic chemical concept system provide the basis for expressing chemical compounds in formulae. • Grading → 1 or and 2 or rating 3 or systems 4 or 5 or


= = = = =

Very Good Good Average Poor Failing

• Classifi- → 621.3 = "electrical engineering" in the cation Universal Decimal Classification (UDC)

Figure 1 : Microphone (Basic Symbol)

alphanumeric characters pictorial representations

1.2.2 GRAPHIC REPRESENTATION These criteria also apply for simple graphic symbols such as that shown in Figure 1, which represents the basic symbol according to ISO 3461.1:1988 for "microphone". The common feature of this kind of symbol is that they all have a low infor­ mation content and assume a certain degree of prior knowledge or familiarity with the conventions of the subject field in ques­ tion. Without this knowledge—even within a clear context—they are barely comprehensible.

47 graphic symbols

combined forms

Combinations of symbols in the framework of a system also allow for the relatively flexible design of simple propositions.

Figure 2: Public Information Symbols: Telephone + Location Pictorial representations can be characterized according to their extreme manifestations, e.g., concrete vs. abstract, but it doesn't seem very profitable to attempt this kind of definition because even a superficial analysis of the numerous possibilities for pictorial representation offers few options for clear-cut clas­ sification. (See Figure 3, which shows a photo and a computeraided drawing derived from a photo.)

Figure 3a: Photo

Figure 3b: Line Drawing

pictorial representation



Complex graphics often represent a limited number of essen­ tial salient characteristics associated with a concept. Their infor­ mation value is high, at least when they occur in the appropri­ ate contexts. Typical examples include play diagrams used for some types of sports (skating, tennis, etc.) or the public infor­ mation symbols used in airports. Traffic signs (and the icons used in Graphical User Interfaces (GUI)) can also be assigned to this category insofar as they provide direct information con­ cerning required behavior. On the other hand, the colors used in traffic signals have been systematized according to social convention and do not in themselves reflect any inherent rela­ tion to scientific color theory. It has also been demonstrated that graphic representations are less prone to inaccuracies than verbal ones because they do not depend on actual or intentional verbal inadequacies. As a rule, experts will identify an error in a drawing more quickly and easily than they will in a verbal description. If we concentrate our attention on what is being represented, we can distinguish among:

complex graphic symbols


• individual objects (e.g., a photo or drawing of the Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris, Figure 4a) • the standard architectural schematic for the same cathedral (Figure 4b) • formal objects (e.g., a schematic drawing of a typical cathe­ dral as it might appear on a map) • classes of objects (e.g., a map symbol for churches in gen­ eral) (Figure 4c). Some forms of graphic representation not only represent concepts in a manner comparable to the function of terms—they also combine according to complex "syntactical" structures to express detailed propositional information. Two cases in point are: • the combination of electrical and power circuit symbols to lay out schematic circuits. (Figure 5) • the combined use of highly conventionalized architectural elements to represent complete designs (Figures 6a and 6b).

syntactical structures


Figure 4a: The Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Paris

Figure 4b: Architectural Plan of Notre-Dame, Paris

Figure 4c: Map Symbols

Figure 5: Electrical Schematic




Figure 6a: General Door Elements

Figure 7: Tool drawing

Figure 6b: Door at Clivedon, Germantown, Pennsylvania



Figure 8: Block Diagrams The following forms of representation are common • the representation of a concrete object, such as a tool (per­ haps in different levels of abstraction) (Figure 7) • block diagrams used to represent components and functions on a highly abstract level (Figure 8) • tables (Figure 9, p. 52) • graphs (Figure 10, p.52) • icons (Figure 11, p.52) • various sequential process representations (e.g., flow charts, Figure 12, p. 53) • charts (Figure 13, p. 54). Figure 14 (p. 54) illustrates the fact that pictorial representa­ tions can contain dynamic elements. An additional option that still remains relatively rare today is the animated representation of events using a series of static representational forms. In this case, however, we have to ask whether these instances repre­ sent examples of conceptual representation; in most cases they would appear more likely to be complex representations of knowledge at the propositional level.

forms of representation




l °C

0 1 2 3 4 5 10 11 15 20

15,0 8,5 2,0 - 4,5 -11,0 -17,5 -50,0 -56,5 -56,5 -56,5



kp/cm2 1,033 0,916 0,810 0,714 0,628 0,550 0,269 0,230 0,122 0,055

23 43 55 81 44 72 42 63 70 748

kps2/m4 0,124 97 0,11340 0,102 67 0,092 733 0,083 551 0,075 080 0,042 084 0,037 107 0,019 741 0,008 969

Figure 9: Table for Calculating Atmospheric Pressure

Figure 10: Graphs with Multiple Curves

Figure 11: International Iconic Representation for Textile Care


Figure 12: Illustrative Management Flow Chart




Figure 13: Pie Charts

Figure 14: Dynamic Elements



Figure 15 (p. 56) illustrates the incidence of alternate sys­ tems designed to represent different aspects of a concept or concept system, i.e., in this case the use of line symbols vs. "ball and spoke" representation vs. "space filling" represen­ tation for chemical compounds. 5


New technical developments in knowledge representation have revealed that it is no longer defensible to maintain the earlier position that graphic and pictorial representations should only be used as devices to supplement definitions. It can be demon­ strated that alphanumeric symbols as well as graphic and picto­ rial representations can completely assume the function of both terms and definitions (Figure 16, p. 57). The kind of technical drawing shown in Figure 17 (p. 59) could theoretically be verbalized, but the verbal form of repre­ sentation would be rejected in practice. It is also questionable whether a verbalized form can achieve the same degree of pre­ cision. We have already noted that nonverbal visual forms of repre­ sentation have their limitations (e.g., they may require prior knowledge, as well as familiarity with subject-field-specific conventions, or the informational content involved may not—or at least not yet—be representable using nonverbal means). Thus it is apparent that nonverbal forms of representation are complementary to verbal forms of representation.

combined forms

technical drawings



Figure 15: Varied Forms of Representation for the Same Concept System



Figure 16: Combined Forms 6


Theoretical discussions of terminology are still coming to terms with the proliferation of nonverbal aspects in special language communication. Theorists will continue to have to cope with new and innovative forms of representation, not the least as a result of developments in computer software and hardware. This also explains why there are numerous forms of repre­ sentation for almost every concept. Furthermore, each concept must be defined within the framework of a theoretical proposi­ tion system. In the event of competing theories (e.g., the wave and particle theories of light) very similar concepts can be represented by the same or by very different forms of repre­ sentation. In strictly epistemological terms, this is not a case of "conceptual" polysemy, but rather of different concepts. From a semiotic point of view, objects used for purposes of specialized communication are represented in the broadest sense by signs, but signs themselves also constitute "objects". Con­ vention dictates that the "sign-objects" represent other objects. Consequently a sign-object can consist of verbal signs or non­ verbal signs or any sort of object (e.g., concrete objects such as flags, or concept representation in the form of sign language, etc.). These objects are designed to function as a representation

nonverbal communication




of a concept. For instance, a textile catalog can even use a piece of textile as a representation for the concepts associated with individual types of textiles. The development of modern computer hardware and soft­ ware has transformed the character of special language texts from originally static, linear character strings to dynamic, mul­ tidimensional compositions made up of sign objects that repre­ sent conceptual and prepositional knowledge, optionally accom­ panied by textual information. At present only some of these representational forms can be converted into other forms. In the future this will be possible with many of them. This means that the same information content can be represented by novel text types (e.g., computer worksheets, virtual reality scenarios) composed of different forms of representation. Strictly speaking, no information content can be exhaustively represented by a text, or even by the sum of all texts and other methods of representation. Nonetheless, the representational options afforded by modern hardware and software (multi­ media, hypertext, etc.) provide us with extensive tools for representing special knowledge more completely and in differ­ ent ways for different purposes. Thus we can imagine the ex­ pansion of the writing systems and representational forms of expression found in traditional texts toward the use of visual and other nonverbal forms of representation designed to provide more complete, multifaceted communication to a broader range of user groups. Forms that today are mainly static in nature will in the future be increasingly expressed using dynamic, multi­ dimensional forms of representation (see Figure 18).

text type

INFO Hypertext INFB 13:345

SEE Multidimensionality 1.4.2:98 1.4.3:119 1.4.4:133


Figure 17: Industrial Drawing



Example 18: Verbal and Visual Nonverbal Forms of Concept Representation




ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Figure 1: Figure 2: Figure 3: Figure 4:

Figure 5: Figure 6:

Figure 7: Figure 8:

Figure 9: Figure 10: Figure 11: Figure 12:

Figure 13: Figure 14: Figure 15:

Figure 16: Figure 17: Figure 18:

ISO 3461-1:1988, General principles for the creation of graphical symbols — Part 1: Graphical symbols for use on equipment. Geneva. ISO 7001:1990, Public information symbols. VideoMaker™. 1992. B & M International advertisement. Fachzeitschrift für technische Dokumentation: tekom Nachrichten 4. Janson, H.W. 1964. History of Art. Englewood Cliffs and New York: Prentice-Hall, Inc. and Harry N. Abrams, Inc., pp. 232-233. Washington, D.C. Street Map. USA: Rand McNally. Siemens. 1972. How to Read German Schematic Diagrams. Munich: Siemens. Calloway, Stephen, and Elizabeth Cromley, eds. 1994. The Elements of Style: A Practical Encyclopedia of Interior Architectural Details from 1485 to the Present. New York and London: 11 and 108. Auto-trol Technology™ Computer-Aided Design program documentation Picht, Heribert. 1994. "On Object and Concept Representation with Focus on Nonverbal Forms of Representation. " International Conference on Terminology Science and Terminology Planning, Riga, 17-19, August 1992. Jennifer Kewley Draskau and Heribert Picht, eds. Vienna: IITF Series 4, 243. NACA. 1955. ICAO Standard Atmospheres. NACA Report 1235. BSI DD52:1977. Recommendations for the presentation of tables, graphs and charts (Draft for Development). London: BSI. International Textile Care Symbols (Product Insert). Lester, Ronald H., Norbert L. Enrick, and Harry E. Mottley, Jr. 1985. Quality Control for Profit, Second Edition, Revised and Expanded. New York and Basel: Marcel Dekker, Inc., 369. BSI DD52:1977. Recommendations for the presentation of tables, graphs and charts (Draft for Development). London: BSI. Auto-trol Technology™ Computer-Aided Design (program documenta­ tion). Kratky, C , and H. Bernhard. 1984. "Die Cambridge Structural Data Base — ein Informationssystem für stereochemische Fragestellungen." Fakten-Daten-Zitate 1, 6-9. ISO 9354:1989, Textiles — Weave-coding systems and examples. Ge­ neva. Teknisk Leksikon. Vol. 1, Column 261-18. Copenhagen/Oslo: A/S For­ laget for Faglitteratur. Galinski 1994, personal contribution.

Section 1.3 Concept Description 1.3.1 Terminological Definitions BRUNO DE BESSÉ Translated by Juan C. Sager 1 INTRODUCTION

Is there such a thing as a terminological definition? If we make the not unreasonable assumption that there is, what then are its characteristics? How does it differ from a lexicographic definition and an encyclopedic definition! What does it have in common with the other two types of definition? What are the guiding principles for formulating terminological definitions? These questions have no easy answers. Apart from the Pro­ ceedings of the International Colloquium on Terminology: Problèmes de la définition et de la synonymie en terminologie which contains, in particular, a contribution from Sager (1983), very few books or articles have seriously tackled the topic. We shall examine the problem from both a theoretical and a prac­ tical point of view. 2

terminological definition




Lexicography and Terminology

The absence or reference documentation could lead us to con­ clude that terminological definitions do not exist. But this would be a mistake. Although many multilingual scientific and techni­ cal dictionaries omit definitions, most major term banks, such as TERMIUM, include them. In addition to this fact, we ob­ serve that the definitions in these books and databases are different from lexicographic definitions. It is not simply the case that term banks and subject-specific glossaries represent a specialized form of lexicography; there are fundamental differ­ ences both in subject matter and in the methods of deeding with terminological definitions that justify our identifying them with their own form and methodologies,

INFO Lexicography vs. Terminology 1NFB 3:328 SEE

TERMIUM Vol. II, 7.2.2



Lexicography is concerned with words, while terminography is interested in terms. A term is defined as a meaningful unit comprising one word (simple term) or several words (complex term) that represents a single specific concept within a subject field. A clearer distinction between lexicography and termino­ graphy emerges from a comparison of the methodologies. The approach in terminography and more especially in terminology, is onomasiological, i.e., one proceeds from the concept to its linguistic form, the term. On the other hand, in lexicography, the approach is semasiological, proceeding from the word to its meaning or meanings. 2.2


Encyclopedias and Dictionaries

The distinction between lexicographic and terminological collec­ tions is usually made on the basis of the contrast between dic­ tionaries of words and dictionaries of things. Such a distinction is theoretically satisfactory and methodologically useful, but it is often related to or even equated with a division between lan­ guage dictionaries and encyclopedias, as if encyclopedias were another form of dictionary. While it cannot be denied that ency­ clopedias contain explanations of words—among other things, it would be wrong to speak of "encyclopedic definition" as a separate category. It is, of course, true and customary to say that encyclopedias are sum totals and stocks of knowledge. In this context, what might be called a "definition" is really only a summary of knowledge, and obviously not a definition in the sense attributed to the term in lexicography or terminography. Those definitions that do occur in works like the Encyclopedia Britannica or the Grand Dictionnaire Encyclopédique Larousse are therefore terminographic definitions inasmuch as they iden­ tify specialized concepts. There are, however, also cases in encyclopedias where a purely lexicographic definition is fol­ lowed by statements of knowledge and explanations that can be clearly identified as encyclopedic. 2.3


Term and Definition

Rey rightly observes in Terminologie: noms et notions (1979) that: ... the words definition and term are linked by a common char­ acteristic: etymologically they both indicate the fixation of a

encyclopedic definitions

1.3.1 TERMINOLOGICAL DEFINITIONS limit, of an end and its results. At the conceptual level, for a word to deserve the status of a term, it must, as an element of a whole terminological system, be distinguishable from any other such word, i.e., from other terms. The only way of formalizing this system of reciprocal distinctions is by means of the operation known as "definition". The link between definition and term is one of the basic principles of terminology and terminography. The language of science is essentially dependent on definitions, and a greater part of legal discourse consists in defining its own terms more precisely. 2.4

65 terminological system

Terminology Activities INFB 2:327

Terminology and Terminography

A further difference has to be made between terminographic definitions and terminological definitions. Terminographic defi­ nitions aim at describing concepts that belong to a pre-existing system, whereas terminological definitions create concepts, as, for example, occurs in the case of the definition of a circle that creates the concept of "circle". In the first case, the writing of definitions is part of the duty of terminographers, and such work is essentially descriptive. By contrast, terminologists worthy of that name first classify the objects of a subject field before proceeding to name one or several of them. Terminolo­ gical definitions are also formulated by legislators and stan­ dardization experts. Like original creators, or all-powerful mathematicians, they can define concepts and name them as they please. Examples: millboard a generic term for a homogenous board made usually of mixed waste papers on an intermittent board machine in thickness greater than 1 mm (BS 3203:1964) guaranteed minimum pension the amount the Social Security Pensions Act 1975, or the equiva­ lent Northern Ireland legislation, requires to be paid to a retired member of a scheme which is contracted out of the State Earnings Related Pension Scheme (Guide 1992) A terminology, i.e., all the terms belonging to a field, con­ stitutes a real definitional system, as it reflects the structured

I INFO 1 Descriptive & Prescriptive Terminology INFB 4:329



organization of a single well-defined domain. Terms are thus organized into structured systems reflecting a conceptual organi­ zation. The act of defining, be it terminological or terminographic, must be based on conceptual analysis. For both terminologists and terminographers, to define means to describe, delimit, and distinguish concepts. Their definitions create classifi­ cations, hierarchies, and structures. Superficially, a terminographic description has encyclopedic features insofar as it gives preference to information about a thing. Another common trait is that the point of departure for terminological, as well as for encyclopedic, descriptions is extralinguistic, but, in contrast to encyclopedic definitions, the terminological definition ends when it has provided all informa­ tion that enables a concept to be located and distinguished with­ in a conceptual system. In addition, it may have an overriding pedagogic function that requires the listing of supplementary encyclopedic elements irrelevant for the definition itself. When it is intended for didactic purposes, the terminographic defini­ tion may be expanded.

INFO Classification INFB 9:334

SEE Concept Systems 1.4.1:89

Example: Insofar as it is necessary to distinguish these two subclasses of pronouns, by means of an appropriate terminological convention, we can do so by calling nominal-substitutes prononimals and noun-substitutes pronouns. (Lyons 1977:658) 2.5

Terminography and Knowledge Structures

Terminological definitions reflect the culture of the community for which they were written. They are very closely linked to the development of scientific knowledge, ideological structures, and the archeologies of knowledge. Thus, the whale was first defined as a fish before being redefined as a mammal. The sub­ stance of the terminological definition, like that of the lexico­ graphic definition, depends on the type of reader for whom it is written and on his or her needs. Examples: alternative benefit service a period of service with a personal pension or in the State Earn­ ings Related Pension Scheme by an employee who is eligible to be a Member of USS and who has elected not to be such a Member, or who has withdrawn from membership

terminological definition

1.3.1 TERMINOLOGICAL DEFINITIONS year includes a fraction of a year reckoned in days (Guide 1992) The simple "term-definition equation" is, of course, inade­ quate by itself and needs a subject field reference as a third element to provide the link to extra-linguistic reality. It is com­ pulsory that the concept, its definition and its term belong to one subject field. This association to a specific subject field confirms that a concept and a term belong to the same concep­ tual system, while the definition distinguishes between concepts within such a system. More often, and this is not accidental, the reference to a subject field is part of the definition. Examples: branch a path that connects two adjacent nodes and that has no intermediate nodes (ISO 2382-18:1987) impulse the signal that travels along the length of a nerve fibre and is the means by which information is trans­ mitted through the nervous system < in physics > symbol 7; the product of a force F and the time t for which it acts (Concise Science Dictionary 1984) The identification of a subject field and the delimitation of its boundaries are basic issues in both lexicography and terminography. The terminographer must, in addition, understand the rules of classification. Classifications are necessary for structuring knowledge, a process that terminographers may have to assist with, but knowledge structures are not absolute and only reflect a particular interpretation of reality. Nor can they cover all named concepts of a subject field. Even the most rigorous classifications do not represent all items and concepts characteristic of specific social groups that terminographers have to define and record. 3



Principles of Definition

For the terminographer, writing a definition is an operation consisting of determining all the characteristics that uniquely identify the intension of a concept. The final result of this


termdefinition equation




operation is a proposition stating the equivalence between a term (the deflniendum), and all the characteristics that define it. As in lexicography, the definition must apply to the defined term to the exclusion of all other terms.

INFO Intension and Extension INFB 11:339

3.1.1 Equation and Synonymic Paraphrase The terminographer, however, often finds it difficult to observe a number of lexicographic principles. The terminographic defi­ nition is not always an equation. It is not always reciprocal. Very often, we cannot speak of a semantically equivalent para­ phrase, nor of underlying synonymy. This is particularly true of the definition by extension, which enumerates all objects to which the concept applies. Example: planet the planets of the solar system are Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto

definitional equation | INFO,,,] Standard Definitions INFB 12:340

3.1.2 Defining "Thing" and "Concept" The terminological definition is created with reference to the object or idea denoted by the sign and is therefore said to be referential. The definiendum is not the term, but rather the object or idea described, and more precisely, its conceptual re­ presentation. In terminography, definition is therefore not a linguistic process, in contrast to lexicography in which the de­ finiendum is a word that is defined by other words. The lan­ guage of terminological definitions is, therefore, a different kind of metalanguage creating a bridge between linguistic and non-linguistic entities. Yet, the terminographic definition is drafted in natural language and access to concepts and objects occurs through the medium of words. 3.2


Types of Definition

There are several types of terminographic definitions. The need for different forms is explained by the diversity in the structure and organization of the subject fields, which a good definition attempts to reflect in some way. In general, however, a syn­ onym, an antonym or a cross-reference can never be considered

types of definition



a satisfactory substitute for a terminological definition. Equally unsuitable are morpho-semantic definitions, which consist of semantically equivalent structures or paraphrases. Examples: odd parity check a parity check in which the number of ones (or zeros) in a group of binary digits is expected to be odd (Chandor 1987) full text retrieval information retrieval which handles files of text with any word retrievable (rather than just defined key words) (Chandor 1987) decrement a quantity or value used to decrease the magnitude of a variable (Chandor 1987) delay line a transmission line (or circuit) in which signals are deliberately delayed to achieve some specific purpose (Chandor 1987) These definitions, common in lexicography for compounds and derivatives, are explanations of words or terms, but not of concepts. Whereas the logical definition perfectly satisfies the needs of the terminographer and the terminologist, it is not, however, suitable in all subject fields. In terminography, the analytical or intensional definition is unquestionably preferred firstly because it gives the general class to which the defined concept belongs, and secondly, because it either specifies what distinguishes it from other concepts situated in the same class or enumerates all the characteristics of the concept or both. Of­ ten, the terminographer has the choice of several modes of definition. In the following case, the terminological definition identifies the concept both by its substance and by its function because it occurs in a rather general reference work. Example: methionine a sulphur-containing amino-acid, CH3.S-CH2-CH(NH2)-COOH, which must, for man as well as for other animals, be present in the food proteins. Apparently concerned, inter alia, in reactions involving methylation, such as synthesis of adrenaline and creatine (Chambers Technical Dictionary 1961) A definition may be substantial and describe the object by enumerating its properties or only by envisaging its use.

intensional definition



Example: lateral extensometer a special extensometer for measuring the lateral deformation of a photoelastic model in order to determine the sum of the principal stresses, e.g. that of Coker (Holmstrom 1971) The terminographer can also use illustration in order to define. A sub-field such as nuts and bolts lends itself particu­ larly well to illustrations. Sometimes the terminographer exper­ iences a situation where definition is nearly impossible, as can be exemplified by the following definition from the statutes on commercial law: deposit any sum payable by a debtor or hirer by way of deposit or downpayment, or credited or to be credited to him on account of any deposit or down-payment, whether the sum is to be or has been paid to the creditor, or owner or any other person, or is to be or has been discharged by a payment of money or transfer or deliv­ ery of goods or by any other means (Rose 1988:190) 3.3


Characteristics of Definitions

Like the lexicographic definition, the terminographic definition does not have to be exhaustive, but it must reflect the know­ ledge and satisfy the needs of the user of the terminographic product. It must permit a clear differentiation between objects and concepts. It does not have to resort to redundancy, which is sometimes required for the lexicographic definition. By anal­ ogy with lexicography, terminographic definitions usually con­ sist of a single phrase, but there are justified exceptions. Trample: electrical storm a meteorological disturbance in which the air becomes highly charged with electricity. In the presence of clouds this leads to thunderstorms (Chambers Science and Technology 1984) Definitions should not contain the defined term. On the other hand, the root of the term is often the generic term and must be used in the definition for relating the term to its immediate hyperonym.

user needs

Conceptual Relations INFB 10:337



Example: acid clay clay which, when pulped in water, yields hydrogen ions (Cham­ bers Science and Technology 1984) The application of these rules very often raises problems that some terminographers try to overcome by replacing the defi­ nition by a definitional context and by explaining in a note what could not readily be expressed in the definition. Yet, in practice one can find many unsatisfactory definitions in specialized dic­ tionaries and term banks. Examples: roll-call vote a vote carried out by roll call (Curzon 1979) jus pacendi the right of grazing (Curzon 1979) petty jury (US variant: petit jury) twelve "good and lawful" men called by a sheriff to try issues of fect in a criminal charge (Curzon 1979) The first example above is an instance of a tautological definition, i.e., the determining elements of the term itself are used to define the concept. The tautological definition is very closely related to the circular definition, where two concepts are de­ fined each in terms of the other: textile industry branch of industry that produces textiles textile product of the textile industry The definition of jus pacendi above is only a translation of the Latin, and an awkward paraphrase of the correct English grazing rights at that, whereas the third is both archaic and overly specific—not every modern jury is convened by a sher­ iff, nor composed of twelve persons, and certainly not of men alone. Such deficiencies are firstly attributable to terminographers' lack of know-how, but more importantly, these shortcomings are due to a lack of tradition, inadequate theoretical reflection on the subject, and the absence of formal rules and drafting conventions. With respect to definitions, terminography is still

faulty definitions

circular and tautological definitions



in a stage of experimentation. Progress in this area can be made only through increased applied research and empirical evalua­ tions. 3.4

Hybrid Definitions

The distinction between lexicographic and terminographic defi­ nitions does not mean that there is a barrier between the two types of definition. In the absence of experience, tradition and adequate theoretical bases, terminographers are quite content to draw inspiration from lexicography. In return, lexicographers are quite often terminographers without knowing it. Increas­ ingly, as a result of the incorporation of a significant number of specialized terms into general language, even the most ortho­ dox language dictionaries devote considerable space to techni­ cal, scientific, and economic terms, and have to propose termi­ nological or terminographic definitions in order to meet the needs of their users. This is the case with a general dictionary such as the Collins English Dictionary, which, besides giving the meaning of words, identifies a significant number of terms. For example, the entry for reactor identifies a medical and a chemical term besides the general usage of the word: reactor 1. Chem. a substance such as a reagent, that undergoes a reaction. 2. short for nuclear reactor 3. a vessel, esp. one in industrial use, in which a chemical reac­ tion takes place. 4. a coil of low resistance and high inductance that introduces reactance into a circuit. 5. Med. a person sensitive to a particular drug or agent. (Collins English Dictionary 1979) It is, of course, difficult to decide whether a definition, such as the fourth one in this example, specifies a concept or ex­ plains a word. This is a common problem that can be seen clearly in objects, such as plants and animals, which are some­ times listed in general dictionaries with their full Latin nomenclatural name, together with a popular description, and in other cases are only described as a type of plant, etc. With more science and technology being considered part of general knowledge, the terminographic approach is increasingly found even in dictionaries.

hybrid definitions

SEE Chemical Nomenclature 2.2.5:218



Other Issues

Most terminological definitions are written by subject-field spe­ cialists because terminographers, and for even stronger reasons, lexicographers, are not always knowledgeable enough in the field to be able to write appropriate definitions. The assistance of specialists is nearly always indispensable. However, special­ ists will not replace terminographers. In general, they do not lay claim to special terminographic skills, and will willingly cooperate in any terminography work. Unlike lexicographic work, terminographic work is necessarily multidisciplinary. The multilingual or, more precisely, the multicultural, factor is nearly always present in terminographic work. Naturally, terminographers do not "translate" terms, and it is even less appropriate to translate definitions. For each language, the methodology consists of identifying the concept (which may differ from one language to another), then proceeding to des­ cribe it within each culture's conceptual system, and lastly looking for the form of its designation, that is, the term in its appropriate sublanguage. The confrontation between definitions from different cultures permits the declaration of the total or partial equivalence of terms. Even at this level, the terminogra­ phic approach is clearly seen to differ fundamentally from the lexicographic approach. 4

subject field specialists terminographers

multilingual aspect multicultural aspect


Given the impact an appropriate terminographic description can have in artificial intelligence research, the improvement of terminographic methods is highly desirable. They are urgently needed because the quality of some specialized dictionaries is still of a level that was rejected as unacceptable in lexicography many years ago. For some time now, the considerable need for reliable terminographic tools has been apparent and we are currently witnessing the development of computerized tools and methods that are improving the quality of terminography and extending its scope. In the long term, and owing to research undertaken in the area of knowledge modelling, we can foresee the creation of real and coherent "systematic" definitions. One thing is certain: the task ahead in this field is enormous.

SEE Artificial Intelligence Vol. II, 8.4.5




Anon. 1983. "Problèmes de la définition et de la synonymie en terminologie", Actes du Colloque international de terminologie, Université Laval, Quebec: GIRSTERM. Chambers Technical Dictionary. 1961. Edinburgh: Chambers. Chambers Science and Technology Dictionary. 1984. Edinburgh: Chambers. Chandor, Anthony. 1987. The Penguin Dictionary of Computers. London: Penguin Books. Collins English Dictionary. 1979. London: Collins. Concise Science Dictionary. 1984. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Curzon, L.B. 1979. A Dictionary of Law. Plymouth: MacDonald & Evans. British Standard BS 3203:1964. Glossary of Paper— Stationery and Allied Terms. Lon­ don: British Standards Institution. A Guide for Members, 1992. Universities Superannuation Scheme, United Kingdom, December 1992. Holmstrøm, John Edwin, Maurice Fickelson, and Danilo Jejcic. 1971. Trilingual Dictionary for Materials and Structures. Oxford: Pergamon Press. ISO 2382-18:1987: 1987. Information Processing Systems — Vocabulary — Data Processing. Lyons, John. 1977. Semantics. Cambridge; Cambridge University Press. Rey, Alain. 1979. Terminologie, noms et notions. "Que-sais-je?". Paris: PUF. Rose, Francis D. 1989. Blackstone's Statutes on Commercial Law. London: Blackstone Press Ltd. Sager, Juan C 1983. "Definitions in Terminology." Problèmes de la définition et de la synonymie en terminologie. Actes du Colloque international de terminologie. Uni­ versité Laval, Québec, GIRSTERM, p. 113-141.

1.3.2 Frames and the Display of Definitions RICHARD A. STREHLOW 1 INTRODUCTION

This chapter describes a useful way of displaying the structure of definitions graphically in a two-dimensional grid. The pur­ pose of such display is to permit the structural relations within a definition to be rapidly perceived and comprehended. Coher­ ent display of terminological definitions permits clearer analysis and can be useful in improving the efficiency of terminology standardization and other terminology management activities. This method can also be used to compare the differentia used in definitions in two or more languages in order to ensure con­ cept harmonization between two proposed equivalent terms. 2

twodimensional display of definitions


Although the concept of the frame has assumed a different application in artificial intelligence, in one of Peirce's early papers, he applied and developed the concept of what is now called a frame and applied it to definition structuring (Peirce 1933:330). This paper proposes using frames as simple boxes with blanks to be filled in representing the data structure of a definition. This structure offers a readily accessible means of presenting terminological or other data. A terminological frame is based on the notion that a concept is comprised of a set of at­ tributes and consists of slots for the concept name and other attributes, along with the values for these slots. Figure 1 shows the structure on which the examples used in this paper are based.

SEE Artificial Intelligence Vol II, 8.4.5 terminological frame



Term Assigned to a Concept Attribute1 Attribut2 Attribute3

: : :

Value1 Value2 Value3




Figure 1: The Basic Structure of a Terminological Frame 3


The structure of definitions, representing the meanings of words, has occupied thinkers since antiquity. Over time, a list of five predictable elements has emerged: genus, species, differentia, property, and accident. This list provides clear components for inclusion in a frame representing a contemporary definition. Indeed, many definitions are written that include most of these elements. Genus is a general class; species, the selected sub-class; differentia, the distinguishing features that may include pro­ perties viewed as essential characteristics; and accidental properties are cited as useful incidental aspects, i.e., pro­ perties that occur in some individual instances. If a tiger, for example, is defined as "a large carnivorous mammal of the cat family usually having a tawny coat with black stripes", the genus and species are evident {mammal and cat, respectively). The properties of large, carnivorous, and black stripes are properties that together provide differentia­ tion from other similar concepts, whereas the color of the coat is incidental information (in some instances, a tiger is white). From the above we see that the two principal kinds of information may be present in a definition: • Hierarchical information—the genus and species • Differentiating aspects—essential and accidental properties

definitional elements accidental properties

incidental information





Genus Sub-genus (Species) Scientific name Differentia



: : :



cat family Panthera tigris large carnivorous black stripes usually tawny (sometimes white)


Figure 2: Frame Representation of the Definition of "Tiger" At a minimum, these two kinds of information can be effi­ ciently displayed. A frame for such definitions is shown in Figure 2. Representation and display of a definition's structure are closely related to the display of concept structures. Although any of the common display methods used for concept system representation might be used in definition display, they will generally be insufficient and potentially confusing because concept system representation is designed to display relations among discrete concepts rather than the characteristics (i.e., attributes) making up one concept. Although concept system representations do not normally display definitions well, frame representations can be used to demonstrate the characteristics that are used to differentiate among closely related concepts in concept systems. Figures 3 and 4 illustrate this principle based on the example of the family Panthera. Certainly, a zoologist could provide addi­ tional, more scientific distinguishing features, but the informa­ tion included in the frames provides the differentia most fami­ liar to the average cat viewer at the zoo.

hierarchial information

Standard Definitions INFB 12:340





Genus Sub-genus (Species) Scientific name Differentia

: : :



lion mammal cat family Panthera leo large carnivorous tawny color mane mane frequently darker

Figure 3: Frame Representation of the Definition of "Lion"




Genus Sub-genus (Species) Scientific name Differentia



: : :



cat family Panthera pardus large carnivorous black spots usually tawny (sometimes black)

Figure 4: Frame Representation of the Definition of "Leopard" 4


Frames have taken many different forms and been used to represent both hierarchical and differentiating properties. Putnam (1975) proposed a layout that is also potentially useful to the creators of definitions. He specified that a description in a dictionary entry would best include four categories:

definition layout



syntactic markers, semantic markers, stereotypical properties, and extension. These items can be displayed as an organized list, or in the form of a table as shown in Figure 5 (here the extension takes the form of a scientific name). The examples used in this chapter are intended to stimulate the use of imaginative and useful displays of definitions rather than to be viewed as rigid models for definition writing. The essential points are that definitions represent terms and the concepts to which they are assigned, and any display of a definition reflects and represents a structural model of the definition's content. Syntactic markers

Semantic markers

Stereotypical properties


Number noun Concrete

Natural kind Animal Mammal Cat family

large carnivorous Asian origin black stripes usually tawny

Panthera tigris

Figure 5: Table of Markers and Properties REFERENCES

Peirce, Charles Sanders. 1933. Collected Papers, 2. Cambridge and London: Harvard University Press. Putnam, Hillary. 1975. "Mind, Language, and Reality," Vol. 2. London: Cambridge University Press.


In examining the relationship between context and the units of terminological vocabulary, a distinction must be made between term and entry term. The term is the in vivo component of spe­ cialized language; the entry term is the in vitro image of the term that is placed in a work compiling terminological or lex­ icographic data (e.g., a dictionary, vocabulary, or lexicon). As terminologists, we should focus on the in vivo form. This chap­ ter addresses the relationship between terms and the contexts in which they are used. 2



Special Language INFB 5:330 Terminology Collections INFB 1:325


In order to understand the role that contexts play in terminology management, it important to see them within the framework of other basic terminological information. 2.1


The introductory chapters to this book describe the fundamental components of the terminological entry in detail. An under­ standing of terms and terminological units is essential to an understanding of this chapter. 2.2

Term Selection 1.1:13 Term Formation 1.2.1:25


The word object must be understood in its broadest sense: it is anything that can be conceptualized. It thus includes all material things, phenomena, properties, actions, and states that are asso­ ciated with a structured field of human activity. 2.3



Subject Field

In order to be considered a term, the designation of an object must belong to a subject field. No term exists without reference

subject field



to a particular field of activity that is described by a specialized language. There are three ways in which a term may belong to a field. The term may be a linguistic form that exists only within the field of reference. Foint-of-purchase advertising and junk mail advertising, for example, belong specifically to the vocabulary of advertising. The term may have a linguistic form that exists in either general language or in another specialized language but has a different meaning in the field of reference. Thus legibility, which in general language means "the capacity of being read or deciphered", takes on a more precise meaning in advertising: "the capacity of being read or deciphered easily under its condi­ tions of use". Lastly, a term may belong to a field of reference to which it is closely associated. Advertising vocabulary thus includes a number of marketing terms that are related to the advertising function {brand, brand awareness, brand loyalty, bulk discount, cut price, etc.) In order for a term to exist, it must not only have a recog­ nizable form that is lexicalized to at least some minimal extent, but it must also belong specifically to or be closely associated with (classified in) some field of application. 3


field-specific terms

specialized meanings

associated terms

INFO Classification 1NFB 9334


Contexts are important to terminology with respect to the rela­ tionship of a term with its field of application. The context embodies the discourse bearing the term. In general, it includes the sentence in which the term is found, but may sometimes extend over two or three sentences, if not an entire paragraph. It is the presence of conceptual features relevant to the term that determines the extent of the context. The context thus plays a double role: it first provides living proof that the term is used in the field of reference and then allows a conceptual content to be associated with the term being studied. The second role is the more important. It makes it possible to determine the speci­ fic relationship between a term and its subject field through concept identification. For the terminologist, the context is the key to the concept, which in turn constitutes the keystone of the

concept identification



terminologist's work. The three components forming the arch­ way through which terminological analysis must pass are: term + concept + subject field. 3.1

Contextual Analysis

In order to associate term and concept and to identify the rela­ tionship between the two, it is necessary to perform a semantic analysis of the context. This analysis involves recognizing, as borne out by the context, conceptual features or descriptors such as nature, form, matter, cause, effect, goal, subject, man­ ner, time, location, etc. No single context, of course, will provide all of these features. In order for a context to be useful in terminology, it is necessary and sufficient that it create a mental image of the concept that is precise enough to enable the terminologist to recognize the concept when it crops up else­ where in the same field. Let us consider the following example of a context for the term liquidation approach to value taken from the field of busi­ ness valuation: The liquidation approach to value can be generally described as the quantification of the net amount available to business owners on the liquidation of all assets and liabilities. There are four descriptors in this context: 1. Quantification tells us the nature of the valuation approach. 2. Net amount gives the object of valuation. 3. Available to business owners indicates the manner per­ formed. 4. Liquidation of all assets and liabilities specifies the cause forming the basis of calculation. This context gives us a fairly clear mental image of the valuation approach called the liquidation approach to value. 3.2

semantic analysis

contextual descriptors

Types of Contexts

Depending on the quantity and quality of descriptors it contains, a context falls into one of the following three categories: 1. An associative context provides no information about the concept covered by the term, but it does show that the term is used in some specialized language.

associative contexts

1.3.3 TERMS AND CONTEXTS For instance, the following context from a text on weaving merely demonstrates that to tension yarn is a collocation used when discussing weaving, but it provides no added explanatory material that would reveal what kind of function is represented by tensioning yarn.' Each warp yarn ... is carried through the correct opening in the reed to the front of the loom where all the warp yarns, when the threading is completed, are evenly tensioned and tied to the cloth beam apron. (Stout: 317-318) 2. An explicative context creates an approximate image of the concept covered by the term. In the following example of an explicative context, the text used to document the term reed provides valuable information on the nature of the reed (it is an essential part of the loom) and lists some of its primary functions {separates yarns, determines cloth width, sets as a beater). It does not define the reed or describe what it looks like or tell us what it is made out of, but it does provide much more information than the associative context in the previous example. Essential parts of the loom include the ... reed, which keeps the warp yarns separated, helps to determine cloth width, and sets as a beater .... (Stout: 317-318) 3. A defining context contains descriptors in sufficient quantity and quality to convey a very clear image of the concept cov­ ered by the term, from which a true definition could be readily inferred. The first sentence of the following example can be extracted from the text and used as a defining context. Weaving is a method of producing cloth by interlacing two or more sets of yarns, at least one warp and one filling set, at right angles to each other. The 'warp' is also called 'ends'; and the 'filling' is also called 'picks', or 'weft'. The warp runs... (Stout: 317-318) 3.3


explicative contexts

defining contexts

Definition and Defining Context

A defining context must not be confused with a definition. The latter is a metalinguistic form, an artificial statement that is neither integrated into any discourse nor related to any instance of communication. The use of a definition in terminological re-

actual communication



search is only possible if the concept formulated metalinguistically matches that expressed in the context of an actual com­ munication. 3.4

The Role of Context

3.4.1 Establishing Terminological Usage Since terms actually exist only in instances of specialized dis­ course, contexts are of capital importance in terminological research. They establish the link between the term and the field in which it is used. It is thus from contexts that the vocabulary that forms the basis of all terminological research is drawn, since it is in the context that we can recognize the subject field specificity of a term (in meaning and possibly also in form) or the degree to which a term belonging to another field is associ­ ated with the subject field. For instance, how often the market­ ing term zoning is used in specialized contexts in advertising will determine whether the term is also part of the vocabulary of advertising—either through sheer frequency of use or by its impact on marketing strategy.

subject field specificity

3.4.2 Associating Term and Concept Once terminological usage has been established, the association between a term and its concept will be achieved primarily through conceptual analysis of contexts. This analysis will gov­ ern the way in which concepts correspond in bilingual or multi­ lingual terminology. Indeed, the initial matching is not between terms, but between the concepts labelled by terms. The equiv­ alence of terms cannot be established until it is reasonably cer­ tain that a source-language concept is essentially the same as a target-language concept. Often, rather than being totally equivalent, concepts in dif­ ferent languages correspond only partially according to various logical relations: generic-specific, abstract-concrete, causeeffect, etc. Where partial correspondence occurs, it is essential to determine the exact extent to which concepts correspond, for this in turn determines the extent to which the source-language term can be rendered by the target-language term. An example will make this clear. The English term peak listening period designates the hours of maximum radio audi­ ence. In contrast, the corresponding French term heures de

bilingual & multilingual terminology

concept correspondence

equivalent directionality


1.3.3 TERMS AND CONTEXTS pointe designates the hours when radio audience or television viewership peaks. Thus the concept is broader in French than in English. Although heures de pointe is generally a safe trans­ lation for peak listening period, the reverse is far less sure. The French-to-English translator faced with heures de pointe needs to know whether radio or television is involved before an Eng­ lish equivalent can be chosen. 3.5

Choosing Contexts

The importance of contexts in all terminological research dic­ tates that terminologists exercise judicious care in choosing documents to be scanned. It is, of course, impossible to scan everything for lack of time and money. The following criteria can help in selecting a bibliography for terminological research. • The first criterion is how representative a text is. The docu­ ment to be scanned should reflect usage in the specialized field as judged by domain experts. • The second criterion is the nature of the publication, which largely determines the meaningfulness of the contexts it con­ tains. Textbooks, handbooks, monographs, and service man­ uals are often excellent sources that provide explicit infor­ mation about concepts and terms, as are industry standards and other authoritative texts. Examination of a random sam­ pling of pages in a publication under consideration can help determine how useful it could be for terminological re­ search. • A third and final criterion is a minimal level of presentability and reliability. As a rule, poorly written texts, filled with typing errors and bad grammar, provide a shaky basis for drafting valid terminological records. Publications of a lexicographic nature (dictionaries) or of a terminological nature (vocabularies and lexicons) should mainly serve as a countercheck, firstly, to avoid duplicating work already done, and secondly, to ensure that the results of the proposed research fit well into the subject-field vocabulary as a whole. This type of publication must not, however, serve to establish the vocabulary to be researched, which should take its points of reference from in vivo communications.

scanning texts bibliography selection criteria

SEE Descriptive Terminology 2.1.4:184


86 4


Despite the obvious advantages of providing contexts in termi­ nological entries, the process of entering them is timeconsuming and expensive. One way to access information quickly and efficiently is to extract contexts from online materials, thus eliminating the need to rekey texts. Biblio­ graphic databases with abstracts of articles from numerous periodicals are readily available online. Dictionaries, encyclo­ pedia and full-text databases are distributed on CD-ROM. Large corporations produce, exchange, store and manage an increas­ ing volume of textual information in electronic form. Optical character recognition has reached a point where almost any printed text can be reliably converted into machine-processable form. Citing contexts by cutting and pasting from electronic media eliminates the need to copy information into the term record. The potential savings in secretarial and revision time is often overstated. A more important saving can result, however, when the most important contexts are copied to working records and the full texts of the working file are indexed on an on-going basis so that explanatory citations, possibly containing a number of relevant terms, remain readily available to the terminologist. The source can then be referenced and the context requoted in a later related record. It is through such modest means that practicing terminologists can automate their work. The question remains, however, whether the selection of ter­ minological contexts can be automated using the kind of con­ cordance software that has proven extremely useful in the production of lexicographical works. The fact remains that lexi­ cography deals with words, which are readily recognizable to computer search routines, whereas terminological analysis re­ quires the identification not only of terms in context, but also of the concepts they represent and their positions in their res­ pective subject fields. Thus configuring computers to scan texts and select optimum contextual segments requires duplicating the human intuition that is normally brought to bear on context selection. Although computer aids for human context selection may be useful for the time being, additional research is required before fully automatic context recognition and retrieval will become a readily available reality.

online resources

time savings

SEE Automated Terminology Compilation Vol. II 8.4.2

133 5



A philosophical disagreement exists among terminologists as to whether contexts are fundamentally concept-related information or term-related in nature. One view holds that the primary func­ tion of contexts is to orient a concept and its designated termi­ nological unit(s) to and within a specific subject field. This view is strongly supported in psychology and, obviously, re­ flects the approach taken in this article. The second view is that contexts provide term-related information in the form of collo­ cational and other discourse-related features. There is clearly no disputing the fact that contexts do indeed illustrate this kind of knowledge as well. Nevertheless, it remains our contention that the in vivo orientation of the term to the concept afforded by the context is the primary function of the context, and that its discourse-related aspects are only useful once the orientation of the context to the subject field has been fully established. 6


context function


In conclusion, it is important to remember that the close rela­ tionship between a term and its field of use makes it imperative for the subject-field practitioner to participate in terminological research. Domain experts, as they are sometimes called, should be competent professionals, recognized as authorities in their fields. They provide the oral counterpart that completes and vitalizes written contexts. In particular, experts should help se­ lect the texts to be scanned and review the records written by the terminologist in order to check that the term-concept rela­ tion is correct for each language. A terminology research team should not be composed exclu­ sively of either terminologists or domain experts. A kind of symbiosis must develop between these two kinds of specialists. The terminologist's work attests to the linguistic validity of the data; the domain expert's knowledge guarantees that the re­ search stays in line with subject-field reality.

subject experts

research teams


Stout, Evelyn E. 1970. Introduction to Textiles. New York: John Wiley and Sons.

Section 1.4 Concept Systems 1.4.1 Representation of Concept Systems SUE ELLEN WRIGHT 1


Terminologists have long recognized the practicality of representing concept systems using graphic conventions to illustrate the position and valence of concepts and their assigned terms within systems of concepts. Tree diagrams, bracket diagrams, and field diagrams, charts, thesaurus-style lists, plus a wide variety of variations on these basic models are familiar throughout the literature (Felber 1984; Picht and Draskau 1985). Basic forms of representation remain valuable where a work group (e.g., a terminology committee) has a need to represent simple relationships in a fairly focussed subject area (see Figures 1 & 2). With respect to these figures, it is important to

Figure 1: Tree Diagram for Generic Concept System

graphic representations



Figure 2: Bracket Diagram for a Partitive Concept System note that although it is customary to represent terms in concept systems by using the singular, the examples shown here include several plurals. This reflects the fact that in the system shown, certain objects (bolts, rivets, cushion segments, etc.) occur in plural number in conjunction with items that usually occur in singular number (pressure plate, diaphragm spring). No specific format is currently prescribed for sequential relationships, but lists and flow charts are commonly used to represent these systems (see Figures 3 & 4). Although not widely discussed by terminologists, flow charts provide an add­ ed dimension in that they effectively provide conventional re­ presentation of operations and events. Associative (sometimes called pragmatic) systems, because of the unpredictable nature of the thematic relations they portray, have not been conven­ tionalized and are illustrated in various ways, depending on the ingenuity of the terminologist (see Figure 5). 2

sequential relationships


Although the representation of uncomplicated systems is useful for basic terminology management, terminologists have for some time recognized the drawbacks of these simple systems because they enable the user to treat only one basic concept system at a time, whereas it is the nature of things in the real

conceptual planes



Figure 3: Sequential Concept System world that concepts are related to other concepts on numerous planes of reference. For instance, in manufacturing engineering, a component can be viewed in terms of its position in a func­ tional hierarchy, its material properties, its location in a man­ ufacturing sequence, its partitive relationships, its position in a cost structure, etc. Only a system of representation that would enable the user to view these relationships simultaneously or within a short temporal sequence is capable of providing even a semi-adequate representation of these complex relationships. 2.1

Representation of a Single Plane

Numerous writers have developed or discussed methods for representing multiple concept systems (frequently called multidimensional or multifaceted systems). When complex multi­ dimensional systems are represented on-screen, the primary mechanism for accommodating complexity has generally

SEE Multidimensionality 1.4.3:119 1.4.4:133



Figure 4: Functional Sequence (Flow Chart)



Figure 5: Associative Concept System, Materials involved the use of a very large screen on which different dimensions can be viewed by scrolling through extended seg­ ments of the screen. Despite the sophistication and apparent success of such programs, it is nonetheless important to note that they are still, for the most part, working with two dimen­ sions on the computer screen, even as earlier systems operated with two dimensions on paper. This predicament with respect to the constraints posed by two-dimensional space is reminiscent of Abbott's Flatland, a mythical universe confined to a single plane, where the inhabi­ tants are themselves flat geometric shapes and cannot perceive the third dimension. In such an environment, the only way a sphere, for instance, could be recognized would be if it were to pass through the plane of Flatland. The experience of the Flatlanders will be "that of a circular obstacle gradually expanding or growing, and then contracting, and they will attribute to growth in time what the external observer in three dimensions assigns to motion in the third dimension" (Abbott 1950: v).

three dimensional space

94 2.2


Even as the Flatlanders must utilize time to represent the third dimension, so must terminologists integrate time, color (also utilized to good effect by the Flatlanders), and possibly curved lines to express the incidence of multidimensionality. Multidimensionality has been represented on-screen by: • Increasing screen size to accommodate multiple systems over a greater viewing area, as noted above • Representing different sub-systems in different colors or connected by different colored lines • Employing hypertext capability to click on any given node in one concept system in order to move to another screen to display textual or graphic material representing additional concept systems that include the same concept (thus intro­ ducing interactive time capability as an expression of multidimensionality) (Shreve 1993) • Formatted lists based on self-generating hierarchies (Quist 1993) In this book, without the use of color or some other means of overlaying multiple systems within the confines of this arti­ cle, such as the use of transparent mylar, it is impossible to demonstrate a fourth possible solution. In Computer Aided De­ sign and Manufacturing systems (CAD-CAM), different layers within a multidimensional system are superimposed one over the other, as represented by different colored planes displayed on the computer screen. The user can choose to remain on a single plane, display one or more planes at the same time, or move the level of current activity from one plane to the other. The implementation of this sort of layering in a terminology database management system would allow the user to view the simultaneity of multidimensional relationships without resorting to the time-dependent hypertext mode, in which probably only one plane would be viewed at a time. Another option along these same lines would be to develop a means for generating multidimensional concept system repre­ sentation using graphing techniques borrowed from wire and finite element modelling, where wire grids, the principle of perspective, and subtle color shadings are all integrated to

representing multidimensionality SEE

Concept Analysis 1.4.2:98

multilayered planes

INFO Hypertext INFB 13:341

finite element modelling



Figure 6: Multidimensional Modelling create the illusion of multidimensional planes superimposed on an apparent three-dimensional grid (which is nonetheless printed or displayed on a two-dimensional sheet of paper or computer screen). Unfortunately, the example shown in Figure 6 suffers from the loss of its vivid colors in this reproduction. 2.3

Representation Using Data Elements

In many traditional databases, however, one does not even enjoy the luxury of two-dimensional space in which to pro­ duce a graphic representation of a concept system. In a sense, such databases, although they certainly may incorporate two dimensions in the form of relational tables, nevertheless occupy a kind of abstract monodimensional space where one can only describe three (or even two) dimensional relation­ ships, but they are impossible to display. The deficiency here is attributable to the fact that these systems are not only incap­ able of graphic representation, they also lack the formatting

monodimensional space



Figure 7: "Monodimensional" Database Representation features found in standard word processing or print environ­ ments. Even if a non-graphic system offers the added dimension of color, color has never been standardized as a distinguishing feature in concept systems. Due to these limitations, when using any database that is not directly linked to graphics display capability, one must resort to describing relations within systems using the appropriate data element names, such as superordinate concept, subordinate concept, coordinate concept. Levels of abstraction must either be inferred via relational sequence or explicitly indicated by the inclusion of numbers to show data element repeatability and the level of abstraction (see Figure 7). Obviously, the explicit numbering system used in Figure 7 is far less user-friendly than the graphic systems displayed ear­ lier in the paper; it is even less useful than the indented lists that can be generated in even the simplest word processor. This sort of notation is critical, however, not just for representing concept systems in non-graphics-oriented database structures, but also for adding explicit information on concept relation for exchange purposes. Indeed, these descriptive markers can be

INFO Conceptual Relations INFB 10:337

SEE Terminology Interchange Vol. II, 8.1.5 Data Categories Vol. II, 8.1.2



used to express concept relations when converting one type of concept system representation to another using the MachineReadable Terminology Interchange Format (MAKTIF, ISO 12200; ISO 12620). 3


The recognition and representation of multidimensional concept systems in terminology database systems or in interactive con­ junction with such systems provides terminologists and know­ ledge engineers with excellent tools for evaluating relations among concepts in their respective systems. System designers would be well advised to explore existing techniques offered by object-oriented programming, finite element modeling, and CAD-CAM data structures in order to utilize a full range of resources for representing complex interactive systems. Despite continuing achievements in rendering concept systems with more and more graphic detail and flexibility, the differences that exist between methodologies and platforms will nonetheless dictate that developers provide capability for expressing rela­ tions between individual concepts in totally explicit descriptive form in order to facilitate the conversion of information from one database environment to another.

system design options

REFERENCES Abbott, Edwin. 1950. Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. Felber, Helmut. 1984. Terminology Manual. Paris: UNESCO/Infoterm. ISO 12200. 1997. Terminology—Computer Applications—Machine-Readable Terminology Interchange Format (MARTIF) ISO 12620. 1997. Terminology—Computer Applications—Data Categories Picht, Heribert, and Jennifer Draskau. 1985. Terminology: an Introduction. Surrey: The Department of Linguistic and International Studies. Quist, Christian. 1993. "Knowledge Management in the Field of Terminology: Develop­ ment of a PC Application Program." TKE '93: Terminology and Knowledge Engineering. Klaus-Dirk Schmitz, ed. Frankfurt: INDEKS Verlag, 375-383. Shreve, Greg M. 1993. "Part E, Form and Style for ASTM Standards: A Model for Accessing Computerized Terminology Standards Databases." Richard A. Strehlow and Sue Ellen Wright, Eds. Standardizing Terminology for Better Communication: Practice, Applied Theory, and Results, ASTM STP 1166. Philadelphia: ASTM.

1.4.2 Systematic Concept Analysis within a Knowledge-Based Approach to Terminology INGRID MEYER, KAREN ECK, AND DOUGLAS SKUCE 1


For the purpose of this article, we will use the term knowledge-based in two different but complementary senses: (1) the general sense of based on subject-field knowledge, and (2) a somewhat more technical sense of encoded as a knowledge base. The first sense will be fairly obvious to terminologists and other language professionals involved in the description of specialized concepts. (When we refer to terminologists, we mean any language professional involved in describing special­ ized lexical items, not just so-called "professional" termino­ logists.) As they know only too well, any serious terminology processing involves acquiring a certain degree of knowledge about the subject field in which the terminology is used, since terms cannot be studied in isolation from the concepts they denote. As we have discussed in more detail elsewhere (Meyer and Skuce 1992 and Meyer 1993), the acquisition of subjectfield knowledge permeates virtually every aspect of terminology management, making it an activity that is highly know­ ledge-based in the first sense cited above, which will provide the primary focus for this article. To understand our second sense of knowledge-based, we need to recognize that while the final results of terminology research may be based on knowledge, they are not systemati­ cally encoded as knowledge. Rather, most of the subject-field knowledge so laboriously acquired by the terminologist unfortu­ nately stays where it was first stored, namely in the terminologist's head. Only fragments of it are retained in definitions or examples, a phenomenon that has been explored in some detail by Kukulska-Hulme (1990). This is very unfortunate for many of the language professionals (e.g., translators and technical

subject-field knowledge


1.4.2 SYSTEMATIC CONCEPT ANALYSIS writers) who, when they consult term banks or specialized dic­ tionaries, would often greatly welcome subject-field knowledge in order to understand and produce specialized texts more cor­ rectly. It is also unfortunate for those who are not language profes­ sionals (e.g., subject-field learners, information management staff), but who might want to use terms as "access points to knowledge" (Kukulska-Hulme 1992:187). For these reasons, we and an increasing number of terminology researchers have proposed that the next generation of terminological repositories contain a richer and more systematically structured knowledge component than do conventional term banks and specialized dictionaries. In our view, a promising environment for repre­ senting and retrieving such knowledge is what Artificial Intelli­ gence researchers call a knowledge base. This sense of knowledge-based (i.e., encoded as a knowledge base) will provide an important secondary focus for this article. Explained very simply, a knowledge base is a highly struc­ tured repository of knowledge that makes explicit the attributes of individual concepts, as well as the various relations that exist among concepts, linking them into systems. Knowledge, how­ ever, is a slippery commodity. In the words of Hayes-Roth (1987:293), it "does not come off the shelf, prepackaged, ready for use. On the contrary, knowledge is the word used to des­ cribe a variety of fragmentary bits of understanding...." In response to the difficulties of developing methods and support­ ing technologies for encoding knowledge, a subfield of Artifi­ cial Intelligence called Knowledge Engineering has emerged in recent years. While knowledge engineers are primarily con­ cerned with encoding knowledge for subsequent use by a ma­ chine, and terminologists (at least at present) are mainly con­ cerned with serving humans, the work of the terminologist and the knowledge engineer are closely related through one funda­ mental shared interest: the systematic analysis of specialized concepts. Concept analysis, therefore, will be at the heart of this arti­ cle, which treats the approach to concept analysis that we have developed for our own research and that involves encoding knowledge within a knowledge base. While our approach, for the most part, is fairly generic and consistent with a good part


information retrieval

knowledge engineering

knowledge engineering tools



of the terminology literature, certain aspects are further sharp­ ened as required by our technology. We will outline some of the practical applications of concept analysis for terminology management and propose that the results of concept analysis are increasingly reflected in term banks and dictionaries, an encour­ aging trend in the direction of achieving a knowledge-based approach in the second sense described above. We will give readers an idea of the technology available today for supporting both the process and product of concept analysis within a knowledge base. The particular technology that will serve as an example is a knowledge engineering tool called CODE, which we have been using for over three years to build terminological knowledge bases for a variety of subject fields. As mentioned above, it is the first, very general sense of knowledge-based, namely that of based on subject-field knowledge, that will be our primary focus. Therefore, we hope that this article will be of interest to persons concerned with enhanc­ ing their concept analysis techniques within a traditional termi­ nology environment, and for teachers of terminology and re­ lated fields (e.g., technical writing and translation) who wish to present concept analysis within their curriculum. However, our secondary focus on the other sense of knowledge-based, namely encoded within a knowledge base, should also make this article relevant for the growing number of people involved in con­ structing knowledge-based systems, as well as for those in­ volved in more traditional terminology management who are interested in getting an overview of a promising new direction for the field. 2



The key role of the concept in terminology management has been recognized at least since Wüster, who proclaimed that "all modern work on the problems of terminology takes as its start­ ing point the concept itself" (Wüster 1968:xii). Despite differ­ ent schools of thought, there is reasonable agreement in both terminology and knowledge engineering that one can usefully describe a concept in terms of what terminology researchers usually call characteristics, and knowledge engineers frequently


1.4.2 SYSTEMATIC CONCEPT ANALYSIS speak of as attributes and properties. A number of important aspects of characteristics are described below. A set of characteristics represents one's knowledge about a concept: the more characteristics one can attach to the concept, the more knowledge one has about it. The sum of all the char­ acteristics of a concept is traditionally called its intension, while the collection of objects to which a concept refers is called its extension. A concept having many characteristics is said to have a broad intension; consequently, its extension is narrow, as it can refer to only a limited number of objects. On the other hand, a concept having few characteristics is said to have a narrow intension, and a broad extension. Explained another way, when concepts are arranged in a generic-specific hierarchy (described in Section 3), the lower in the hierarchy the concept, the broader its intension becomes (e.g., table has a broader intension than furniture, while coffee table in turn has a broader intension than table). The characteristic is often discussed in terminology literature as though it were a single entity. For example, Picht and Draskau (1985:47) provide the following characteristics for the concept table: (a) wooden, (b) round, (c) 70 cm high. Within a knowledge base, however, it is more useful to encode the characteristic as a two-component entity: the characteristic name and the characteristic value (sometimes called the slot and the filler in knowledge engineering). In Picht and Draskau's ex­ ample, it is the characteristic values that are provided; the reader is left to infer the names. As two-component entities, these characteristics could be represented as: material: wooden surface shape: round height: 70 cm Both the names and values of characteristics can be concepts in their own right. Of particular interest to terminology, they may often denote specialized concepts. For example, Table 1 illustrates various characteristics of the concept CD-ROM. While some of the names (e.g., diameter) and values (e.g., 5.25 inches) refer to fairly general concepts outside the subject field of optical storage, others (e.g., error correction code,


Intension and Extension INFB 11:339

components of characteristics

characteristics as concepts



Table 1: Characteristics of CD-ROM: Name and Value Characteristic Name

Characteristic Wue

degree of writability


encoding method


error correction code

LECC (layered error correction code)

physical standard

Yellow Book


5.25 inches

LECC, Yellow Book) correspond to specialized terms that should have terminological descriptions of their own. Characteristics can be classified according to the type of relation that exists between the characteristic and the concept it describes. While no consensus on a complete typology of characteristics has yet emerged within the terminology or knowledge engineering literature, there does seem to be sub­ stantial agreement on at least two categories (Nirenburg et al. 1988), namely attributes and relations. Attributes are charac­ teristics that are inherent to the concept being described, and that do not involve a relation to other concepts: for example, the concept fax machine could have the attributes HEIGHT: 30

types of characteristics attributes

cm, WEIGHT: 20 kg.

Relations, on the other hand, are characteristics that provide information about other concepts to which the concept in ques­ tion is related: for example, the concept fax machine could be described in terms of the relations PART: input tray, OUTPUT: fax. A third type of characteristic that is very important in terminology, but whose place in a typology of characteristics is still unclear, is that of function (sometimes called purpose): for example, the concept fax machine is describable in terms of the characteristic FUNCTION: to send and receive faxes.





Among the types of characteristics that concepts may have, relations play a very important role in terminology management because they are fundamental to understanding how concepts within a subject field are interlinked, which in turn is crucial to the process of acquiring subject-field knowledge. 3.1 Types of Relations For establishing concept systems, it is useful to classify rela­ tions into two broad types: hierarchical and non-hierarchical. Explained very simply, hierarchical relations are based on superordination and subordination between two concepts. Two types of hierarchical relation are particularly important for terminology. A generic-specific relation between two concepts involves a generic concept as the superordinate, and a specific concept as the subordinate (e.g., furniture—table). A specific concept may in turn be viewed as a generic concept to another specific (e.g., table—coffee table), and so on. A meronymic (or part-whole) relation between two concepts, on the other hand, involves a comprehensive concept as the superordinate, and a partitive concept as the subordinate (e.g., fax machine—input tray). The partitive concept may in turn be viewed as a comprehensive concept to another partitive. Both hierarchical and meronymic relations involve concepts at the same "level" of the hierarchy (i.e., they share a common generic or comprehensive concept); such concepts are often called coordinate concepts. For example, table and chair, which are both kinds of furniture, are coordinate concepts with­ in a generic-specific hierarchy, while input tray and paper guide, which are both parts of a fax machine, are co-ordinate concepts within a meronymic hierarchy. While hierarchical relations have been studied in great depth in numerous fields, the same is not true of non-hierarchical relations, for which no definitive classification exists. Sager (1990:35) provides a lengthy list of possibilities, including: cause—effect (e.g., explosion—fallout) process—product (e.g., weaving—cloth) process—method (e.g., storage—freeze-dry)

concept linkage


Conceptual Relations INFB 10:337

part-whole relations

coordinate concepts

nonhierarchical relations



activity—place (e.g., coalmining—coalmine) object—operation (e.g., drill bit—drilling) object—form (e.g., book—paperback) 3.2

Inheritance within the Generic-Specific Relation

In terminology as well as knowledge engineering, the ge­ intensional neric-specific relation is the one most commonly used to struc­ relations ture a concept system. This relation is characterized by a cer­ tain degree of correspondence between the intensions of a generic concept and its specific concepts: the specific concepts will always differ from the generic concept by having at least one more characteristic than the generic, or alternatively, by having at least one characteristic value that is more specialized than that of the generic. For this reason, the relation is often expressed linguistically as "X is a Y", or "X is a kind of Y". In other words, "X has all the characteristics that Y has, plus at least one additional or specialized one". Another way of expressing this idea is to say that "Y inherits all of X's charac­ teristics, and also adds or specializes at least one". Table 2 shows that the concept CD-ROM has inherited cer­ inherited tain characteristics from its generic concept, compact disk, characteristics which in turn has inherited characteristics from optical disk. Some of the characteristic values have remained the same, while others have been modified. For example, the character­ istic PHYSICAL FORM: disk does not change as it inherits from one level to another in this hierarchy. However, optical disk's characteristic ENCODING METHOD: digital or analog has been modified to ENCODING METHOD: digital for compact disk. It can also be seen that a new characteristic, that of STANDARD: one of Red Book, Yellow Book, Green Book, Orange Book, is added at the level of compact disk. 3.3

Representing Concept Systems

It is extremely useful for anyone acquiring subject-field knowl­ edge to have access to a representation of the concept system. In effect, such a representation can be seen as a conceptual "map" of the subject field, and such conceptual maps have been found to be very useful by educational psychologists studying

conceptual maps



Table 2: Inheritance, Specialization, and the Addition of Values for Characteristics in a Generic-Specific Hierarchy Characteristic name

Characteristic value


optical, disk

compact disk


physical form





3.5, 4.72, 5.25, 8, 12, or 14 inches

4.72 inches

4.72 inches

degree of writability

one of read-only, write-once, erasable

one of read­ only, writeonce, erasable


encoding method

digital or analog



storage capacity

up to 10 GB

up to 600 MB

up to 600 MB


one or both of audio, textual data

one or both of audio, textual data

audio and tex­ tual data, or textual data only

one of Red Book, Yellow Book, Green Book, Orange Book

Yellow Book


ways in which expert knowledge can be transmitted to non­ experts (Sowa 1992). In our view, it is therefore very unfor­ tunate that representations of concept systems are still quite rare in specialized dictionaries and terminological databases. One common way of representing a concept system is the tree dia­ gram as shown in Figure 1.



Figure 1: Tree Diagram from the CODE System (Arrows point to generic concepts; 's' indicates a generic-specific relation.) Real concept systems, of course, are normally more complex than the "neat-and-tidy" tree structures found in terminology textbooks. Some areas of a knowledge structure may be more like a very tangled web than like a tree, since some concepts may have more than one generic concept, leading to the com­ plex phenomenon of multiple inheritance, which is beyond the scope of this introductory article. As the article by L. Bowker in this book explains in detail, a very common source of com­ plexity within concept systems is multidimensionality, a pheno­ menon that occurs when an object can be classified according to more than one characteristic. 4


While most terminologists do not currently conduct concept analysis as systematically as we have proposed above, they nonetheless must carry it out somehow, whether in their heads or assisted by informal notes. This is because the most difficult problems of terminology processing could otherwise not be ade­ quately resolved. Some of these problems are outlined below.

system complexity SEE Multidimensionality 1.4.4:133



Preparing Term Lists

When beginning research on a new field, a terminologist will typically scan various kinds of documentation in order to pre­ pare a preliminary list of terms. The clearer the terminologist's understanding of the key concepts and concept relations within the field, the easier it will be to detect inappropriate terms, as the attributes and relations of the concepts they denote will be inconsistent with those of the related concepts in the system. Good concept analysis will also sensitize the terminologist to areas in the concept system where terms may still be missing. By comparing a list of characteristics for very similar con­ cepts, the terminologist can verify whether or not the terms in question are synonyms. If they are not, the existing characteris­ tics may give an idea of how "far apart" the terms are (i.e., perhaps they are quasi-synonyms). 4.2 Communicating with Subject-field Experts and Colleagues Collaboration with subject-field experts is crucial to the success of any terminology project. Collaboration is enhanced (some might say only possible) when terminologists do "conceptual homework" before their meetings with the expert, for example by establishing a preliminary representation of a concept system so as to provide a common basis for discussion, by identifying problematic areas in a concept system in order to focus ques­ tions—i.e., by acquiring enough subject-field knowledge before each meeting to maintain credibility with the expert. 4.3

missing terms


SEE 3 Do's and Don'ts 2.2.4:217

Constructing or Selecting Definitions

In order to construct the most common type of terminological definition, i.e., the intensional (generic-specific) definition, it is essential to know the concept's generic concept (denoted by the genus in the definition), its coordinates, and the charac­ teristics that best differentiate the concept from its coordinates (denoted by the differentia in the definition). When definitions are extracted from texts instead of hand-crafted, the same knowledge will provide the terminologist with a basis for select­ ing the best definition or for modifying an extracted definition slightly when necessary (e.g., to ensure consistency between the definitions of coordinate concepts).

SEE Definitions 1.2.2:63 genus differentia

108 4.4

PRINCIPLES OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT Establishing Interlingual Equivalence

As described in some detail in Cole 1987 and Wright 1993, bilingual terminology involves comparing the characteristics of the concept denoted by a source-language term, and those of the candidate concept(s) in the target language(s). Clearly, terminology management must be based on subjectfield knowledge. As we argued earlier, it would also be useful if it were encoded as knowledge, and a number of very encour­ aging signs indicate that terminology is moving steadily in this direction. For example, a growing number of specialized dictio­ naries and term banks are adopting a conceptual, rather than an alphabetical, organization for their entries, such as the Dictionary of Information Science and Technology, which links each term description to an extensive (19-page) hierarchical descrip­ tion of the various subfields (and their subfields) covered in the dictionary. In some cases, one even finds graphical representa­ tions of concept systems, for example, the published vocabular­ ies of the Centre for Technical Terminology in Finland, in which the terminological descriptions are richly interspersed with concept system diagrams. These promising developments, however, have one funda­ mental limitation: the attempt to encode the results of concept analysis is being made in media, namely conventional databases or paper-based books, that cannot adequately support the funda­ mental complexity of knowledge structures alluded to above. For this, terminologists need a new kind of working environ­ ment, one that is specifically designed to facilitate both the ac­ quisition and encoding of large and complex knowledge struc­ tures. 5


CODE (Conceptually Oriented Description Environment) is a knowledge-management system— a tool not only for storing knowledge in and retrieving knowledge from a knowledge base, but also for supporting the various concept analysis activities that produce the knowledge base in the first place. Developed at the Artificial Intelligence Lab of the University of Ottawa, Canada, under the direction of Douglas Skuce, CODE has been

conceptual organization SEE Terminological Dictionaries Vol. II,8.2.1

conventional media



used in a number of terminology projects involving the subject fields of typesetting, economics, hypertext, lasers, and optical disks.

knowledge management


Terminological Knowledge Bases

Our terminology activities with CODE involve constructing a terminological knowledge base (TKB), which is essentially a knowledge base in the Artificial Intelligence sense of the term, containing highly structured information about the attributes and relations of concepts. However, it is richer than typical know­ ledge bases in that it has a linguistic component as well, which essentially consists of the various types of strictly linguistic information that one finds in conventional term banks (e.g., grammatical features, equivalents in other languages, usage restrictions). 5.2

linguistic information


CODE'S user interface centers around browsers, which provide various ways of displaying knowledge in a non-linear (i.e., hypertext-like) fashion. The basic units of knowledge are con­ cepts, characteristics, and facets. (Facets offer type-related information about characteristics, such as, in the case of the CD-ROM, reference, status, etc.) The principal browser types, as well as associated features for supporting concept analysis, are explained and illustrated in Figure 2. Graphical browsers, which may be created for the entire concept system or selected parts, provide an overview of the knowledge structures in tree-diagram form (though not re­ stricted to the simple "textbook" examples mentioned above; graphs can be quite complex, showing multiple inheritance as well as multidimensionality). As with all browsers, graphs can be used simply for viewing the knowledge structure, or for adding and editing knowledge. Nodes (rectangles) on a graph represent concepts, while links (arrowed lines) represent rela­ tions. Each link can be labelled with the name of the relation, which may be hierarchical or non-hierarchical; both types may be shown on the same graph. A small subset of the concept net­ work for optical disks is illustrated in Figure 2. Figure 3 shows

INFO Hypertext INFB 13:341

graphical browsers



Figure 2: CODE Graphical Browser Showing Concepts with Generic-Specific (S), Meronymic (Part), and Non-hierarchical (Device) Links another useful way in which the graph can be used, namely to show for a selected concept (e.g., CD-ROM, displayed in the middle) all other related concepts in the knowledge base (ex­ cluding generic and specific concepts). Links are labelled with the relation names, outside nodes with relation values. Textual browsers present concepts, characteristics, and facets in hierarchical or alphabetical lists. Figure 4 shows a hierarchi­ cal list of concepts, with two collapsed subtrees indicated by "- + ". As well as working independently, browsers may also be driven off another browser. For example, in Figure 5, a brows­ er containing a list of concepts is combined with two other browsers, a characteristics browser and a facets browser. When a concept is selected in the left-hand column, its characteristics are then shown in the middle column, and the facets of the

textual browsers



Figure 3: Graph Showing All Non-Generic-Specific Relations between the Concept CD-ROM and Other Concepts in the Knowledge Base selected characteristic are shown in the right-hand column. CODE allows users a large degree of freedom in the types of browsers they may combine. One window may in fact hold one or more graphical browsers, one or more textual browsers, or combinations of both. Figure 6 shows a window that presents information both graphically and textually: the part of the con­ cept network the terminologist is currently working on is dis­ played graphically in the left pane, while the characteristics of the concept selected on the graph are displayed textually on the right.

combined browsers



Figure 4: CODE Textual Browser Containing a Hierarchical List of Concepts with Two Collapsed Subtrees (The concept videodisk is selected.)

Figure 5:

CODE Window with Concepts Browser (Left), Characteristics Browser (Middle) and Facets Browser (Right)




Figure 6: CCM for CD-Audio (Note the generic concept (compact disk) above, coordinate concepts (top), the characteristic names (left), and characteristic values (in cells).) 5.3

The Characteristic Comparison Matrix

Since characteristics are so highly structured and consistent (due to inheritance and inconsistency detection, described below), it is possible to generate them automatically in tabular form, via a browser called the Characteristic Comparison Matrix (CCM), illustrated in Figure 7. While the CCM is useful for knowledge acquisition (to understand a concept it is essential to compare it with related concepts), it also assists in definition construction (Eck and Meyer 1993). The terminologist specifies, for a set of coordinate concepts, that only those characteristics be displayed whose values show differences. The automatically generated CCM provides a starting point for selecting the characteristics to be retained as the differentia in an intensional definition. The CCM can also be used to quickly compare the characteristics of selected concepts in order to identify synonyms. Finally, it is a useful knowledge-editing tool, allowing the terminologist to ensure that characteristic values of related concepts are con­ sistent in content and form.

SEE Frames and Definitions 1.3.2:75

Figure 7:

CODE Window with Graphical Concepts Browser (Left), and Textual Characteristics Browser (Right)


116 5.4

PRINCIPLES OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT Inheritance and Detection of Inconsistencies

As explained above, specific concepts share (or inherit) most of their generic concept's characteristics. In knowledge-based sys­ tems such as CODE, inheritance is typically achieved auto­ matically: any characteristic name and value introduced at one level of a generic-specific hierarchy will automatically inherit to all specific concepts, unless specified by the user at a lower level. Thus, when investigating a concept at a lower level, the user can access a certain amount of (inherited) information about this concept even before entering any new information about it. Associated with inheritance are mechanisms to detect inconsistencies within a knowledge structure. For example, referring to Table 2, if the terminologist were to change the characteristic ENCODING METHOD: digital or analog of optical disk, s/he would be automatically signalled that this would cre­ ate an inconsistency with compact disk and CD-ROM (both of whose characteristics have been modified to ENCODING METHOD: digital). The terminologist could then choose to have the new characteristic value inherit to compact disk and CD-ROM (effec­ tively overwriting the current value), or perhaps rethink the intended value change at optical disk. In the first half of this chapter, we described a number of basic concepts of interest to anyone wishing to develop a sys­ tematic approach to concept analysis, which is essential to ac­ quiring the subject-field knowledge upon which high-quality terminology management depends. Our overview of concept analysis was divided into two parts: • The concepts required to understand the notion of a characteristic: the concepts of intension and extension, characteris­ tic components, characteristics as concepts, and types of characteristics • The concepts required to understand the notion of a relation: the concepts of hierarchical vs. non-hierarchical relations, inheritance, representation of concept systems, and the com­ plexity of concept systems In the second half of this chapter, we outlined various appli­ cations of concept analysis for practical terminology problems. While most term banks and specialized dictionaries still do not systematically record the results of concept analysis, we noted

automatic inheritance

systematic analysis

knowledge engineering tools



that there is increasing evidence that terminology is moving in this direction. Such promising developments as exist, however, are fundamentally limited by the media they require: books and databases are simply not designed to assist in the systematic acquisition, encoding, and retrieval of knowledge. Therefore, we suggested that knowledge management tools currently under development in the Knowledge Engineering community provide a logical alternative. One such tool, CODE, is described and illustrated as an example of an environment that offers the pos­ sibility of a new generation of terminological resources, provid­ ing not only linguistic information about terms, but also knowl­ edge about the concepts that they denote. REFERENCES

Bowker, Lynne. 1992. "Guidelines for Handling Multidimensionality in a Terminological Knowledge Base". M.A. Thesis. Ottawa, Canada: School of Translation and Inter­ pretation, University of Ottawa. Cole, W.D. 1987. "Terminology: Principles and Methods". Computers and Translation, Vol. 2, 77-87. Hayes-Roth, F. 1987. "Expert Systems". Encyclopedia of Artificial Intelligence. Stuart C. Shapiro, ed., Vol. 1. New York: John Wiley and Sons, 287-298. Kukulska-Hulme, A. 1990. "Subject Knowledge in Computerized Dictionaries". Translation and Meaning, M. Thelen and B. Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, eds. (Part 1, Euroterm), 22-48. . 1992. "Terminological Cross-mapping for a Sub-domain ofComputing". Review of Applied Linguistics (97-98), 187-204. Meyer, Ingrid. 1993. "Concept Management for Terminology: A Knowledge Manage­ ment Approach". Standardizing Terminology for Better Communication: Practice, Applied Theory, and Results. Richard A. Strehlow and Sue Ellen Wright, eds. (Special Technical Publication of the ASTM, No. 1166.) Philadelphia: American Society for Testing and Materials, 140-151. . 1992. "Knowledge Management for Terminology-Intensive Applications: Needs and Tools". Lexical Semantics and Knowledge Representation. J. Pustejovsky and S. Bergler, eds. Berlin: Springer Verlag, 21-37. Meyer, Ingrid, and Douglas Skuce. 1992. "Computer-Assisted Concept Analysis for Terminology: A Framework for Technological and Methodological Research". Proceedings of the Fourth International Congress of the European Association for Lexicography (EURALEX 90). Barcelona: Bibliograf, 129-138. Meyer, Ingrid, Douglas Skuce, Lynne Bowker, and Karen Eck. 1992b. "Towards a New Generation of Terminological Resources: An Experiment in Building a Terminological




Knowledge Base". COLING-92: Proceedings of the 15th Interna-tional Conference on Computational Linguistics, 956-960. Nirenburg, S., I. Monarch, T. Kaufmann, I. Nirenburg, and J. Carbonell. 1988. Acquisition of Very Large Knowledge Bases: Methodology, Tools and Applications. (Technical Report CMU-CMT-88-108.) Pittsburgh: Carnegie Mellon University. Picht, Heribert, and Jennifer Draskau. 1985. Terminology: An Introduction. Guildford, Surrey: University of Surrey. Sager, Juan C , 1990. A Practical Course in Terminology Processing, Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company. Sowa, John. 1992. "Conceptual Analysis as a Basis for Knowledge Acquisition". The Psychology of Experts: Cognitive Research and Empirical AI. R.R. Hoffman (Ed.) New York: Springer Verlag. Wright, Sue Ellen. 1993. "Foreign Language Equivalents in an ASTM Standard". Standardizing Terminology for Better Communication: Practice, Applied Theory, and Results. Richard A. Strehlow and Sue Ellen Wright (Eds.) (Special Technical Publi­ cation of the ASTM, No. 1166.) Philadelphia: American Society for Testing and Materials, 113-126. Wüster, Eugen. 1968. The Machine Tool. An Interlingual Dictionary of Basic Concepts. London: Technical Press.

1.4.3 Multifaceted/Multidimensional Concept Systems KYO KAGEURA 1


Because human cognitive processes are very complex, the conceptual system that assists in these mental operations or processes of thought is also expected to be extremely complex, with a great number of cognitive viewpoints being interwoven to constitute a complex, multifaceted conceptual space. In terminology, however, we do not need to account for the whole complexity of this abstract conceptual system, because:

conceptual space

... a theory of concepts for terminology in essence only has to provide an adequate explanation for cognitive motivations in term formation and to provide the basis for structuring vocabularies in a more effective way than is offered by alphabetical ordering (Sager 1990:21). In this paper, therefore, we are concerned only with the organization of concept systems as reflected in terminological representation, and not with psychological or philosophical sys­ tems of concepts, though it is useful to bear in mind the results of psychological or philosophical studies, such as Rosch and Lloyd (1978), Hempel (1952), and Achinstein (1968). By concepts, accordingly, we basically mean those units of thought actually or potentially represented by terms. It should also be noted that this chapter does not aim to introduce any specific formal means of representing concepts as are actively studied in computational linguistics and artificial intelligence. Evens (1988) and Nagle (1992) give useful explanations on this topic, though both treat specific methods of representing concepts. Looking synchronically at a concept system through its terms, we can recognize two different aspects: (1) a static organization of stable concepts represented by established terms and their inter-relationships and (2) dynamic potential for ac­ commodating new concepts in the system, manifested by the

terminological representation

SEE Concept Analysis 1.4.2:98

SEE Term Formation 1.2.1:25



rules governing the formation of new terms. These two aspects are the fundamental components of a terminology-oriented concept system: the former provides the basic established parts, while the latter controls expansion and re-organization. 2



Multidimensional Conceptual Space

It is generally accepted in terminological studies that a concept, or a unit of thought, consists of a set of characteristics (Felber 1984; Sager 1990). Although in psychological studies it is a point of debate whether a concept can indeed be satisfactorily described by its characteristics (Smith and Medin 1981), it is reasonable here to make this assumption because: • It seems sufficient for most terminological studies of con­ cepts that treat rigid and clearly articulated subsets of con­ cept systems reflected in scientific terminology. • Given the current state of the art for terminology, much has still to be done before any alternative or extended views of concepts can be properly introduced for the study of terminology. Since the characteristics of a concept are frequently specified from different points of view or facets (function, material, shape, weight, etc.), a set of characteristics that constitutes a concept is normally multidimensional. From this point alone, we can expect a concept system to be multidimensional. For our purposes, characteristics need not be primitives, but may themselves be complexes of characteristics, because, as noted above, terminology is not concerned with ultimate systems of concepts and does not need to go further than necessary in describing terminological phenomena. Regarding a concept as a set of characteristics, i.e., taking the intensional view of concepts, the static organization of a concept system can be viewed as consisting of the totality of all types of characteristics used for constituting all the concepts in the system. More specifically, we can regard the static system as a multidimensional space in which intersecting axes are seen as representing each facet or type of characteristic based on which each characteristic of a concept is specified. This is




Intension and Extension INFB 11:339



Figure 1: A Subspace within a Static Conceptual Organization similar to Sager's description of a model of knowledge (1990:15). A typical concept in this conceptual space is located in a subspace area specified by the intersection of the ranges of the characteristics comprising the concept. Figure 1 illustrates a subspace in such a concept system. Figure 1 represents an approximation, as it is impossible to represent multidimensional organization in two-dimensional space. The drawing constitutes an attempt to illustrate the threedimensional space occupied by the characteristics making up the concept system for the term computer. The lines F1—F4 indi­ cate facets or types of characteristics, with F4, our primary focus of interest in this discussion, representing the charac­ teristic mode of operation. The oval segments c1, c2, and c3 positioned along F4 define the ranges of F4, such as analog, hybrid, and digital, respectively. Let us suppose that the inter­ section of the ranges of F1—F3 in the center of the drawing surrounded by the oval outlined by the dot-dash line determines the subspace covering the concept computer. This threedimensional subspace can be located anywhere in higher dimen­ sional space, depending on the types of characteristics used to

SEE Concept Systems 1.4.1:89



integrate it into the higher space. The range of the concept computer with respect to mode of operation is then determined as indicated by the cylinder drawn by the dotted line in the threedimensional space. Other facets can also be used to specify the coordinates of F1-F3, e.g., size, in which case the concept space computer is organized into yet another three-dimensional space containing the concepts mainframe, workstation, etc. Without any restrictions, this model is too flexible because it would admit any sort of concepts to be incorporated into the system by freely combining the characteristics of any facets. For instance, in this model it is formally possible to establish a concept at the intersection of certain ranges of the facets F1, F2 and F4, even if such a concept does not exist. Also it allows any relations between concepts to be established freely, as long as they share a characteristic, e.g., among digital, digital computer, digital watch and digital signal processing. In reality, however, static concept systems are more tightly organized than such a theoretical model might imply, thus re­ flecting our actual cognitive system, in which categorization is the major means of organization (Rosch and Lloyd 1978; Roth and Frisby 1986). This type of organization leads the concept system towards classificatory organization, which is especially important in a terminological concept system because naming, in contrast to description, is essentially classificatory (Tyler 1978; Pugh 1984). Thus the organization of the concept system represented by this model does not remain in a network of unordered concepts established by all the connections existing among characteristics, but is in reality organized with a certain order, leading to a classificatory structure of concepts and leav­ ing other connections for a secondary level of relations. 2.2

excessive flexibility

INFO Classification INFB 9:334

Classificatory Organizations of Concept Systems

Following a classificatory organization, the above example of computer can be re-represented as a set of relations among con­ cepts or conceptual categories, as in Figure 2. Here the various viewpoints reflecting the subdivision of computer, i.e., mode and size, introduce multidimensionality, which corresponds basically to types of characteristics. Here the third dimension is simulated by the use of curved lines on our drawing.

conceptual relations



Figure 2: A Classificatory Organization for Computer The dot-dash line representing analog computer lies on a plane representing analog devices and functions, but only that range of this plane that intersects the subspace occupied by the concept computer participates in the system we are examining. Analog watch or analog dial indicator, for instance, do not. (Note that here we are treating analog as a concept, not as a characteristic of something, i.e., something that is analog.) Of course, these distinctions depend on the relations among the characteristics making up these concepts, but they also seem to depend on types of concepts being considered. Thus it is convenient to introduce basic types of concepts and characteristics, and observe multidimensionality on this

types of concepts

conceptual categories



basis. Here we present only general types of characteristics and conceptual categories, though their actual status may vary from one field to another. Since, however, terminologies can only be exemplified with reference to particular subject fields, we will use terms and concepts taken from the field of documentation to exemplify the organization of conceptual systems. Sager and Kageura (1994) and Kageura (1993) give more detailed systems of conceptual classifications in documentation. If we observe mental processes, conceptual organization proceeds neither top-down nor bottom-up, but can be character­ ized by basic levels (Rosch and Lloyd 1978). For the purpose of explanation, however, let us assume a top-down categoriza­ tion. First of all, conceptual space on the whole can be divided into at least four categories, i.e., entities, activities, properties, and relations (Sager 1990; Carlson and Nirenburg 1991). These categories reflect the basic ontologicai types of concepts and each of them exhibits the multidimensional aspects exhibited by concept organization. 2.2.1 Entities Most conceptual theories in terminology have focussed attention on the organization of systems of entity concepts. Irrespective of subject field, we can recognize two different means of classificatory organization for entity concepts: • Specific concepts are categorized into generic concepts by removing distinctive characteristics (or viewed from the opposite perspective, generic concepts are divided into nar­ rower specific concepts by adding anew characteristic). • Parts are categorized under or integrated into the whole to which they belong. Generic-specific classification is based on the addition or subtraction of characteristics, as in the pair computer and analog computer. There are some types of characteristics or facets that have been recognized in most, if not all, subject fields. Some of them are listed in Table 1. From a purely conceptual viewpoint, most of these facets can take continuous values, thus the number of potential char­ acteristics is calculable. In reality, the characteristics are deter­ mined by existing linguistic items, which reflect a specific way of delineating these conceptual spaces separately for each

conceptual space




Table 1: Basic Facets and Sample Values for Entity Concepts SAMPLE VALUES (CHARACTERISTICS)


Abstractness Quantity Formal Complexity Shape Color Animateness Energy

Material, Representational, Abstract, Open Single, Pair, Set, etc. Simple, Complex, etc. Oval, Cylinder, etc. White, Green, Red, etc. Animate, Inanimate Active, Passive, etc.


Origin Relation Function

Artificial, Reproduced, etc. Equivalent, Attached to, etc. Production, Service, etc.

subject field. In addition to these general facets, a subject field may establish specific facets, which may be analyzed to reveal the complexity of the field. In the case of documentation, for instance, we can recognize a facet taking values of documentational/informational and non-documentional. Table 2 illustrates the major categories used in the generic/ specific organization of entity concepts. Note the simplified structure presented in Table 2. There can be cases of polyhierarchy in which a concept has two or more generic concepts. In comparison with the generic/specific classification, the whole/part classification is straightforward, as there is usually only one way of recognizing whole/part relations: BOOK




Concept subsystems established by activities have not been discussed much in terminology, partly because activities are considered to be secondary to entities. The broad classificatory scheme for activity concepts seems to be basically the same as for entities, i.e., generic/specific and whole/part.

concept delineation





The essential facets or types of characteristics used for gen­ eric/specific organization of activity concepts are: • activity phenomena manifested by the resultant state, e.g., action, production, transfer, state change, etc. • fields of activity determined by the types of agents, ob­ jects, patients, etc., involved in the activity concepts • temporal nature, e.g., instant, durative, etc. • mode or manner of activity Table 3 sketches a rough structure of a concept subsystem for activities related to online searching in documentation re­ sources. A whole-part relation is recognized for instance be­ tween the concepts circulation, reference, etc., and library service. The distinction of generic/specific and whole/part classifi­ cation is less clear in activities than in entities. 2.2.3

types of characteristics

whole-part relation

Qualities and Relations

Qualities and relations are even less frequently discussed be­ cause not only do they not tend to form independent concepts, but they also exhibit very different organization from entity or activity concepts. If we look at qualities or relations, we can recognize that the values used to express them are frequently relational coordinates, e.g., A4, B5, etc., and can be catego­ rized under format, a feature that is not normally recognized in entities or activities. This derives from the fact that facets, or types of characteristics, which so far have been treated only as something used for constituting other concepts, can themselves be concepts. If we regard facets and values in Table 1 as con­ cepts, they also constitute examples of this type. In addition, we can recognize the classificatory structure established by addition or subtraction of characteristics for both types and values. For instance, in case of types, relation can be made more specific to yield ratio by adding the characteristic quantifiable to the concept quantity/quality. In the case of value concepts, this type of classification is exemplified by the con­ cepts for equivalence and synonymy, equi-angular, etc., where these value concepts are produced by adding the characteristics of the concepts being compared.

qualities and relations SEE Concept Analysis 1.4.2:98

classificatory structure

1.4.3 MULTIDIMENSIONAL CONCEPT SYSTEMS Table2: A Sketch of a Generic/Specific Organization for Entity Concepts MATERIAL ENTITIES

(By Animateness) — Animate (By Complexity) — People (by fonction, etc.) — Organization (by fonction, etc.) — Inanimate (By Energy) — Active — Machines — Passive (By Documentational/ Non-Documentational) — Documents (by structure of contents) (by shape or form) — Non-Documents (by function, etc.)

Librarian, author Library, information center

Computer, terminal

Anthology, dictionary File, volume

Desk, card


(By Documentational/ Non-Documentational) — Basic Symbolic Entities — Documentation Entities (By Complexity) — Simple — Complex

Sign Keyword Description


(By Informational/Non-Informational) — Information/Knowledge (By Complexity) — Simple Units (By relation) — Complex Units — Subjective

Information, content Hit, miss, link Subject, theory, optics Rule, criteria, interest


(By Complexity) — Simple — Complex (By Relation)

Element, unit, primitive System, category, network Facet, sample




Table 3: A Sketch of a Generic/Specific Organization for Activity Concepts (By Phenomena) — Action (By Temporal Nature) — Instant (by fields) (by mode/manner) — Durative

Parity check Double check Search

— Production (By Temporal Nature)


— Durative (by fields)

Printing, copying

— Transfer (By Temporal Nature) — Instant (by fields) — State Change (By Temporal Nature) — Instant (by fields)

2.3 .


Sending Transmission Restriction Classification

Multidimensionality Reconsidered

Within the classificatory organization of concept systems, we have to distinguish two different kinds of multidimensionality: • multidimensionality introduced by the co-existence of differ­ ent means of concept classification, i.e., generic/specific, part/whole, and type/value • multidimensionality introduced by the application of different types of characteristics or facets at the same level in the generic/specific structure Generic/specific and part/whole classifications have been widely accepted in terminological studies, as these relations are clearly recognizable among entity concepts, while type/value relations have not been given much attention as a means for classificatory organization of concepts.

kinds of multidimensionality

type/value relations

1.4.3 MULTIDIMENSIONAL CONCEPT SYSTEMS The model of a multidimensional conceptual space presented here, which consists of all the characteristics that represent a subject field, has the following features: • Concepts are usually bundles of characteristics, but charac­ teristics themselves may in certain subject fields be consid­ ered as independent concepts. • The basic classificatory organization differs according to the type of concepts it accommodates (entities, activities, and properties, as well as relations, and their sub-categories). It is further differentiated by the subject field or area of knowl­ edge covered. • The generic/specific classification, although important, is not the only means of classification. • Each of the major types of concepts or concept classes has its own set of characteristics. In general, it can be said that representing the multidimensionality of concept systems can become a realistic goal for ter­ minological research only when the actual types of concepts and characteristics are examined on the basis of terminological phe­ nomena. 3


features of the conceptual model


Several ways of adding new concepts to a concept system are conceivable: • by adding or subtracting (a) characteristic(s) of (a) new facet(s) to or from an existing concept, e.g., creating neurocomputer from computer • by modifying a value of a facet that is already used for constituting the concept, e.g., large scale integrated circuit (LSI) and very large scale integrated circuit (VLSI) • by assembling or integrating some concepts into a broader concept, or by the reverse process, i.e., breaking up a con­ cept into constituents, thus establishing whole/part relations

forming new concepts

In addition, it is possible for a totally new facet that has never existed in an overall concept system to be created and added (which means that our way of thinking itself is enhanced in a fundamental manner). compounding



The first type of concept formation constitutes the major means of enhancing concept systems. This method is reflected directly in the terminological process of determination, which in English is largely represented by compound formation. Tables 2 and 3 treated the viewpoints of classification as if they corresponded directly to the facets or types of characteristics. However, if we consider this phenomenon based on the termi­ nological practice of compounding, it is clear that the types of characteristics added to concepts may differ in the way they are added. For instance, the role or status of the same characteristic communication is different in communication process and communication media, which is also intuitively apparent. Further research is needed to study the viewpoints from which characteristics are added to concepts in order to consti­ tute new concepts, as distinct from the recognition of facets or types of characteristics as independent concepts. These manifest themselves as relations between constituent elements of complex terms. As terminological naming is essentially classificatory, the relations between constituent elements can also be inter­ preted as roles adopted by the characteristics (or concepts) in their logical and linguistic function as determinants with respect to the concepts represented by the term nuclei. Researchers have identified various sets of specifications (Downing 1977; Sager et al 1980; Pugh 1984). Table 4 lists major types of specifications recognized in complex terms in the field of docu­ mentation (Kageura 1993). Different types of concepts tend to require particular types of specifications which, in turn, tend to be associated with par­ ticular, limited sets of characteristics. For instance, activity concepts tend to require the specification of complementary ele­ ments (and the specification of complementary elements can be applied only to activities), while most quality or relation con­ cepts tend to require specification of attributed concepts. Entity concepts can take most types of specifications listed above. 4


Multidimensionality and the multifaceted nature of concept sys­ tems have long been a topic of study in the field of documenta­ tion and terminology and are now a major concern of cognitive science. A fair amount of literature exists on the abstract


specification INFO

Headwords INFB 6:330




Table 4: Major Types of Conceptual Specifications TYPES OF SPECIFICATIONS



Specification of: Constituent Elements Formal Attributes Attributed Concepts

List → Term List Term → Complex Term Order → Facet Order, Time

Retrieval Time


Specification of: Role Complementary Elements Function Link Use Destination

Copy → Sample Copy Processing → Data Processing → Electronic Data Processing System → Retrieval System → Document Retrieval System Language → Input Language Program → Computer Program


Specification of: Whole Status Location Time Origin Scope

Code → Title → Device → Print → Print → Reference →

Data Code Main Title Peripheral Device Pre-print Microfilm Print General Reference

images of concept systems, concept classes, and types of char­ acteristics. Unfortunately, however, explorations of the nature of concept systems make little systematic reference to termino­ logical data and the study of types of characteristics has been pursued with little attention to the overall system of concepts. For a better understanding of the nature of concept systems, we need more corpus-based analyses of terminological data and phenomena. This chapter has demonstrated the need for approaching the description of the multifaceted/multidimensional nature of con­ cept systems from two viewpoints: it presented a complex mod­ el of conceptual space based on abstract speculation and, limit­ ed by the constraints of space, a sketchy but representative

corpus-based analysis

empirical studies



analysis of actual, coherent data contained in a subject field. Many small-scale empirical studies of concept systems based on terminological data are needed before a definitive formal multi­ dimensional model of concepts can be established. REFERENCES

Achinstein, Peter. 1968. Concepts of Science—A Philosophical Analysis. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Carlson, L., and S. Nirenburg. 1991. "World Modelling for NLP". Proceedings of the International Workshop on Electronic Dictionaries. Downing, P.A. 1977. "On the Creation and Use of English Compound Nouns". Language, Vol. 53, No 4, p. 810-842. Evens, Martha Walten, ed. 1988. Relational Models of the Lexicon: Representing Knowledge in Semantic Networks (Studies in Natural Language Processing). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Felber, Helmut. 1984. Terminology Manual. Paris: UNESCO and Infoterm. Hempel, Carl G. 1952. Fundamentals of Concepts Formation in Empirical Science. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Kageura, Kyo A. 1993. Conceptual Analysis of Japanese Complex Noun Terms with Special Reference to the Field of Documentation. Manchester: Ph.D. Thesis, University of Manchester. Nagle, Tim E. 1992. Conceptual Structures: Current Research and Practice. Chisester: Ellis Horwood. Pugh, J.M. 1984. A Contrastive Conceptual Analysis and Classification of Complex Noun Terms in English, French and Spanish with Special Reference to the Field of Data Processing. Manchester: Ph.D. Thesis, University of Manchester. Rosch, Eleanor, and Barbara B. Lloyd, eds. 1978. Cognition and Categorization. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Roth, Ilona, and John P. Frisby. 1986. Perception and Representation: A Cognitive Approach (Open Guides to Psychology). Milton Keynes: Open University Press. Sager, Juan C. 1990. A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company. Sager, Juan C , David Dungworth, and Peter F. McDonald. 1980. English Special Languages. Wiesbaden: Oscar Brandstetter. Sager, Juan C , and Kyo Kageura. 1994. "Concept Classes and Concept Struc­ tures". Actes de Langue Française et de Linguistique, Vol.7. Smith, Edward E., and Douglas L. Medin. 1981. Categories and Concepts. Cam­ bridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. Tyler, Stephan A. 1978. The Said and the Unsaid: Mind, Meaning and Culture. New York: Academic Press.

1.4.4 Multidimensional Classification of Concepts and Terms LYNNE BOWKER 1 MULTTDIMENSIONALITY

Multidimensionality is a phenomenon of conceptual classifica­ tion that arises when concepts are classified in more than one way within a concept system. Essentially, classification consists of grouping similar concepts into a class on the basis of com­ mon characteristics. If more than one characteristic can be used to distinguish between the concepts, then they can be classified in more than one way, i.e., in more than one dimension. The characteristics provide viewpoints on the dimensions of con­ ceptual classification. A dimension represents one way of classi­ fying a group of concepts; a class having more than one dimen­ sion is termed multidimensional. Example: The representation of the class VEHICLE, shown in Figure la), is unidimensional; VEHICLE is classified solely on the basis of the viewpoint of the characteristic medium of transportation, into AIR VEHICLE, LAND VEHICLE, and WATER VEHICLE.

Figures lb) and c), however, illustrate the fact that there are other viewpoints by which VEHICLE can be classified, based on other characteristics that a vehicle can have, including method of propulsion and principal type of load carried. If all three ways of classifying VEHICLE are considered simultaneously, then the representation is multidimensional, as illustrated in Figure 2. Some of the concepts in the classifi­ cation established in this example, such as CAR and AIRPLANE, can be members of several dimensions. Multidimensionality can thus be very complicated, particularly when it occurs at various levels of the hierarchical classification, as shown in Figure 3.

multidimensionality INFO Classification 1NFB 9:334

SEE Multidimensionality 1.4.3:119



Figure 1: Multiple Viewpoints of the Concept VEHICLE

Figure 2: Basic Multidimensional View of the Concept VEHICLE




Figure 3: Complex Multidimensional View of the Concept VEHICLE




Differences in conceptual classification that lead to multidimensionality result from different societal needs, different levels of perception and cognition, and sometimes from misunderstanding the relationships among natural phenomena. For instance, the same product is likely to be classified differently by manufac­ turers, consumers, and customs inspectors. Many differences in classification result from different scientific theories. For exam­ ple, in the field of biology, there are three different, mutually exclusive methods of classifying living organisms (evolutionary systematics, phenetics, and cladistics), each of which classifies the same set of concepts differently. Changes in the reality of a worldly phenomenon (e.g., a given technology), and the consequent changes in the subject field describing this phe­ nomenon can also give rise to different classifications. Differences in classification, and hence multidimensionality, are aggravated when examined from a linguistic point of view. On the one hand, sets of terms may obscure what are in fact the same ranges of dimensionality. On the other hand, differences in conceptual structure based on cultural, political, or societal structures may not be fully represented in the terminology. 3



classification differences


For some purposes (e.g., in most technical and scientific litera­ ture), a unidimensional classification is sufficient because the concepts in question only have to be classified to meet one particular need. For example, in a safety manual, vehicles may be classified according to type of fuel only, whereas a tax sche­ dule may classify them by price only. This does not hold true for terminology. Terminologists do not normally have the lux­ ury of dealing with concepts and terms in restricted contexts; therefore, terminologists have to: • discover patterns of multidimensionality • understand the phenomena and motivation for multidimen­ sional classifications of a concept • decide on the relevance of the dimensions, i.e., separate those that are text or document bound and have little general relevance from those that are perceived as generally valid

unidimensional classification multidimensional classification



• find a way of representing multidimensionality in termino­ logical publications, term banks, etc. It is generally accepted that there is a close relationship between the science of terminology and that of classification. One possible explanation for the process of abstract concept formation (Sager 1990:22) is that we identify individual formal concepts as having certain shared characteristics. We select and abstract some of these characteristics in order to establish abstract concepts, which represent the formal concepts. In a further stage of ordering, the abstract concepts may be grouped into broader classes. Hence, classification also plays a signifi­ cant role in establishing concept systems since concepts are characterized themultidimensionality relations they have is with other concepts. One reasonby that pertinent to terminol­ ogy is that it allows terminologists to gain a more substantial understanding of a subject field, which in turn allows them to produce higher quality term records. Another practical and important reason for acknowledging multidimensionality in terminological research is that it reduces the risk of omitting any relevant concepts in the subject field. For example, the concept PASSENGER VEHICLE appears in the dimension based on the characteristic principal type of load carried. However, if VEHICLE had been classified only on the basis of the characteristic medium of transportation, then the term PASSENGER VEHICLE might not be included in the term bank or terminological publication. Terminologists often come across terms from various dimensions when scanning the docu­ mentation, but they may neglect to consult documentation related to a specific dimension if it is ruled out in the early stages of a specific research task. Because terminologists often have no way of knowing which terms are of interest to any given end-user, they should consider all dimensions so that their term records will meet the needs of the widest possible group of end-users. Until recently, multidimensionality received very little atten­ tion in the terminology literature. Some authors ignore the issue, while others simply acknowledge its existence. Practicing terminologists, too, rarely attempt to deal with multidimensional concept systems. One reason for this neglect may be because terminologists lacked adequate tools for dealing with this type

abstract concepts

subject field understanding concept identification

AI tools



of phenomenon. They have generally represented concept sys­ tems using a pencil and paper, which is not suitable for han­ dling complex multidimensional representations. It is only recently that developments in computer technology, and particu­ larly in Artificial Intelligence (AI), have provided tools that make it feasible for terminologists to handle multidimensionality. 4


The following set of proposed guidelines was developed using two sources: an investigation of the classification techniques used in several disciplines, and practical experimentation (Bowker 1992). In order to document them more clearly, the guide­ lines have been separated into two distinct operations: recognizing and representing multidimensionality. The procedure for handling multidimensionality is not strictly sequential; there is some overlap between the two operations, and some steps may need to be repeated. To recognize multidimensionality: • Work with a graphic representation, ideally a tree diagram, of the concept system. (If no adequate representation is readily available, create one.) • Consider all possible ways of classifying a subject field at all levels of the classification. • Recognize indications that multidimensionality exists (e.g., repetition of concepts, use of different sets of contrasting lexical pairs). • Identify and correct false multidimensionality. To represent multidimensionality: • Work on one dimension at a time, completing it as exhaus­ tively as possible before moving on to the next dimension. • Rank the dimensions in order of relative importance. • Clearly distinguish the different dimensions on the graphic representation. • Clearly indicate the characteristic underlying each dimension in a place that is easily accessible to the user.





• Revise the graphic representation of the concept system as more is learned about the subject field. 5



Guideline 1

The systematic representation of concepts so that the relations between them are explicit will help terminologists get a clearer picture of the subject field and make it easier for them to recognize multidimensionality. Sometimes, graphical representa­ tions can be found in the documentation, but if no adequate representations are readily available, terminologists may find it helpful to construct their own based on the information they find in the documentation. 5.2

Guideline 2

While a unidimensional representation of a subject field may suit some purposes, it poses a problem for terminologists: some concepts (and hence terms) may be overlooked. In order for a representation to be multidimensional, all possible ways of clas­ sifying every concept must be reflected at each level of the classification. 5.3

systematic representation

missing terms

Guideline 3

Multidimensionality is not always explicit or obvious, so termi­ nologists should be able to recognize indications of its exis­ tence. For instance, different documents may contain different breakdowns of the subject field (e.g., in tree diagrams or tables of contents). Different authors may use different vocabulary, particularly different sets of contrasting lexical pairs (e.g., in hypertext environments, one author may contrast unidirectional with bidirectional links, while another may contrast implicit with explicit links). The repetition of a concept in different branches of the concept system representation is also an indica­ tor that multidimensionality is present.




Figure 4: False Multidimensionality (4a) and the Corrected System (4b) 5.4

Guideline 4

As well as recognizing true multidimensionality, terminologists should be able to identify and correct false multidimensionality: a classification error occurring when a concept is classified at one level of the hierarchy on the basis of two characteristics that should be applied at different levels within the same dimension. This type of error results in conceptual confusion and the omission of concepts. For example, Figure 4a) shows a classification where WATER VEHICLE has been classified into ROWBOAT, SCHOONER, CUTTER and MOTORBOAT. We can determine that the concepts SCHOONER and CUTTER have been simultaneously classified according to the characteristic method of propulsion, for which they both have the value sail, and the characteristic number of masts for which SCHOONER has the value two while CUTTER has the value one. Meanwhile, ROWBOAT and MOTORBOAT have only been classified according to method of propulsion and have the values oars and motor respectively. A more correct classification, shown in Figure 4b), classifies WATER VEHICLE first into ROWBOAT, MOTORBOAT, and SAILBOAT according to the characteristic method of propulsion, and at the next level of the hierarchy, SAILBOAT is

false multidimensionality



classified into SCHOONER and CUTTER, on the basis of the characteristic number of masts. 5.5

Guideline 5

Although it is crucial to represent multidimensionality in order to have a complete classification of the subject field, it can be very confusing to work with multiple dimensions. It may be wise for terminologists to start by working with a single dimension at a time, completing it as exhaustively as possible before moving on to the next dimension. 5.6

Guideline 6

In order to know which dimension to work with, terminolo­ gists may find it helpful to rank the characteristics (and hence dimensions). Dimension ranking could be determined, for example, on the basis of the frequency of occurrence in the documentation, the number of terms in the dimensions, or the opinions of subject-field experts. 5.7

dimensional notation

Guideline 8

In addition to clearly distinguishing the dimensions, it would be useful to indicate the characteristic upon which each di­ mension is based. This can be done directly on the diagram, or, if space is limited, a notation can be placed on the dia­ gram, and a legend can be used to indicate which characteris­ tic is represented by each notation (see Figure 2). 5.9

dimensional ranking

Guideline 7

Once ranked, it is important to distinguish the dimensions with some form of visible notation. For example, terminolo­ gists could assign a different notation (e.g., a number) to each dimension (see Figure 2). Alternately, they could use different colored or textured lines. 5.8

simplified working methods


Guideline 9

As stated in Guideline 1, terminologists will likely find it beneficial to work with a graphic representation of the concept system from the onset of the project, but for it to be truly

graphic representation



useful, it must be revised constantly as more is learned about the subject field. 6


Until now, multidimensionality has been largely neglected by terminologists because they did not have adequate tools to help them deal with this often complex phenomenon. Fortu­ nately, recent developments in computational technology, es­ pecially in Knowledge Engineering, a subfield of AI, make the entire process of conceptual analysis more tractable. The CODE system discussed in Chapter 1.4.2 provides one very viable option for representing multidimensionality in a flexi­ ble, user-friendly environment (Bowker 1996).

SEE Concept Analysis 1.4.2:98


Bowker, Lynne. 1991. Guidelines for Handling Multidimensionality in a Terminological Knowledge Base. MA Thesis. University of Ottawa. . 1996. A Multidimensional Approach to Classification in Terminology: Working within a Computational Framework. PhD Thesis, University of Manchester (UK). Sager, Juan C 1990. A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.

2 Types of Terminology Management

Section 2.1 Descriptive Terminology 2.1.1 Terminology Management for Technical Translation SUE ELLEN WRIGHT AND LELAND D. WRIGHT 1 INTRODUCTION

The purpose behind this chapter is to discuss the working envi­ ronment and methodological constraints that set translationoriented terminology management apart from other areas of ter­ minology activity. Because the creation of bilingual and multi­ lingual terminology resources is so central to the field, many of the factors that can affect the configuration of the translationoriented terminological entry, as well as of the translatorterminologist's workstation, are treated elsewhere in this book. First we will examine the fundamental distinctions between translation-oriented terminology management and other ap­ proaches in the field, then we will present different overviews of translation environments and will define the kinds of tools and methodologies that can be most effectively applied in the various venues. 2

SEE 1 Database Management Vol. II, 8.1.1 Entry Structures 16/. //, 8.1.3


Translators are frequently called upon to deal with texts of every possible length taken at random from greater contexts of which they have no prior knowledge. They encounter every­ thing from short, disconnected invoice lists (widely called "laundry lists" by English-speaking translators) for which there is no external contextual reference and no internal coherence, to—at the opposite end of the spectrum—entire books or librar­ ies of materials that afford a global picture of a discipline. Even on this scale, however, the ever-present deadlines and adminis­ trative constraints of the translator's working environment militate against extended terminology studies. The critical factor affecting this kind of "one-off" text production is the fact that such translators must practice ad hoc terminology management.

"one-off" text production SEE Contexts 1.3.3:80



In contrast to these conditions, most theoretical treatises and terminology training programs stress the advantages of systematic terminology management, which unfortunately fails to take into account the limitations that are imposed in the conventional translation workplace. In scope and methodology, the system­ atic model is subject-field-driven. Here terminologists have the time to collect materials, selecting terminology, and organizing it according to logical concept systems. This approach affords the opportunity to work with experts and to craft careful defini­ tions. In contrast, ad hoc terminology management is textdriven: terminologists and translators creating their own termi­ nology resources are presented with random extracts from a domain. If we postulate a complex concept system such as the one suggested in Fig. 1 (diagram borrowed from Bowker, p. 135) and represent the terms that might occur in a hypothetical text, the concepts that actually occur in the text might be covered by the odd blobs drawn in on the conceptual plane, plus the even odder blob at the bottom of the frame, which represents termi­ nology drawn from only obliquely related domains. The pur­ pose of this illustration is not to imply that texts are inherently incoherent (although, alas, many are), but rather to demonstrate that texts (with the exception of carefully modelled pedagogical ones) are not designed to mirror logical concept systems. They are generally written for an audience that possesses presumed prior knowledge of the subject field in question. Most signifi­ cantly, they most often invoke the concepts that are clustered toward the bottom of the hierarchical structure without perceiv­ ing any need to address the basic concepts at the top. Transla­ tors, in contrast to the experts for whom the original text was written, are frequently dropped down on these isolated informa­ tion atolls, and left to fend for themselves, unfamiliar with the sea of knowledge that surrounds them. Translator-terminologists experience several disadvantages: • As noted, they are not subject-field experts. • They may even have difficulty determining the field the text actually belongs to (seemingly logical, but totally incorrect assumptions can lead to disastrous translations).

text-driven terminology SEE Descriptive Terminology 2.1.4:184 Medical Terminology 2.1.2:160 concepts in texts SËË i Multidimensional Classification 1.4.4:133

translator limitations



Figure 1: Fragmented Concept Fields • Available research materials in both the target and the source language are inadequate. • They lack access to subject-field specialists. • Due to short delivery deadlines, they lack time to pursue extensive (or even cursory) research activity. • Even when information is available, they lack time to create extensive, thoroughly documented terminological entries. Despite the dismal prospect reflected here, translators, con­ fronted with a limited perspective on a discipline, must recon­ struct enough of the domain in question to understand the source text and produce a reliable target-language version. The limitations imposed on this activity do not, however, justify resigning oneself to doing translation without terminology docu­ mentation. The criteria that come to mind in this context are related to Quality Assurance: the target-language terminology must be accurate and reliable. Furthermore, translators working alone must concern themselves with the repeatability of terms within the text, and those working in groups must ensure con­ sistent reproducibility from individual to individual.

translator limitations

reliability repeatability reproducibility

Quality Management Vol. II, 7.2.3



Translation clients can themselves be the best source of information about the subject field and may even be able to supply subject-field expertise and support literature, although this is not always the case. Well-organized clients supply even freelance translators with the terminological information re­ quired to do the job. Although many forward-thinking com­ panies are doing just this, they often represent the exception to the rule, and, unfortunately, the terminology provided by some clients is sometimes so bad that it actually slows down pro­ duction instead of assisting it. Time limitations, however, remain the greatest hurdle, one that can only be surmounted by virtue of high-level keyboarding skills, experience, and highly efficient, interactive software design. If coherent ad hoc terminology collections are amassed over time (which is often impossible for the freelance translator), a comprehensive view of the field may eventually evolve out of disparate terminological entries, at which point it may be possi­ ble to outline partial concept fields to reveal the relations within the greater system. Hence, in ad hoc terminology management, the sequence of activities is roughly the opposite of that recom­ mended for systematic work (see Figure 2).

terminology sources

SEE Integrated Project Management Vol. II, 7.2.4

sequence of activities


Systematic Terminology Management

Ad Hoc Terminology Management

• Collect terms & concepts from global field • Construct a concept system or systems • Craft well-structured definitions • Create term entries

• Identify terms occurring in isolated texts • Create starter term entries

• Document available contexts • Research greater context, within time restrictions • Link entries to conceptual struc­ • If time and opportunity allow it, reconstruct the concept system based ture, reflecting the concept system(s) on available fragments

Figure 2: Work Sequences for Systematic and Ad Hoc Terminology Management



Despite the constraints imposed on translation-oriented termi­ nology, the translator must establish a minimum required level of documentation that will support the translation work at hand. Essentially, translators need to determine for themselves what the basic minimum terminological entry must look like in their working environment. Glossary-style entries that inform the user that Term A in L1 = Term B in L2 (i.e., term-equation en­ tries) are only useful insofar as the translator knows (or can remember) the original context where this equivalency actually applies. Consequently, classification according to domain and even subdomain categories is essential for ensuring the reus­ ability of terminological data. The inclusion of brief contextual references provides not only subject-related orientation (i.e., defining contexts), but also discourse-related collocational infor­ mation (linguistic contexts). As noted above, acquiring adequate definitions may be much more difficult than recording contexts. Although it may seem expedient at the time not to add source, date, and responsibility information, experience has shown that the lack of these items may result in considerable cost or dimin­ ished utility in the future. Including this information is usually not terribly onerous because it can be inserted in a template once and reused as needed. Most importantly, the proper as­ signment of information units to data categories is essential if information is to be fully retrievable and manipulatable. Ideally a translator's entry format would include a full com­ plement of these categories, bearing in mind that some data categories—more often than not, definitions and fine degrees of classification—may remain empty, at least on one or the other side of a language pair. 4


minimum terminological entry INFO Classification INFB 9:334

SEE Definitions 1.3.1:63 Contexts 1.3.2:75 Data Categories Vol. II, 8.1.2

SEE Medical Terminology 2.1.2:160


The approach to terminology management that will be appropri­ ate for any given translator or translation group depends on conditions that prevail in the individual working environment. These conditions include a number of overlapping criteria, which can as a rule be roughly classified into the following general types.

translation working environments



Personnel-management variables: • Is an individual translator working alone without interacting with other members of a translation team? • Are translators working on a freelance basis or are they inhouse employees? • Who in the group is responsible for doing terminology-re­ lated tasks—the individual translator, all translators in a group working collectively, a single group member who spe­ cializes in terminology management, the client, or some third party (such as a standardizing body, professional orga­ nization, or an outside contractor)?


Source- and target-text-related variables: • Does translation involve bilingual or multilingual operations? • Is translation text predominantly presented to the translator in hardcopy form or in machine-readable form? • Are texts varied and complex in nature, or are they highly repetitious? Is there a high volume of such repetitious texts? • What are the end-user expectations? Must the text be care­ fully prepared to produce publication-quality product, or are the clients simply looking for relatively meaningful output so that they can judge the general gist of foreign scholarship, technology, or events? • To what extent is harmonized usage important to specific clients or for specific kinds of jobs?

text production

Resource-management variables: • What kind of support is available for terminology manage­ ment activities? Does corporate management understand and enthusiastically approve, or do they consider terminology research and documentation to be a waste of time? • What kind of financial resources are available for investing in terminology management tools? Who makes decisions on such purchases: translator-terminologists or data-processing and information management supervisors? • What kinds of text production tools are translators using? Are they dictating or keyboarding their own texts using word-processing software?



2.7.7 TECHNICAL TRANSLATION • What kind of preconditioning (i.e., pre-translation support) is provided, such as the imposition of controlled language during upstream (i.e., previous) text production? The answers to these questions determine both the most desirable working methodology and the optimal support tools for applying that methodology. 4.1

Typical Translation Environments

Although the different factors alluded to in these questions can be combined freely in almost any configuration, the following composite scenarios are typical of the translation industry: 1) Individual translators translate complex texts, often in a wide variety of only loosely related fields, with materials pre­ sented mostly in hardcopy form and requiring publication or near-publication quality output. 2) Small teams of translators produce similar high-quality work, perhaps involving longer, but equally demanding texts concentrated mostly in a more clearly defined field or set of fields. More and more texts handled by such groups are provided to the translators in machine-readable form. 3) Small or larger teams of translators must cope with huge, highly repetitive jobs under extreme time pressures, with texts provided in machine-readable form and sometimes carefully preconditioned to facilitate translation. In this sce­ nario, text quality may vary from very good to merely indic­ ative, i.e., translation that is marginally understandable by subject-area specialists who do not demand stylistic elegance of the text. Melby was probably the first to define computer assistance for translation in terms of levels of support provided to trans­ lators (Melby 1982). Machine Translation (MT) systems (Level 3) process full texts by analysis, transfer, and generation, i.e., regeneration, of a target-language text based on the source-lan­ guage text. Computer-Assisted Translation (CAT) or MachineAssisted Translation (MAT) (Level 1), on the other hand, introduces interactive terminology management tools to assist human translators while they produce translated texts. Some­ where in between these options are the Translation Memory (TM) systems, which comprise Level 2. Another way to

individual translators small work groups

large-scale production SEE Machine Translation Vol. 11, 8.3.1 computer assisted translation



categorize these programs is to speak of MAHT (MachineAssisted Human Translation, Level One) vs. HAMT (HumanAssisted Machine Translation, Level Two). The ultimate goal of computer assistance for translation is the as-yet unachieved fully automatic high quality translation (FAHQT) of general, unpreprocessed texts. Automatic translation without significant postediting is used with some degree of user satisfaction to achieve so-called indicative translation, where polished product is not the goal and the user only wants to obtain the general gist of the original document. 4.1.1 Level 1: High-Quality Text Production Typically, a great deal of high-quality translation in areas such as book publication, advertising, customer-oriented product literature, patent documents, and the like is produced by indi­ vidual technical translators working alone or in small groups. Small groups working together (or at least parallel to one an­ other) come together in a variety of configurations. An enter­ prise may, for instance, employ several translators who spe­ cialize in different fields or work in different languages or even in different departments of the organization. They may work more or less independently or they may actively collaborate, even directly linked via a local area network, bulletin board, or public network. The extent to which they collaborate in their terminology activities depends to a great extent on the level of cooperation that they maintain in the rest of their work and the degree to which the work they do has been or can be integrated into the terminological needs of the rest of the enterprise. Inde­ pendent translators may also form loose consortia for the pur­ pose of handling large projects that cannot be completed effi­ ciently by an individual translator. In some cases, these groups are brought together by translation bureau operators as a means of coping with large jobs or draconian deadlines. Although some translators dictate their work (and more may return to this procedure as automatic dictation becomes more prevalent and affordable), many prefer to keyboard their texts using word-processing software. The choice of text-production methodology is very personal and depends to a great extent on the aural-visual orientation of the translator to his or her work and on the translator's keyboard skills. Whether they dictate or

high-quality text production small groups

text production

2.7.7 TECHNICAL TRANSLATION keyboard their texts, most translators probably will prefer to have interactive access (i.e., creation, lookup, and update capability) to their terminology resources as they work. The question arises as to who should conduct terminology management activities in any group situation. As Hohnhold has aptly pointed out, the translator is confronted with the need to assimilate the subject-related content of the text and to master the linguistic medium required to express that content in both the source and the target languages (Hohnhold 1990). In other words, one must come to understand the text itself in the source language, be able to relate the individual source-language terms to that understanding of the text, and find the appropriate tar­ get-language terms to recreate that meaning in the second language. Hohnhold claims that the research conducted to docu­ ment terminology entries serves both these goals: it not only reveals the terms needed to express the ideas embodied in the text—it also instructs researchers in the subject matter treated by the text, thus enabling them to apply that increased under­ standing to the translation process. This observation constitutes a strong argument for translators to do their own terminology research and documentation. This goes without saying in a oneperson translation business. In group environments, however, the efficiency afforded by division of labor can outweigh the heuristic benefits of doing one's own research. If, for instance, the members of a group are each translating an L1 text into a different language (i.e., L2, L3, L4), it may be most expeditious for one member of the group to prepare an L1 glossary and for each language group or individual representing each language to add the entry data (or separate entries) for that language. If everyone is working on the same project in the same direction, it may make more sense for one person to act as the chief terminologist, creating data files that will then be used by everyone. In this kind of environment, the ability to create read-only files is extremely useful so that only one team member is authorized to create or change official term entries, but it is also important that the individual translators be able to create their own comment or annotation entries where they can leave messages for the terminologist and for their peers. Con­ stant feedback among the members of the group is essential to ensure accurate, coordinated text production because each


text content and form

bilingual and multilingual environments



individual acquires new knowledge both from the text and from external sources as the project evolves. 4.1.2 Level 2 Applications for Individuals and Small Groups It is advantageous to consider the use of Level 2 tools for computer-assisted human translation if a working group or indi­ vidual has had (or has plans to have) the opportunity: • to amass a sizable corpus of translated texts in fairly consis­ tent subject areas • to create a significant terminology database in the same areas • and to obtain texts for translation in machine-readable form. Concordance and term-extraction programs can be used to scan the document to identify candidate terms, which are then checked against existing terminological entries to create a tenta­ tive glossary to be used to assist human translation. The use of such programs presupposes the notion that both the termino­ logical entries included in the database and the texts fed into the system are well identified in order to ensure proper domainrelated matching of terms from new texts with terms already stored in the system. Here the need to explicitate information in terminology databases becomes painfully apparent. Failure to provide the necessary domain-orientation markers and other critical transfer comment in retrievable form may render overly simplistic or poorly articulated terminology resources unusable for more sophisticated applications. Translation memory programs enable the system to search the existing text corpus to ascertain if any text units in the new document have already been translated during previous projects. This process first involves the alignment of parallel text seg­ ments. If true parallels are found, chunks of text can be re­ trieved and manipulated to generate the new text. Ideally, this process should be coordinated with the concordance manage­ ment or term-extraction system so that new terms that enter the system can be semi-automatically recorded in working term entries. So-called "workbench" systems provide viable inter­ action among translation memory, terminology database man­ agement, text processing, and even machine translation program components. When they are used effectively, these tools can drastically reduce translation turnaround times, increase produc­ tivity, and reduce inaccuracies (or at least, inconsistencies).

concordance programs

translation memory


2.1.1 TECHNICAL TRANSLATION Special sub-types of concordance and translation memory systems have been developed (mostly in-house for major soft­ ware publishers) that enable translators to scan online localiza­ tion materials for previously existing translation solutions (ei­ ther at the level of the terminological unit or at the text level) that can be reused in new versions of user interfaces and docu­ mentation materials. Not only do these systems provide access to terminological information, they also alleviate the logistical problems involved in inserting translated user-oriented material into files made up primarily of programming code. Level 2 sys­ tems may extend far beyond stand-alone concordance and text alignment packages and terminology database management sys­ tems to include multiple dictionaries, integrated text-processing features, and in-house, proprietary information.

SEE Localization Vol. II, 8.2.5 ln-house TDBs Vol. 11, 8.2.3

4.1.3 Level 3: Machine Translation Systems It is not the purpose of this article to debate the relative effec­ tiveness or utility of machine translation, although many trans­ lators feel strongly about these issues. As noted, the specific terminology management issues related to machine translation are treated in detail elsewhere. In translation-management environments, the initial concern for translators and translation managers evaluating Level 3 systems is determining when and if machine translation makes sense in a given environment. Both the machine aids for translation described here and the labor invested in translation-oriented terminology management represent up-front fixed costs. In any given situation, manage­ ment must determine where the payback point occurs for these investments and whether it occurs soon enough to warrant the initial investment (Koller 1994). Obviously, machine translation may offer an attractive alter­ native to high costs and slow turnaround time if high volumes of translation must be produced, if severe time constraints are involved, if there is significant uniformity with respect to topic, terminology, and style, and if control can be exercised over input texts. If "clients"—particularly in-house researchers, for instance—are satisfied with indicative translation or gisting, and there is a great deal of material to process, machine translation may provide the ideal solution. Furthermore, if highly repetitive texts can be stringently controlled with respect to input

SEE Machine Translation Vol. II, 8.3.1

machine translation parameters



terminology and syntax, the possibility for even fully-automatic high-quality machine translation, or something very close to it, exists. Even if high quality is demanded of more complex or varied texts, loading the system with extensive terminological information, coupled with skilled postediting, may, at least in some environments, increases translator productivity without sacrificing quality and can pay for itself in the long run. Some enterprises that rush to purchase translation systems fail to realize that the terminology component is essential to achieving any degree of satisfaction from such a system. Many high-end systems account for this factor with sophisticated se­ mantic analysis, but unfortunately, enterprises frequently de­ mand that systems go into full operation before they are fully loaded. Even for indicative translation and surely for higher quality translation intended for detailed post-editing, termino­ logy loading is an essential step in the translation process. False anxieties and expectations with respect to MT are rife on several fronts. On the one hand, there are translators who not only fear the possibility of their livelihood being threatened by a machine—they also discount the possibility that the ma­ chine could have any effectiveness in any possible venue. Like the irrational nineteenth-century Luddites who resisted the intro­ duction of power-driven looms, many of these individuals refuse to participate in a logical evaluation of MT. On the other hand, there are companies that hope they can buy a black box that will solve all their translation needs without the interven­ tion of a human translator. Both the inordinate fears of the for­ mer and the rosy expectations of the latter are unrealistic. No company would purchase a spreadsheet or accounting program and expect the program to take over the work of the Accounting Department, nor would they expect to replace trained accoun­ tants with clerical staff, relying on the computer to do all the work without using skilled human operators. On the contrary, specialists use the program as a productivity tool, but only they are competent to structure data and produce the desired results. The same holds true of machine translation: in environments where translators and terminologists have been given the oppor­ tunity to plan or select their systems, maintain adequate termi­ nology databases, and control their preconditioning and post

productivity tools

false fears & expectations



editing procedures, the systems have a chance to function as efficient tools in the service of high-quality translation. 5


In reviewing the special characteristics of translation-oriented terminology management and the levels of computer interaction afforded by modern language processing systems, no mention has been made of Level 0— the translators who maintain that they do not need special tools to collect terminology or who contest the notion that documenting terminological information will pay off. Conceivably, these translators never forget a term once they have researched it, but this does not necessarily help their colleagues if they find themselves working in a team. For translators who don't have perfect recall, or who have to do work in groups, the benefits of documenting termino­ logical usage ought to be clear, but resistance to terminology management tools and procedures persists, arguably as a func­ tion of the apprehension engendered by having to learn yet an­ other complex computer application. Furthermore, industry spe­ cialists need to conduct additional studies to obtain concrete data supporting the economic viability of terminology manage­ ment as an integral component in the flow of work at the translator's workstation. Only when translators become con­ vinced that there are commercial as well as quality advantages to be gained from systematic terminology will the practice be­ come more widespread.

Level 0

economic viability


Hohnhold, Ingo. 1990. "Terminologieerarbeitung in eigener Regie." Übersetzungsorientierte Terminologiearbeit: Eine Grundlegung für Praktiker. Stuttgart: InTra. Roller, Hans. 1994. "Verfahren zur Beurteilung der Wirtschaftlichkeit von Terminolo­ giearbeit." Akten des Symposions: Terminologie als Produktivitätsfkator in volksmrtschaftlicher und betriebswirtschaftlicher Sicht. Köln: Deutscher Termino­ logietag e.V., 79-94. Melby, Alan K. 1982. "Multi-level Translation Aids in a Distributed System". North Holland Linguistic Series # 47 — Proceedings of COLING '82. Jan Horecky, ed. Amsterdam: North Holland Publishing Company, 215-220.

2.1.2 Medical Terminology Management CLOVE LYNCH 1



Structure and Function

Medical terminology is highly-structured and therefore lends itself to logical classification schemes (see 2.1 below). Docu­ menting medical terminology entries involves researching the availability of existing classification systems (standardized, if possible) in a given area of interest, constructing hierarchical models for conceptual representation of the terminology in its broad sense (again, adopting standardized models if possible), consulting quality resources, and implementing some type of automated information management system using the most ap­ propriate software for the project in question. 1.2

SEE Classification 1NFB 9:334 Medical Etymology 1NFB 18:346

The Healthcare Industry

The healthcare industry is information-intensive (Chute 1994). Efforts on the part of the international medical community to provide better services to more patients have created a need for more precise classification of diseases, symptoms, findings, in­ dications, diagnoses, and procedures. Moreover, the increased demand for accelerated exchange of this information throughout the medical community has led to greater worldwide cooper­ ation in the development of standardized representation models by which concepts and their associated terms may be classified. From computerized patient records to pharmaceutical product labels and clinical drug trial reports to technical documentation accompanying laboratory equipment, the range of subject areas included under the rubric of medical terminology is vast. Consistency in the use of these terminologies is essential for expedient and accurate dissemination of information. For exam­ ple, consistent use of language in drug testing and surveillance is the key to the interchange of data in pharmaceutical research and development. On the basis of reports submitted by different national and international healthcare entities, regulators such as

national and international standards

healthcare entities



the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the World Health Organization (WHO) ensure compliance with existing safety standards and verify accountability with respect to such things as procedures and devices used during pre-market drug testing. Guidelines for such reports stipulate the use of specific language (e.g., style and terminology). The scope of the guide­ lines is continually growing and diversifying to include broader areas and, hence, more terms as well. 1.3

Project-Oriented Management

Projects that document specific subdomains of medical termi­ nology must therefore observe the overlap between subdomains in order to create records with global and not just local utility. Because many terminology management efforts are underway simultaneously in the healthcare industry, an integral part of project planning should include research into existing projects and the investigation of cooperative management strategies in an effort to avoid redundancy, improve specificity and broaden content scope. Large-scale documentation projects are best accomplished by a team that consists of—or has access t o subject experts (clinicians) as well as to a wide variety of other resources. Large thesauri of internationally standardized ter­ minology that follow particular representation schemes (as listed in 2.1) can be found in a variety of media, including CD-ROM, magnetic tape, floppy disk and, of course, print. 2

cooperative management strategies


Healthcare informatics deals with processing the ever-increasing volume of information generated by biomedical research and development. Representation schemes for this information have taken full advantage of both the logical structure of medical language and new computing technology, allowing for the crea­ tion of complex indexing and classification systems. 2.1

Terminology Encoding Standards

Encoding medical terminology encompasses a number of repre­ sentation schemes, all involving the conversion of a medical event description (for instance, "arm fracture") from an unstructured, verbatim form to a limited, structured form

healthcare informatics



according to conventions specified in a meta-thesaurus. These meta-thesauri consist of descriptive information in the form of knowledge bases that map terminological data to alphanumeric codes and symbols for multidimensional representation. This information modeling approach embeds the semantic content of a particular message, or terminological unit (i.e., the medical event description), in the codes. This kind of coded information includes diseases, procedures, organ and body systems, sub­ stances, devices, and other instances of terminology used in the healthcare industry. For example, as explained by Côté et al. (1993), medical event descriptions can be conceptually repre­ sented as procedures performed on sites that make known result-findings, with a variety of terms falling under these three categories. Thus, in the case of an "arm fracture" event, an Xray examination (procedure) performed on the arm (site) makes known a fracture (result-finding). Coding represents a response to large-scale information man­ agement needs, such as compliance with regulatory standards for message representation when reporting, evaluating, or com­ paring data. For reporting purposes, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires coding of adverse drug reaction (ADR) terminology according to the COSTART (Cod­ ing Symbols for Thesaurus of Adverse Reaction Terms) thesau­ rus, which contains approximately 1,200 codes (PIRI 2). The World Health Organization stipulates ADR coding for many European countries and Japan according to the WHOART (World Health Organization Adverse Reaction Thesaurus) sys­ tem, which is also used by a few US drug companies. WHOART contains approximately 1,450 codes. Other current coding systems include: • The College of American Pathologists' Systematized Nomen­ clature of Medicine (SNOMED) with over 145,000 codes • The World Health Organization's International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinically Modified (ICD-9CM) • The National Library of Medicine's Unified Medical Lan­ guage System (UMLS) • The READ system, developed by the National Health Ser­ vice of Great Britain • The Gabrieli Nomenclature

medical event description

SEE Thesauri Vol. II, 6.1

coding systems

2.7.2 MEDICAL TERMINOLOGY For drug regulatory data processing, some systems are used in combination with each other, pairing an adverse drug reac­ tion terminology (such as COSTART or WHOART) with mor­ bidity terminologies (such as ICD-9 and ICD-9-CM) to better capture complex concepts (ICH Ml EWG 4). One obvious con­ sequence has been the development by organizations of "inhouse" or "home-grown" terminologies to supplement existing systems with more complete classification categories, better links between concepts, and overall improved functionality. In a recently published study (Chute et al 1996), the Computer-Based Patient Record Institute's (CPRI) Work Group on Codes and Structures compared the content coverage of the most prominent medical information classification systems in use at the time the study began (1993). These included the then current versions of the American Medical Association's (AMA) CPT (Current Procedural Terminology), the ICD-9-CM, ICD10, North American Nursing Diagnosis Association (NANDA) system, READ 2, SNOMED III, and UMLS 1.3. Though the study criteria focused on content rather than system design or functionality, and were limited in many respects by inherent features of the study design, the authors conclude that "...no existing clinical classification system presently captures the scope of clinical description that minimally describes patient findings and interventions. " Some systems (notably SNOMED) were observed to capture the content of particular domains bet­ ter than others. A significant observation made by the authors was that the structure and organization of classification systems is as important a factor in the functionality of these systems as content coverage. These findings indicate the need for further study of other aspects of medical event classification not treated in this landmark paper. There is currently much active cooperation between repre­ sentatives of the medical communities in Europe and the United States with respect to standard coding systems for various sub­ sets of medical terminology. Technical Committee 251 of the Comité Européen de Normalisation (CEN/TC 251) and the Healthcare Informatics Standards Planning Panel of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI/HISPP) have launched multiple efforts aimed at standardizing conceptual

163 combined systems

CPRI study

international cooperation



models for the overall representation of semantics in the health care industry. One important effort aimed at the development of a compre­ hensive and highly functional classification system for interna­ tional regulatory use is the Medical Dictionary for Drug Regu­ latory Affairs (MEDDRA). Under the direction of the Inter­ national Conference on Harmonization of Technical Require­ ments for Registration of Pharmaceuticals for Human Use (ICH) and the Council for International Organizations of Medi­ cal Sciences (CIOMS), the MEDDRA initiative is by far the most widespread yet unified medical terminology effort aimed at producing a single classification system for a specific set of domains (pharmacovigilance, pharmaceutical product informa­ tion). MEDDRA evolved from the UK Medicines Control Agency's terminology (ADROIT), which included terms from COSTART, WHOART, ICD-9 and ICD-9-CM and which was regarded as the best designed system with respect to data entry and retrieval. Other systems were reviewed as candidates to be used as the basis of the new terminology. However, none were found to be as suitable as the ADROIT system. The alpha test release of MEDDRA (version 1.0) was accepted in October, 1994 by the ICH Steering Committee as the basis for a new medical terminology effort ( ICH Ml EWG 12). MEDDRA 1.5 (beta), running under Windows, now includes all data entry terms from WHOART, J-ART (the Japanese adaptation of WHOART) and ICD-9 and ICD-9-CM. While implementation of MEDDRA in the European Union, United States and Japan is not likely to be a requirement for some time, it is envisioned as a facilitator of electronic information exchange for the inter­ national pharmaceutical community (Chute et al. 1996:18). 3



Medical terminology is represented and documented for pur­ poses of storage, retrieval, and interchange. Terminology man­ agement software programs are enhanced database management tools that facilitate the input, manipulation, and output of infor­ mation, and should be considered essential to the success of any large-scale documentation project. While certainly a tenable solution, development of a terminology database de novo using

SEE Database Management Vol. II, 8.1.1



any given database package not specifically adapted for that purpose involves the creation of elaborate search and retrieval mechanisms that may eventually exceed the capabilities of the package in question. 3.1 Terminological Entries A medical terminological entry should be organized for opti­ mum reference utility, readability, interchangeability, and flexi­ bility, using a terminology database management software pack­ age that offers a range of record-layout options and the appro­ priate manipulation capabilities for the task at hand. An indepth evaluation must be made of the kinds of information that will be stored over the course of a particular project so as not to input extraneous material or overlook anything that might prove important later. 3.1.1 The Skeleton Entry Development of a structured record format for a large database begins by designing a standard input template, which will be re­ trieved repeatedly. The format of this template, or input model, should take into account all the potential data categories, or data element fields, needed to store information, so as to limit modifications to the template later. It is infinitely easier to plan ahead for possible future information storage and retrieval needs than it is to retro-design a large portion of a partially complete database (Lynch and Rudder 1994). A template for the entry discussed below includes index fields for each lan­ guage and term-type and text fields for definitions, references for the definitions, and term entry responsibility for purposes of accountability (Figure 1). This template was designed after a careful evaluation of how information should be categorized to meet the particular storage and retrieval needs of the project at hand. Delimiters (represented here by angle brackets) distin­ guish between the various types of fields in the input model and are transparent in the user interface.


Entry Structures Vol. II, 8.1.3

template design SEE

Data Categories Vol. II, 8.1.2



< COSTART/symbol> < COSTART/category >

index field for index field for index field for index field for index field for index field for index field for index field for

< Responsibility >

text field for L1 headword definition text field for L1 bibliographic source text field for label assigned to team members

< Spanish >

< Responsibility >

L1 headword L1 headword synonym L1 field term code L1 field term L1 preferred term code preferred instance of L1 headword COSTART symbol COSTART category

index field for L2 headword index field for L2 headword synonym index field for preferred instance of L2 headword text field for L2 headword definition text field for L2 bibliographic source text field for label assigned to team members

Reprinted by permission of Family Health International

Figure 1: Sample Template, Full Term Entry 3.2 The Full Terminological Entry The sample entry in Figure 2 was created using the program MultiTerm 95™ for Windows at Family Health International, a family planning research organization. The entry is one of se­ veral used to document clinical and procedural term information for a multilingual, in-house database. Multiterm software allows entries such as this to be indexed by any criteria following the index fields (Figure 1). There are two levels of language present in the example. The English headword acute nephritis has been created as an instance of the coded Preferred Term ACUTE NEPHRITIS, NOS (acute nephritis not otherwise specified). The Spanish notations nefritis aguda and nefritis aguda no especificada de otra manera are translated equivalents of the same

record indexing



categories that maintain the dual level of preferred use and instance of preferred use , often referred to as field use. While this example represents an interlingual application of the indexing feature, an equally appropriate layout could be con­ ceived for a monolingual database designed to represent differ­ entBoth levelsEnglish of language. and Spanish language groupings include a INF headword (acute nephritis and nefritis aguda, resp.), a synonym (acute glomerulonephritis and glomerulonefritis aguda), a pre­ Source ferred term category (ACUTE NEPHRITIS, NOSandNEFRITIS Identifiers AGUDA, NEOM), a definition, a bibliographic source identifier INFB 17:349 (HWsm1990)and a responsibility field, which lists the person(s) credited with the definition. The English word acute and the INF Spanish word aguda are entailed terms, i.e., terms that occur Language within the definitions in this entry, but that also appear else­ Identifiers where in the database as headwords in entries where they are INFB 16:348 defined as discrete concepts. Each entailed term is set off from Entailed the rest of the text by an opening delimiter (its respective lan­ Terms guage identifier in square brackets) and a closing delimiter (a INFB 14:346 pair of angle brackets, which is in effect an empty attribute identifier). This convention enables the user to cross-reference a term from its appearance in a definition field to the full entry where it is defined. The field for the bibliographic source iden­ tifier also serves as a pointer in that it is treated as any other indexed headword and can be linked to the full record for the reference source in question. It should also be noted that the proprietary coding categories included as index fields provide a concrete link for locating each term entry in its position with­ in the global hierarchical classification system. 4


The current flow of information in the healthcare industry de­ mands complex representation schemes and sophisticated data management strategies. While automated terminology manage­ ment projects of any nature should involve planning, the level of organization in large-scale projects requires a team approach. Preliminary investigation into existing management strategies and classification systems is essential. Specialized database management software is a key resource for handling a large



Figure 2: Full Term Entry



2.1.2 MEDICAL TERMINOLOGY body of information, and should offer features that will accom­ modate both the logical structure of medical terminology and any of the current coding systems recognized internationally. Conscientious planning of a record layout in any software pack­ age should anticipate future information handling needs in an effort to avoid obsolescence of a particular term entry format and a subsequent overhaul of an entire terminology database. Citing a successful project under development, the MED­ DRA system should be regarded as the current standard classifi­ cation system in the field of drug regulatory affairs, and its progress should be followed as a model for large-scale harmoni­ zation efforts. Short of using the MEDDRA application itself, its complex multiaxial and hierarchical classification structure can be emulated, whether the end result is implemented using a relational database (MEDDRA's current structure) or a freeformat, neural network-based application such as MultiTerm for Windows. 5

project planning strategies



Agency for Health Care Policy and Research 2101 E. Jefferson Street, Suite 401 Rockville, M.D. 20852, USA Tel: (301) 594-1483 Fax: (301) 594-2333 HISPP Task Force on Codes Simon P. Cohn, M.D., Chair Kaiser Permanente One Kaiser Plaza Oakland, CA 94612 Tel: (510) 271-6461 Fax: (510) 272-6414 CPRI James Campbell, M.D. Dept. of Internal Medicine University of Nebraska 600 S. 2nd Street Omaha NE 48148-3333, USA Tel: (402) 559-7505 Fax: (402)559-6114

CPRI Christopher Chute, M.D., Dr.Ph. Mayo Clinic Foundation 200 First Street Rochester MN 55905, USA Tel: (507) 284-5506 Fax: (507) 284-0517 Comité Européen de Normalisation (CEN)/ Technical Committee (TC) 251 Dr. Georges de Moor, Chairman University Hospital of Ghent Department of Medical Informatics 5K3 De Pintelaan 185 9000 GHENT BELGIUM Tel: +32 9-240-34-21 Fax: +32 9-240-34-39



College of American Pathologists 325 Waukegan Road Northfield, IL 60093-2750, USA Tel: (708)446-8800 Fax: (708) 925-1329 Technical Terminology Service Family Health International P.O. Box 13950 Research Triangle Park, NC 27709 USA Tel: (919)544-7040 Fax: (919) 544-7261 Institute for Medical Informatics University of Hildesheim D-31141 Hildesheim, Germany Tel: 4-49 5121 883 770 Fax: +49 5121 869 281 National Health Service Centre for Coding and Classification Woodgate, Loughborough Leicestershire, LE11 2TG United Kingdom Tel: +0509 211411 Fax: +0509 211611


Practical Information Resources, Inc. Michael C. Joseph, V.P., Development & Information Services P.O. Box 71398 Durham, NC 27722-1398, USA Tel: (919) 479-0940 Fax: (919) 477-0400 United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Kathryn A. Huntley 5600 Fishers Lane, Rm 1645B Rockville MD 20857, USA Tel: (301) 594-6401 Fax: (301) 594-0829 World Health Organization (WHO) Avenue Appia CH-1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland Tel: +33/5040 9085 Fax: +33/5022 7910 746

REFERENCES Chabner, Davi-Ellen. 1991. The Language of Medicine. 4th ed. Philadelphia: Saunders. Chute, Christopher. 1994. In "Overview of U.S. Activities in the field of terminology, semantics, and knowledge bases." Working Meeting between ANSI HISSP and CEN TC 251 Working Group 2. Washington, D.C. 14-16 Oct. 1994. Chute, Christopher G. et al. 1996. "The Content Coverage of Clinical Classification Systems." Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association 3: 224-233. Côté, Roger A. et al. 1993. SNOMED International: Introduction. Northfield: College of American Pathologists. Lynch, Clove, and Brenda Rudder. 1994. "Issues in Translation of Medical Terminol­ ogy." Proceedings of the 18th Annual Practical Conference on Communication of the East Tennessee Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication. 3-4 Nov. 1994. Oak Ridge TN: ETC/STC. Practical Information Resources, Inc. (PIRI). 1993. PIRIcode™ Adverse Drug Event Autoencoder (Demonstration Version 1.01). Durham: PIRI.

2.1.3 The Terms and Arts of Patentese Wolves in Sheep's Clothing VERONICA LAWSON 1


Not so much technical as legal, the notorious patentese consists largely of odd usages of ordinary words or phrases. It may not look like terminology at all. But woe betide those who are taken in by these wolves in sheep's clothing, such as the trans­ lator who balks at an unfamiliar use of a familiar term and departs from the original. These sheep have teeth. International patenting has led to a largely international patent structure and typology. This chapter first outlines the purpose of patents and the basic procedure. General comments on patentese are followed by sections on five classes of termi­ nology. Four are patent-specific: broad terms, precision enhanc­ ers, structure makers, patent law terms. The fifth is normal technical terminology used in a normal way. The section on structure markers also covers the basic international structure. Despite the international orientation of this article, however, the focus is on English language usage against a backdrop of close­ ly related European languages (German and French). Although the discussion will be most clearly applicable to writers and translators working in English, analogous terminological pro­ blems exist in other languages.

international patenting


What is a term? Life. What is a r t ? Technology. In the patent field, the term of a patent is its maximum life. An art is a branch of technology. The phrase state of the art may come to mind, but this too is a false friend. "My new widget is really state of the art", an engineer might say. "Get me a patent". But to his patent attor­ ney, the state of the art is the prior art, the technology already

prior art



made known to the public. The widget is not new and not patentable. This is typical of patents: words masquerade innocently as general language, but prove to be highly specialized terms. A patent specification, too, is not what it seems. It looks like a technical description, but this is more law than engineering. It is a legal document, drafted with care by a professional trained in patent law. The technology is seen through a lawyer's eyes. Sometimes the very inventor cannot recognize the invention in the resulting document. 2.1

special language

The Purpose of Patents

The patent is an incentive to innovate, a carrot in the form of a stick to use on the competition. The authorities grant a tem­ porary monopoly so that an innovator has a reasonable time (the term of the patent, usually twenty years) in which to profit from the innovation while preventing others from doing so. The carrot is granted not so much for making the invention as for disclosing it. When the patent application is filed at the national patent office, therefore, the applicant accompanies it with a patent specification. This includes a description and claims. It describes the invention so that the public can use it when the patent lapses, but until that time, it gives the patentee (the patent's owner) as large and safe a monopoly as possible. The claims are there to define the extent of that monopoly ("to determine the extent of protection"). (They are not, as some private inventors have thought, claims to advantages, as in ad­ vertising: "My widget is the greatest".) 2.2

general language



A patent examiner then examines the application to see whether it conforms to the country's patent law. In the UK, for exam­ ple, the invention must among other things be new and nonobvious (it must involve an inventive step). Usually the exam­ iner will cite prior art, that is, contend that the invention lacks novelty or inventiveness in view of certain earlier documents {citations, anticipations). The applicant will probably need to amend the specification. When satisfied, the examiner accepts (or allows) the application. In some countries other parties can oppose the grant, and their objections must be overcome. The




patent office now grants a patent. The patent can now be used against competitors, who, however, will often fight back in court, challenging the validity of the patent. 2.3


Any word in the specification may now prove vital. In any dis­ pute the court will first construe the claims. If their language is not plain, however, the court may read them in the light of the specification. A patent specification can be its own dictionary, with ex­ plicit definitions of words that would otherwise have a normal meaning. (A court may even decide, at least in the UK, that a word's meaning has been changed implicitly by the general tenor of the document.) If the definitions are relevant to the invention, the claims should cross-refer to them with a flag such as as herein defined. They do not normally present a diffi­ culty to the terminologist or translator. Most patentese, however, consists of innocuous little words and phrases from general language, which have acquired dis­ tinct meanings from statutes, court decisions, or unconfirmed legal opinions: a hodgepodge of curious usages. They seem unrelated, but in fact almost all derive from the twin aims of the patent attorney—breadth and precision: breadth, to make it as hard as possible for competitors to circumvent the patent; and precision, to define the invention unambiguously relative to what is already known. These are "broad terms" and "precision enhancers", the wolves in sheep's clothing. Here we see the heart of patent drafting. "Be broad and precise", a patent agent says, "which is much harder than broad and vague" (Clifford 1978). Be broad and vague, and you may include known technology along with your invention. Then your patent is invalid, useless. Be narrow and precise, and you may not cover all your invention. Again your patent is useless: your competitor can circumvent it and use it with impunity. 2.4



broad terms precision enhancers

The Five Classes of Patent Terminology

The remaining sections of the paper give examples of the five classes of patent terminology. The first four consist of patentspecific terminology (if it can be called terminology):

classes of patent terms



• • • • •

Broad terms Precision enhancers Structure markers Patent law terms Technical terminology as it occurs in "normal", i.e., everyday technical discourse



The broad terms of patentese fall into two groups, generic terms and other breadth enhancers. 3.1

Generic Terms

Claim a screw, and your competitor can circumvent your patent by substituting a nail. If you claim fastening means, however, you will catch a screw, nail, pin, rope, slide fastener or any other fastening means. Fastening means is one of the generic terms frequently used in patents. It is made by attaching a function indicator, fastening, to a vague generic noun, means. Means is not the only such patent generic noun. Member, element, organ, device, apparatus, installation, equipment, system, mechanism may be used. But means is particularly fa­ vored, perhaps because it can be singular or plural. A door se­ cured with securing means may have one such means, or more, and it may be very convenient to leave that unspecified. Some patent writers are particularly liberal with the word. A main claim containing 15 occurrences of means is commonplace. The function indicator in English is often a gerundive (connecting means) or abstract noun (connection means). Some of the commonest of these are: • fastening/fixing/fixation • connecting • bearing • retaining • driving • guiding • locking Alternatively, the function indicator may be an adjective:

generic terms function indicator generic nouns




• resilient • pressure-responsive • temperature- or light-sensitive One might use resilient means instead of spring, light-sensitive element in preference to the narrower photocell or photoelectric cell, and means establishing fluid communication in­ stead of valve. The function indicator may even be a concrete noun:


• switch means • drive means • guide means Generic terms are versatile and very widely used. Almost any verb, noun or adjective is a potential function indicator. Patent professionals may even invent them for private use: spouse means for "husband, wife or the like"; winter coat means for a warm anorak. 3.2

Other Broad Terms

A number of other breadth-enhancing words and phrases are often used by patent professionals. They will not be favored by all or in all circumstances, but the following are common: • Hierarchies of words: Patent drafting is a constant choosing within hierarchies of words. Which is most appropriate in the given context: rod, or the broader arm, or the still broader limb? Or even the broadest of all, the plain and unadorned member? Member is often used alone, so that only the context defines the component: a first member and a second member, the second member being parallel to the first member. • Things that contain: In linguistics, container is a semantic primitive. In patents it may indeed be used instead of a more specific word like cup. However, it is only one of many words for things that con­ tain—and not necessarily the broadest. Again, there may be a hierarchy. For example, an enclosure might possibly contain a container, which might contain holders, each holding receptacles, and these might in turn comprise depressions, each pro­ vided with a dimpled base.





• Elementary words; parts of the body: A mechanical invention is frequently described in simple, even elementary words. Parts of the body are especially fa­ vored: arm, leg, body, head. Improbable combinations such as lips on noses are usually avoided: digits on limbs may be more acceptable than fingers on ears. • Comprise: The patent courts interpret this broadly, as include (possibly among other things), whereas a lay person might think it meant consist solely of. It is therefore often preferred to consist of and be composed of, even as a translation for French consister de or German bestehen aus. • -like: Box-like structure may be safer than box. • -able: Rotatable, capable of rotating, adapted to rotate or which can rotate tend to be safer than rotating, and connectible safer than connected. Adapted to means capable of a strange patent idiom which once led, in a patent relating to henhouses, to a claim for perches of special construction "on which the chick­ ens are adapted to sit" (Bouly 1994). • Being/wobei: Being or another present participle is often a convenient ren­ dering for a German wobei clause, as in: a pin being located in the hole and projecting from the housing. (Wobei is not whereby: it does not imply a causal connection.) • substantially: This too is interpreted more broadly by the courts than in general language. A substantially cylindrical member need not be nearly cylindrical, only broadly so. • fluid: This is often used instead of liquid, if a gas may also be suitable. Fluid-tight is preferred to watertight. • vapor: German Dampferzeuger is usually rendered steam generator. However, Dampf can mean steam or vapor. A Dampferzeuger

body parts





which generates, or might generate, sodium vapor is better called a vapor generator. 4


One way in which precision is enhanced is the use of brief definitions, to change a term's meaning within the patent document. Some other precision enhancers follow. • the, said: The definite article is often (not invariably) used only if what it qualifies has already been referred to or can safely be as­ sumed to be present. That is, it can act as a connector on its own. Many writers, however, prefer to specify the said, or even to put said alone, thus omitting the article altogether. (Compare French ledit, and occasionally German genannt.) Phrases like a said conductor are also used, where more than one conductor has been specified but only one is now intended. • known: known is used liberally to distinguish the known from the novel. • a plurality of: This is preferred to a number of, which might be held to cover just one. It is also preferred to several as a rendering of French plusieurs or German mehrere, because these words may mean only two or three. • which: Which is used to ensure that an antecedent is clear: into which channels the pins can be inserted, or a rib projecting from the side face, which rib is... • respective'. If there is one rib on each arm, the arms bear a respective rib makes this clear. The arms bear ribs does not. • elongate: A long, thin object like a pencil might be described as elongate rather than elongated, in case the latter implied that it had once been shorter.

definitional elements

178 5



Patent documents can be long and complex, and different readers may be looking for different sections. The Ariadne's thread which guides the traveller through the labyrinth is a system of structure markers. These signal the underlying text structure of a patent specification, showing at a glance where the reader is in the document. These structure markers may be major or minor. 5.1

text structure

Major Markers: Section Flags

The major markers are stereotyped section flags (usually openers) which identify various sections of the patent specifi­ cation. The usual sections follow, with their flags.

section flags

5.1.1 Title of the Invention This and the next three sections make up the preamble of the specification, which sets the context for the invention.


5.1.2 Technical Field This section is typically opened by a phrase such as The invention relates to, followed by repetition of the title. It may then be narrowed down with More particularly, it relates to, followed perhaps by the "prior-art portion" of the main claim. One of the curious conventions in patents is that more particularly normally means particularly.

subject field

5.1.3 Background Art This describes what is known (the prior art), as an aid to "the understanding, searching and examination of the invention" (Patent Cooperation Treaty, Rule 5, 1, ii). It probably cites documents reflecting the state of the art, and indicates disad­ vantages. It is flagged by known or conventional, which means that the cited art had already been made available to the public at the time when the patent was applied for.

prior art

5.1.4 Disclosure of the Invention This section is supposed to "disclose the invention, as claimed, in such terms that the technical problem (even if not expressly stated as such) and its solution can be understood, and state the advantageous effects, if any, of the invention with reference to

disclosure consistory

THE TERMS AND ARTS OF PATENTESE the background art" (Patent Cooperation Treaty, Rule 5, 1, iii). First the underlying problem or object is stated. A typical true example reads, "The object of the invention is to provide a method of making a glove which on the one hand is inexpensive and on the other hand is light and supple." The solution (invention) then follows, usually expressed in a consistory clause (statement of the invention), viz.: The invention consists of or According to the invention, followed by a recital of the main claim or reference to it. Preferably or Advantageously introduces subsidiary features from the subclaims. Only after this are the actual advantages of the invention usually discussed. This ends the preamble of the specification.

179 clause

5.1.5 Recital of Figures A formula such as The invention will now be described by way of example with reference to embodiments illustrated in the accompanying drawings announces the recital of the figures mak­ ing up any drawings. In a chemical patent the examples are listed instead.


5.1.6 Detailed Description of the Invention The specific (or particular) description now begins. It describes "at least one way of carrying out the invention claimed, using examples where appropriate and referring to the drawings, if any" (European Patent Convention, Rule 27, 1, f). It is opened by a flag such as the clause: 'As Figure 1 shows or With reference now to Figure 1. Successive embodiments tend to be introduced by references to the figures showing them. If Figures 1 and 2 show different embodiments, the second embodiment is flagged by, say, With reference now to Figure 2. The description may end with a statement of industrial applicability, showing how the invention may be applied (if this is not already clear); or with a comment on scope, such as Various modifications may be made within the scope of the inventive concept. 5.1.7 Claims The claims (the core of the specification) are heralded by Claims or a phrase such as / claim or What we claim is. Older French patents have instead a résumé, which may resemble a set of claims, but which used to function as an abstract.





5.1.8 Bibliographic Data The description and claims may be preceded or followed by details of the patent application, including the examiner's search report (the list of references cited against it) and details of parties concerned with the application. It is now typical for a separate front page to bear this data, numerical codes to iden­ tify it, and an abstract. Alternatively, the search report may conclude the document.

search report

5.1.9 Abstract The abstract is for purposes of technical information. It is intended to give a clear, concise account of the technical disclosure, and to be "an efficient scanning tool, making it possible to assess whether there is a need to consult the patent document itself" (WIPO, Rule 6). In fact it is often very similar to the main claim. It may form part of the specification or appear in a separate publication.


5.1.10 Drawings The drawings may bear isolated words (the legend). Occasion­ ally there is an accompanying list of reference signs and of the features denoted by them. 5.2

Minor Markers

The minor markers are certain words or non-verbal features that occur very frequently in particular sections. For example, bulky and expensive are likely to be in the prior art section, simple and reliable among the invention's advantages. Refer­ ence numerals for components appear only in the specific des­ cription or, if in brackets, in the claims. Such features again help the reader scanning the document. 6


These are the terms likely to be found in bilingual patent dictionaries. Some have been introduced in Section 2: • patent (in UK formerly also letters patent) • term of a patent • art • state of the art, prior art




• patent attorney • patent application • patent office • patent specification • description • claims • patentee • patent examiner • inventive step • citation, anticipation • amend • accept, allow Others occur in Section 5.1 in the discussion of patent structure. Many more appear not in patent specifications, but in documents discussing them, such as correspondence with patent offices (official letters or actions, responses), instructions to attorneys, and pleadings in court proceedings. Examples are: • annuity, renewal fee • common general knowledge • date of conception (USA) • information disclosure statement (USA) • International Convention • licenses (sole, exclusive, of right, compulsory) • omnibus claim (UK) • patent of addition • person skilled in the art • priority date • restoration • revocation 7


Patent documents also use normal technical terminology in a normal way. This is the language of technical description, with some differences in the frequency of words and usages. This section draws on Moskovich and Caplan (1979). Patent specifications are impersonal. They largely avoid per­ sonal pronouns, do not use the imperative, e.g., as in operating

textual conventions person and tense



manuals, and tend to be written in the present tense. The main classes of vocabulary follow, with a few examples. 1. Construction •

names of major objects, particularly apparatus and machines: • motor, pump, reactor

their parts and details, especially: • containers • openings • passages

2. Function •

• •

function proper (mix, switch, seal, control, combustion), an important subgroup being forms of association (abut, fit, mount, engage, connect) variables: temperature,flow,pressure nature: mechanical, resilient, pharmaceutical, nutrient

3. Substances •

chemical names and names of materials, etc: air, hydrocarbon, titanium

4. Geometry, Motion, Position circle, circumference, axis, parallel, frustoconical, trapezoidal, sinusoidal, transverse, orientation, right/left, forward/back, up/down, rotate, pivot, translate, terminal, remote or distal/proximal 5. Degree high/low, constant, slightly, at least, predetermined, appropriate 6. Properties of Invention or Prior Art saving, reliable, simplicity, precision, clean, economical 7. Names, etc. Proper nouns, addresses, trademarks




Features of patent terminology, along with some of their dan­ gers, have been outlined here with reference to English. In­ ternational patenting has rendered many of those features to a large degree international. It has also generated extensive refer­ ence libraries of useful translations, since a patent often pro­ duces a family of parallel foreign patents in different languages. Translators more accustomed to working with technical ter­ minology as used in non-patent environments need to remember the dangers of patentese. Most importantly, it is always wise to check the terms used against related existing patent documents to ensure that they conform to prior usage. The bench-level usage with which a writer is familiar may well be inappropriate for patents. The design engineer's diaphragm spring may well be a more generic plate spring or disk spring here, and the as­ sembly line worker's key-hole tab may have become an elastic tab. REFERENCES

Bouly, Henri Georges. 1947. Reported in the Proceedings of Chartered Institute of Patent Agents, 1946/47, London. Clifford, F. Alan., p.c. 1978. Quoted in Lawson, V. "Patents, the translation of a social contract". The Incorporated Linguist, 17:2. Lawson, Veronica. 1979. "A Typology of Patents, or: The Language of Patents with Particular Reference to Computer-Aided Patent Translation." Annex 1 of Final Report on EEC Study Contract TH-21, Commission of the European Communities, CETIL/205/80. Lawson, Veronica. 1983. "The Language of Patents: A Typology of Patents, with parti­ cular reference to Machine Translation". Lebende Sprachen 2. Moskovich,Wolf, and Ruth Caplan. 1979. "Distributive-statistical techniques in linguistic and literary research." Proceedings of the 1978 Computers in Literary and Linguistic Research. Birmingham: Ass. f. Lit. & Ling. Computing. World Industrial Property Organization (WIPO): ICEREPAT Manual, ST, 12/A(E). General Guidelines for the preparation of abstracts and patent documents, 6.

2.1.4 Descriptive Terminology In the Social Sciences FRED W. RIGGS, MATTI MÂLKIA, AND GERHARD BUDIN 1


Terminology projects usually presuppose a well-established set of terms for the distinctive concepts of a subject field, as found in many scientific and technological domains. Or otherwise they presuppose a strong central organization capable of promoting new concepts and terms through traditional language standard­ ization. Often, however, research is carried out in areas where concepts are not well established and the pertinent terms are ambiguous. Terminologists can help authors working in such fields—which include virtually all of the human, social and behavioral sciences—to clarify the key concepts required for their work and to develop a vocabulary that can be used unam­ biguously to express their ideas succinctly and clearly. Such an approach has been developed during the past decade within the INTERCOCTA project. INTERCOCTA stands for International and Interdisciplinary Co-operation on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis. The project comprises the main activity of the International Social Science Council, Standing Committee on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis (ISSC/ COCTA), established in 1977. The Council represents all of the major global social science disciplinary associations and pro­ motes interdisciplinary cooperation. In the field of conceptual and terminological analysis, the ISSC cooperates with member associations through the ISSC/COCTA. The project is used as a demonstration model for this discussion of a descriptive ter­ minology. (For a complete list of relevant materials see Mälkiä and Riggs 1993). French and German versions of the INTER­ COCTA Ethnicity glossary have been integrated into the project in conjunction with hypertext and multimedia environments. The INTERCOCTA project is used as a demonstration model for this discussion of descriptive terminology.

social science terminology


2.1.4 DESCRIPTIVE TERMINOLOGY The descriptive approach has a learning orientation and thus pursues an educational goal. Consequently, we think of descrip­ tive terminology management as learning-oriented, or perhaps as "heuristic". By transmitting information about concepts and terms used in a subject field, its intention is to help scholars find better conceptual tools to work with and to avoid the use of confusing terms to designate the concepts they have in their minds. Through this process, we hope that scholars will be able to communicate their ideas more clearly and precisely. INTERCOCTA glossaries are available in both hardcopy and hypertext form, but this article will focus on the advantages of the hyper­ text environment for achieving heuristic objectives. In fields where standardized terms are not available and where there is even resistance to terminology standardization, descriptive terminology analysis can be very helpful. On the basis of the available literature, we may attempt to:

185 heuristic objectives INFO Hypertext 1NFB 13:341

nonprescriptive terminology

1. identify the concepts and concept-systems used by scholars working in a given subject field or in a given theoretical framework 2. supply information about the terms they use to designate these concepts 3. document this information with appropriate citations and bibliographic references 4. distribute this information to potential users or user groups 5. help users recognize the problems related to their current scholarly language and help them develop their language, thereby helping them improve its clarity and reduce its ambiguity 2



Getting Started

The first step in a descriptive terminology project involves identification of a subject field and representative documen­ tation of its literature. Although professional terminologists may give useful advice, the primary responsibility for this activity has to rest with subject-field experts themselves. The tasks they need to carry out include the following:

term/concept identification



1. identifying the key works in which the field's concepts have been used 2. identifying these concepts 3. describing (defining) these concepts 4. determining what words, phrases or symbols have been used as terms to designate them 5. selecting contexts to illustrate their use The materials compiled in this manner constitute a termi­ nological corpus for a field. Such a corpus provides the founda­ tion for all subsequent work, but of course the process of find­ ing material for a corpus must continue so as to reflect further development in the field. 2.2

Delineating the Subject Fields

The boundaries of most subject fields are fuzzy, especially when they involve research in two or more disciplines. In the social sciences, virtually every practical problem area is inter­ disciplinary. Furthermore, any field can be subdivided into nar­ rower subfields, each of which may be viewed by its exponents as a whole field. Since different criteria are used to establish a field, overlapping subfields often emerge. Terminologists and classificationists must therefore avoid thinking of any field as a rigid intellectual category. Disciplinary boundaries are useful only to the degree that potential users find them acceptable and helpful in their research and writing. Such users tend to group themselves into overlapping fuzzy sets that we may think of as discourse communities insofar as they share similar interests and really communicate with each other. In many fields, the concepts needed are still imprecise and fluid. Few agreements, or none, can be reached on the concepts themselves or on the terms used to designate them. Especially in such contexts, descriptive terminology management is needed to help members of a discourse community discover the con­ cepts they need and, by organizing the market place of usage, to cultivate a process that enhances clarity of thought and com­ munication. 2.3

terminological corpus

interdisciplinary concepts

imprecise concepts

Creating Conceptual Glossaries

The basic tool needed for this purpose is a conceptual glossary. Unlike a typical dictionary, its structure is not term-oriented. It

conceptual glossaries

2.1.4 DESCRIPTIVE TERMINOLOGY does not list words or terms and describe their various senses nor does it prescribe a meaning for each of them. Rather, it has an onomasiological (concept-to-term) structure, not found in lexicographical (traditional dictionary) entries. Its function is to help scholars designate the concepts, not to define words.

187 INFO Terminology Collections INFB 7:325

2.3.1 General Format for Data Elements When the concepts to be designated are drawn from a corpus of seminal works by scholars working in a given subject field, they can be described and contextualized. The defining charac­ teristics of each concept can be explicated, and the various terms used to name them can be listed. The following general format, as exemplified in Figure 1, p. 188, has been selected for the entries (or records) used in conceptual glossaries. These entries may be understood as database records or as nodes in a hypertext glossary. They include, among others, the following data categories: 1. notation designed to locate each concept in a systematic relation to other concepts 2. concept description 3. a set of terms that designate the concept in question, divided into three categories: UT for unequivocal terms, ET for equivocal terms, and ST for suggested terms 4. contexts from the scientific literature that illustrate the use of these terms in existing documents The main reason for this sequence of elements is that, in contrast to terminology standardization, no preferred term can be prescribed. The choice of any term to head an entry would inescapably convey the illusion that it is the preferred term for a given concept. In order to avoid this impression, conceptual description is given first, followed by several terms without showing preference for any of them. These terms are supported by concrete texts quoted from the relevant literature, indicating how, by whom, and in what theoretical contexts, the terms are actually used.

term contextualzation

SEE Data Categories Vol. II, 8.1.2

avoiding headwords | INFO J Headwords INFB 6:330



[ERNEN3] an ETHNIC COMMUNITY that is organized Cf. UT: ET: ST:


Classification scheme: Index: Tracings:

, , ,

, , , , , , , Personal revisions:

An ethnic group therefore is a collection of persons who occupy an ethnic platform (markers), recognize and value their common occupancy, share an identity, and are organized and therefore have a common interest in maintaining their association. (Jackson 1979, 5)

Ethnic group signifies an ethnic category that has acquired the additional characteristics of identity and organization. (Jackson 1979,33) Created 1985-08-31 OR

Figure 1: Simplified Example of the Concept Node for Ethnic Organization. (Alphanumerical codes inside angle brackets represent buttons via which users may acquire more information on the subject (Riggs & Mälkia 1992a, node [ERNEN3])). When glossaries like this are constructed, established termi­ nological resources like vocabularies, dictionaries, terminology databases, thesauri and information systems provide a good starting point, but we must also be open to conceptual changes reflected in research reports, articles, or even oral communica­ tion. Descriptive terminology management provides efficient methods for documenting conceptual changes and presenting

dynamic documentation



them in a user-friendly way through electronic or printed forms. 2.3.2 Types of Terms Another important criterion for conceptual glossaries, as exem­ plified in Figure 1, is the way in which the available terms are classified to help users identify the most convenient and least ambiguous terms to use in the light of their own purposes and anticipated audiences. In our example terms that identify only one concept in a given discourse community are called unequiv­ ocal terms (UT). However, when a term is marked as ET (equivocal term), potential users know that ambiguity is possi­ ble because the same word form can also designate other con­ cepts within this field of work, and cross-references to records for the other meaning(s) of each equivocal term are needed. A third type of term is more complex. When the editor concludes that all terms in use for a concept are unsatisfactory, additional terms may be suggested. However, such suggested terms (ST) should not be viewed as recommendations or pre­ ferred terms. In Figure 1, the term organized community is sug­ gested as a convenient term that might be used for the concept described in this record. Such recommendations should properly come from specialists in a field, not from terminologists or the editor of a conceptual glossary.

unequivocal terms equivocal terms

suggested terms

2.3.3 Citations and Source Information Besides conceptual descriptions and terms, citations are needed to illustrate the use of each quoted term. Figure 2 shows a selection of contexts quoted from the literature to support the concept record for ethnic organization or ethnic group organiza­ tion (concept [ERNEN3] in Figure 1) described in Figure 1. In this example, each context is preceded by a bibliographic code in the form of a button from which users can jump to the full bibliographic citation—e.g., from to the source node for John Porter's article in Glazer and Moynihan (1975— see Figure 3).

SEE Contexts 1.3.3:80 INFO Source Identifiers INFB 17:345



An ethnic group therefore is a collection of persons who occupy an ethnic platform (markers), recognize and value their common occupancy, share an identity, and are organized, and therefore have a common interest in maintaining their association. (Jackson 1979, 5)

The communal group which controls the center need not represent a majority of the polity but is usually the largest constituent group. (Esman 1975, 394)

Communal group and minority group are synonymous with ethnic group (Jackson 1979, 26)

In my view, much can be gained by regarding this very important feature as an implication or result, rather than a primary and definitional characteristic of ethnic group organization. (Barth 1969, 11)

The most important part of the program, though, was the giving of grants to ethnic organizations to help them preserve their culture. (Porter 1975, 287)

The fact that a segment of a cultural group becomes an ethnic group does not mean that all members of the cultural group thereby become an ethnic group. (Patterson 1975, 310)

Figure 2: A Selection of Contexts Quoted in the Concept Node for 'Ethnic Organization' (Riggs & Målkiä 1992a, node [ERNEN3].) All the sources identified in these nodes are reproduced in the bibliographic node illustrated in part in Figure 4 (p. 191). This list enables users to identify the range of documents con­ sulted in the preparation of a conceptual glossary and also to discover gaps that need to be filled in order to make the refer­ ence work more complete. 2.3.4

Conceptual Relations

In a conceptual glossary, there are several ways to present relations between different concepts. In our example they are presented by:

bibliographic nodes


Porter, John:

Cited in:


Ethnic Pluralism in Canadian Perspective. In: Glazer, Nathan & Moynihan, Daniel P. (Eds.): Ethnicity: Theory and Experience. Cambridge (MA): Harvard University Press, 1975. p. 267-304. p. 284 , , ; p. 287

Figure 3: A Source Node for Porter 1975 (Cited in Figures 1 and 2 and other concept nodes (Riggs & Màlkia 1992a, node [EB0032]))

Peterson, William: On the Subjugation of Western Europe. In: Glazer, Nathan & Moynihan, Daniel P. (Eds.): Ethnicity: Theory and Experience. Cambridge (MA): Harvard University Press, 1975. p. 177-208.

Porter, John: Ethnic Pluralism in Canadian Perspective. In: Glazer, Nathan & Moynihan, Daniel P. (Eds.): Ethnicity: Theory and Experience. Cambridge (MA): Harvard University Press, 1975. p. 267-304.'

Pye, Lucian W.: China: Ethnic Minorities and National Securities. In: Glazer, Nathan & Moynihan, Daniel P. (Eds.): Ethnicity: Theory and Experience. Cambridge (MA): Harvard University Press, 1975. p 489-512.

Seton-Watson, Hugh: Nationalism, Nations, and Western Politics. Washington Quarterly, 1979, Vol. 2, No. 1, p. 91-1

University of Hawaii, Ethnic Studies Program: Ethnic Studies Glossary. Unpublished memorandum, July 1982.

Figure 4:

A Partial Presentation of a Bibliographic Node (List of selected source documents used in the Ethnicity glossary (Riggs & Màlkia 1992a, node [EBOOOO]))



1. cross-references to related concepts 2. source records that link concepts used by an author and others within the same theoretical framework 3. class codes and systematic structures In terminology databases, especially in hypertext systems, these relations serve as the basis for conceptual browsing in that they identify concepts that are linked with one another in different ways. In this example, any term used in the concept description that is also described elsewhere in the collection appears in upper case. These terms are called entailed terms and can be accessed directly from the initial term entry in the hypertext version of the program. It is also useful to know where the terms treated in a given entry recur as characteristics used to describe other concepts. These instances are called "tracings" in the INTERCOCTA glossaries and can be accessed via the "tracings" buttons shown in the second segment of Figure 1.


conceptual browsing INFO Entailed Terms INFB 14:342

2.3.5 Classification Schemes At the macro-level, one or more classification schemes are needed. Each such scheme provides a framework for linking all or some of the concepts identified in a conceptual glossary so as to facilitate concept discovery. Portions of the scheme used in the ethnicity glossary are reproduced in Figures 5, 6 and 7 (pp. 193, 194 ). The scheme is based on Dahlberg's proposition that the four categories of form—entities, activities, properties, and dimensions (Dahlberg 1984)—should be used as a basis for classifying interdisciplinary concepts. The rest of the scheme follows disciplinary categories. The main goal is to facilitate user searches to find not only known concepts, but also related concepts for which no term comes to mind, and even to dis­ cover unreported concepts. This discovery serves to support recommendations for new concept records to describe them and for recommending new terms to designate these concepts. Computerization permits more than one classification scheme for a set of concepts, illustrating that the same concept may play different roles according to its context. This is not possible, of course, in a printed document where one cannot easily re-shuffle relations between entries.

classification as a tool for navigation

multiple classification schemes


Part Part Part Part Part Part

1 2 3 4 5 6

(A/E) (F/l) (J/L) (M/O) (P/X) (Y/Z)


General Concepts Activities Properties Ethnic Entities Fields of Application Milieu, Resources, Methods

Figure 5: The Main Classification Scheme Used in the Ethnicity Glossary (Riggs & Mälkia 1992a, part of the node start.txt)

Part 4: (MlO)


Anyone Characterized by Ethnicity Ethnic Collectivities Other Types of Ethnic Entities

Figure 6: Partial Presentation of the Second Level of the Classification Scheme Used in the Ethnicity Glossary (Riggs & Målkiä 1992a) 2.3.6 Personal Revisions and Revised Versions Descriptive glossaries can be distributed as read-only documents so that all users can communicate more easily with each other based on the same information. A personal revisions button available in each concept record node enables users to make a revised version of this record for personal use, while retaining the original record intact. Ideally, feedback in the form of revised versions would facilitate dynamic* updating and supple­ mentation of the conceptual glossary. 3



The hypertext version of the glossary used here as a demonstra­ tion model distinguishes between substantive nodes and control nodes, or between the substantive (informative) and control (guidance) functions of a single node. In a terminological con­ text, there are several kinds of substantive nodes. The most

substantive nodes



General outline



Types of Ethnic Collectivities

NED Communities characterized by their markers



Communities characterized by social level


NEN Communities characterized by structure unorganized community organized community General outline

Figure 7: Partial Presentation of the Bottom Level of the Classification Scheme Used in the Ethnicity Glossary (Riggs & Mälkiä 1992a, node [ESN])

2.1.4 DESCRIPTIVE TERMINOLOGY important are the concept nodes, as illustrated in Figure 1. Each such node contains the description of a single concept, plus various kinds of relevant information pertaining to it. The main function of this kind of node is to transmit information on the concept in question, and on the different terms used in the literature to designate the concept, together with a classification of their status with respect to equivocalness. This node may also have some control functions: to guide users to broader and narrower terms, for example. Other substantive nodes contain such information as source references for concepts. Control nodes, on the other hand, support access to the sub­ stantive nodes by means of alphabetical indexes, classification schemes (Figures 5, 6, and 7) and bibliographic references (Figure 4). On the multilingual level, hypertext technology can prompt jumps from any concept in one language to the nearest equiva­ lent concept in another language. Instead of pairing equivalent terms, the focus is on conceptual equivalence, and identifying the target language words or phrases that can most appropri­ ately identify the concepts presented in context in the source language. In projects with the kinds of fuzzy, shifting concept-field boundaries like those described here, thoughtful decisions by an editor are needed, perhaps with the help of an advisory board. It is necessary to determine whether any changes in the descrip­ tion of a concept merely clarify it without changing it, or whether in fact they identify a different concept, which conse­ quently requires a new entry. Degree of equivalency and termi­ nological directionality also affect the implementation of hyper­ text links between multilingual entries. 4


control nodes multilingual hypertext links

new concepts


Electronic communication networks in the form of Listserv mailing lists, computer conferences, electronic journals, and World Wide Web pages can be set up to organize interactions among the users of a conceptual glossary. Such networks can serve to:

communication networks

196 • • •


publicize existing glossaries so that they will actually be used by experts in the field facilitate continuous updating of existing terms and contexts establish and maintain contact with new discourse communi­ ties, which frequently create and use new terms and need tools designed to enhance communication

Translators and technical communicators may play a pivotal role by helping members of a multilingual discourse community develop parallel concepts and terms expressed in different lan­ guages. The development of descriptive terminology resources, together with the required linking between even the most dispa­ rate and culture-specific terminologies, requires extensive re­ search in the languages concerned and multilingual reference tools. Such conceptual glossaries assist indexers in creating pre­ cise multilingual indexing tools. Finally, students and other nonspecialists baffled by the arcane rhetoric of specialized fields can use conceptual glos­ saries to gain entry to specialized knowledge. Copies of such documents should be available in research libraries to help their users not only understand new findings, but also learn the major concepts, theories, and terms used in a field that is not yet totally familiar.

new discourse communities

translators technical communicators



Dahlberg, Ingetraut. 1984. Logical Arrangement of Concepts in Systematic Glossaries. Unpublished manuscript, March 1984. Malkiä, Matti, and Fred W. Riggs. 1993. Bibliography of Books and Articles on the INTERCOCTA Project. Unpublished manuscript, available through ftp.uta.fi, directory/pub/cocta/, file: INTERCOCTA-Bibliography. Riggs, Fred W., ed. 1985. Ethnicity. INTERCOCTA Glossary. Concepts and Terms Used in Ethnicity Research. Pilot Edition. Paris: International Social Science Council, Committee on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis. International Conceptual En­ cyclopedia for the Social Sciences, Vol. 1. Riggs, Fred W. 1988. The INTERCOCTA Manual. Towards an International Encyclopaedia of Social Science Terms. Paris: UNESCO. UNESCO, Reports and Papers in the Social Sciences, No. 58. Riggs, Fred W., and Matti Mälkiä. 1992b. Hypertext Manual for INTERCOCTA Nomenclators. Version 0.98 (1992-08-26; uncompleted). Hypertext document, distri­ buted through ftp.uta.fi, directory/pub/cocta, included into a file: ethnic.zip. verlOO.

Section 2.2 Standardization 2.2.1 Terminology Standardization Management Strategies SUE ELLEN WRIGHT 1


The first three articles in this section on prescriptive terminol­ ogy management treat the standardization of terminology as it is addressed within national and international standards organi­ zations. This article addresses organizational strategies to be used by task groups, outlines concerns that have in the past evolved out of strictly monolingual working environments, and discusses cooperative efforts to compile standardized termi­ nology across national and organizational boundaries in an effort to provide more effective terminological information to broader audiences. 2

SEE ISO 10241 2.2.2:203 International Standardization 2.2.3:209


Prescriptive terminology activity is usually carried out by tech­ nical experts in standardization committees within the frame­ work of a terminology sub-committee. Companies and similar entities that perceive a need to harmonize usage also adopt pre­ scribed terminology for in-house venues. In any environment, capturing the interest of subject-specialists and gaining access to their valuable time can be the primary challenge when it comes to enlisting their participation in terminology standard­ ization. Most standards organizations require the inclusion of standard definitions in their standards, and some organizations highly recommend the creation of special standards dedicated to the elucidation of the terminology used in subject fields, yet few categorically mandate the creation of such standards. Con­ sequently, the successful creation of terminology standards fre­ quently depends upon the efforts of dedicated individuals who have convinced (coerced and cajoled) their colleagues to devote some of their resources to this effort.

subject specialists



Obviously, subject experts must determine the terminology to be used in their fields. The assistance of terminology special­ ists is, however, highly useful in many environments. In some situations professional terminologists work closely with techni­ cal experts to prepare terminology standards. Reports on these work groups claim that interactive cooperation between termi­ nology specialists and subject specialists produces more effi­ cient, user-friendly standards (Nykänen 1993). In the environment of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), for instance, staff managers, who are both technical writers and staff editors, assist committees in prepar­ ing their standards. Although not trained as terminologists, staff managers are nonetheless very familiar with the fine points of the standard format for ASTM terminology standards and gen­ erally ensure that definitions meet the criteria set down in the Society's Form and Style Guide. Careful conformance to layout procedures in particular facilitates the automatic generation of the Compilation of ASTM Standard Definitions. In companies, terminology standardization is frequently con­ ducted as a collaborative effort among different departments on the one hand and technical communicators (writers, translators and information specialists) on the other. In ideal environments, harmonized, company-specific terminology is made available online in all relevant languages for use by everyone who pro­ duces documents or manages data. Online availability may well entail multiple platforms and even worldwide network support. The interaction of subject experts, information specialists, and trained terminologists ensures the highest degree of reliability with regard to the final terminology product, and feedback from the various users contributes to maintaining up-to-date, accurate data. Like quality assurance, effective enterprise-wide terminol­ ogy management depends significantly on the degree of support the activity receives from high-level management. 3

professional terminologists

editorial staff

company-wide terminology management


The fundamental procedures and strategies described for multi­ lingual environments apply for monolingual activities as well: terminology sub-committees, regardless of their venues, must define the field to be covered and the target audience for their

SEE Term Selection 1.1:13



standard, collect terms, establish concept systems, and write SEE definitions. Consequently, the principles laid down in ISO Concept 10241 as described by Strehlow are readily applicable for Systems monolingual terminology work as well. The articles from Sec­ 1.4:89 tion 1 of this Handbook provide clear guidelines for the critical steps in this process. Since the problems inherent in interlingual Terminoloharmonization and translation loom so large in multilingual en­ gical vironments, however, there are significant issues that have Definition come to light within the framework of practical monolingual 1.3.1:63 terminology management that are sometimes overlooked with respect to multilingual environments. Multilingual terminology management addresses the prob­ cost savings lems involved in concept and term harmonization across lan­ quality guage barriers. Nevertheless, conceptual variations apply in assurance monolingual environments as well. Different companies, even different departments within a company, frequently use differ­ product ent terms for the same concepts. This practice results in misun­ liability derstandings that waste time and money and can also lead to lapses with respect to quality assurance. Furthermore, product liability concerns, particularly with respect to customer safety and environmental protection laws, have led standardizers and manufacturers alike to appreciate the value of carefully defining their terminology in order to protect company interests in the event of legal challenges. The need for harmonization in monolingual environments monolingual becomes particularly apparent in standards organizations where interdiscithe same words may be used for similar, but nonetheless subtly plinary different concepts in diverse fields or subfields. These incon­ harmonization sistencies become readily apparent if all the terminology treated by the committees working in an organization is collected into an alphabetical compilation (ASTM 1994). For instance, the 1994 issue of the ASTM Compilation lists thirty definitions for the word lot as it is used by at least 15 different committees. One solution that has been proposed for this problem is the formulation of generic definitions that will satisfy the various closely related meanings of the word, accompanied by a parallel delineation of the specific characteristics that may differentiate its use in each committee where it does indeed have a special meaning (such as stating standard piece numbers or unique properties for given types of products). Implementing this idea



is problematic, however, because it necessitates enlisting both subject and terminology experts at an administrative level above that of the individual committee, which means in effect at a generic level above that of individual industrial and commercial interests. Unfortunately, obtaining funding at this level has proven extremely difficult. 4

generic definitions


Although potential users of standardized terminologies working in online computer environments frequently search in vain for multilingual standardized terminology resources, standardizing bodies have been slow to move toward providing such services. In some cases, their reluctance is attributable to the unavail­ ability of consistent data that can be successfully merged into a coherent database. In ISO, for instance, individual terminol­ ogy committees have had strong feelings about how they want their standards to look, which results in a high degree of stylis­ tic variability. Standards like the ASTM Form and Style Guide and ISO 10241: Preparation and Layout of Terminology Standards are designed to overcome this kind of incompatibility. Translators and technical writers, in other words, non-spe­ cialists who must use technical terminology on a regular basis, have long fantasized about creating a single, highly reliable, readily accessible online terminology resource. Unfortunately, the road to creating such a universal terminology resource is not an easy one. Holders of terminology collections are justi­ fiably concerned about the integrity of their data if it is merged into larger collections. Questions of copyright have yet to be re­ solved, especially in the context of collaging, the mixing of data collections to form new bodies of knowledge. Many of the collections that currently exist are proprietary in nature and represent an ongoing source of revenue for their holders. Be­ fore these materials will be made available online, mechanisms must be put in place to assure this continued source of income. (For this very reason, some resources are available on CDROM, but not online.)

style guides

SEE Copyright 4.1:281 Terminology Interchange Vol. II, 8.1.5




The chapters in this section of the Handbook emphasize the advantages to be gained from standardization. It is important to note, however, that there are significant limitations as well. Premature or inappropriate standardization should be avoided in very young domains or areas where extremely rapid develop­ ment is drastically changing the appearance of a discipline. Given the rate of change in today's world, however, this dis­ tinction can be difficult to gauge. Witness, for instance, the development of terminology used in the Windows™ operating system: although this is an extremely young domain compared to other areas of science, the threat of terminological chaos and the need to maintain uniformity in the user interface has in­ spired Microsoft® not only to try to standardize terminology in a wide range of languages (Microsoft 1993), but also to make this terminology readily available for access on the Internet. Terminology standardization represents a kind of borderline standardization function. If a governmental agency is involved, if terminological distinctions are written into law, or if national standards have validity as national law, standardized terminol­ ogy must be used in all applications. Typical examples include product quality and safety regulations. The legal status of stan­ dardized terminology also varies from country to country. Otherwise, standardized terminology only applies specifically to use in the standards of the normative body in question. Terminology standards frequently are compiled by collecting all the terminology that appears in a technical committee's stan­ dards, and they achieve their prime utility by determining which terminology will be used in future standards—"... glos­ saries may be needed to prepare effective standards, and effec­ tive standards lead to glossaries which can be used as a basis for future standards" (Sager 1990:126). Although the standards organization may enforce the use of the terminology in its own documents, outside the immediate standards arena, standardized terminology takes on a different value in that it can be treated as if it were high-quality descriptive terminology and evaluated along with other available terminology resources. For instance, standardized terminology is very likely to represent a higher register than would be used for bench-level applications or in customer-service literature. As is always the case, a target

premature standardization

scope of standardized terminology

non-standards venues



audience analysis must be carried out to determine the appropri­ ate terms to be used in any given context. International standard terminologies represent compromises among different national groups, many of whom are not native speakers of the language in which the standard is written (most frequently English or French). Although these standards may be very useful for studying a domain and for familiarizing oneself with the concepts in the field, it is essential that translators and technical writers also consult national standards and primary references in the field in order to ensure that the terminology used will meet the terminological expectations of the target audience. Even when composed by native speakers, standards written in world languages (such as English, French, and Spanish in particular) may not be universally useful in all coun­ tries where these languages are spoken. Some standards (for instance the ISO 9000 family of quality assurance standards) have actually been "translated" from ISO English into Ameri­ can English for use in the United States because subject special­ ists working there do not comprehend or accept the original. European Spanish standards or ISO standards in European Spanish must often be retranslated for South American audi­ ences. As a consequence of these several concerns, standardized terminology must be carefully evaluated before adopting it in any given context.

ISO English


ASTM Committee on Terminology. 1994. Compilation of ASTM Standard Definitions. 8th Ed. Philadelphia: ASTM. ASTM. 1989. "Part E: Preparation and Use of Terminology in ASTM Standards." Form and Style for ASTM Standards. Philadelphia: ASTM. Microsoft. 1993. The GUI Guide: International Terminology for the Windows™ Interface. Redmond, Washington: Microsoft. Nykänen, Olli. 1993. "The Cost Effectiveness of the Terminology Process," TermNet News, 20-23. Sager, Juan C 1990. A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.

2.2.2 ISO 10241: Preparation and Layout of Terminology Standards RICHARD A. STREHLOW 1


Standardizers are not generally expert terminologists. They are subject specialists who work in some discipline and often can­ not take the time to learn the intricacies of terminology manage­ ment. Nonetheless, they want their standards to be properly in­ terpreted and applied in order to produce and communicate valuable information. They also recognize the need to provide high grade terminology in order to better assure this result. International Standard ISO 10241 was designed to aid stan­ dardizers in meeting this need. Although it was originally con­ ceived as a tool for international standardizers, it also provides a valuable model for monolingual terminology projects at na­ tional levels and for similar terminology projects outside the standards community, particularly wherever prescriptive termi­ nology management is being conducted in companies, agencies, and organizations. This chapter is designed to encourage people involved in this kind of terminology management to obtain and use the standard. The description here does not substitute for the standard, but should promote and facilitate its ready under­ standing and application. 2

subject specialists

ISO 10241


Technical Committee 37, Terminology (principles and coordina­ tion) of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO/TC 37) produces standards on terminology for interna­ tional standardizers. The general motivation for such standards is to provide uniform methods in terminology: • To assist standards bodies in managing their terminology • To enhance the communication of the content and the world­ wide application of technical standards




To aid subject experts in achieving more effective terminol­ ogy management • To permit easier access to the varied fields of knowledge represented in international standards

Some specific factors motivated the development of ISO Standard 10241. First, within ISO itself, the ISO Central Secre­ tariat needed a structural framework for a terminology standard in order to implement a uniform Document Type Definition using Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML) for the publication of all ISO standards. A standardized form and style is an essential prerequisite for such a structural framework. Secondly, a standard on preparation and layout brings the style into conformance with contemporary lexical practice. Thirdly, quality control requires that there be a standard to permit easier evaluation of the terminology provided in terminology stan­ dards. Terminology standardization requires uniform methods to efficiently pursue practical and applied terminology manage­ ment and to produce coherent and consistent terminology. Uni­ form methods make harmonization easier in both multilingual and monolingual environments because uniform presentation facilitates comparison of term entries. Finally, without uniform methodology, it remains impossible or at least very difficult to combine terminology collections from the many ISO committees to create compilations of terminology, which would be the first step toward the creation of an ISO database of standardized ter­ minology. 3

uniform methodology


Writing a terminology standard requires a three-step process that should be followed systematically: 1. Planning the approach 2. Composing the standard 3. Presenting the data usefully 3.1


basic procedures

Planning an Approach

Planning an approach begins with a needs analysis. The target group must be defined and the subject delimited. Source mate­ rial must be analyzed, and the concepts to be considered must


2.2.2 ISO 10241 be listed and organized. ISO specifies English, French, and Russian for ISO standards, but in other environments, decisions need to be made on the language choices. Last, a schedule should be drawn up. To analyze needs, it is important to observe the working group's communication. Is communication in the field impeded? Must participants often ask about what a term means at meet­ ings? Is time wasted discussing or arguing about meanings of terms? These are some of the considerations for a needs analy­ sis. If the answer is yes to any of these questions, a terminol­ ogy standard is probably needed. Defining the target group may also be addressed with the aid of questions. Who will use the standard: specialists, stu­ dents, the general public, or others? Target group definition is closely related to needs analysis: do translators, technical writ­ ers, and other document users find the terms used in the group's documents ambiguous or misleading? What languages do they need for their work? Many other factors may be consid­ ered. How broadly must definitions be written? Are examples needed? Sometimes a subject field is too large or unwieldy to ap­ proach efficiently and it becomes necessary to delimit the field. Limiting the concepts to be considered serves to minimize in­ consistencies and omissions, to avoid an overly time-consuming project, to permit the resulting standard to better reflect the cur­ rent state of development in the field. Care must be taken, however, to ensure that the subdivision of a larger field into subfields is consistent and coherent. Arbitrary division can de­ feat the purpose of increased effectiveness, resulting in con­ fused users. This involves organizing the subject and its setting in a broader field, which requires two basic activities: 1. Precisely identifying the subject field and sub-fields 2. Listing terms and beginning to represent concept structures Analyzing usage can require consulting a wide range of sources including: • Laws and standards • Other types of documents, such as scientific and technical texts, teaching texts, or popular texts in the field • Terminology databases


needs analysis

target audience

delimiting the subject field INFO

Classification INFB 9:334




Human sources Usage should be evaluated with awareness of many factors, and bibliographic references should be accurately maintained for all sources. Choosing languages is especially important in international standards and in countries and trading communities where mul­ tilingual standards are essential. It also plays a role in interna­ tional companies and agencies. In the standards arena, of course, it is ideal to include all official languages used by the standards organization. However, practical limitations often exist, such as the lack of qualified native speakers and appro­ priate documentation in all the official languages. Many interna­ tional terminologies are written monolingually in the expecta­ tion that authoritative parallel standards will be created later. A schedule is especially important when time constraints are placed on the standardizing process. Planning should include a calendar of key dates. Events to be considered include the first draft resulting from a needs analysis and the other elements of the planning process. Timely distribution of meeting agendas and lists of terms with proposed definitions in the current revi­ sion is critical. 3.2

language selection


Composing the Terminology Standard

Issues to be considered when developing a terminology standard include several from the planning phase described above and anticipate some of the issues from the presentation phase that follows. The work of composing the standard, however, is closer to what most people think of as comprising terminology management: collecting data, selecting terms, structuring con­ cepts, and writing definitions. Collecting terminology data draws on the planning phase for a draft list of terms compiled during that phase. The next step is to arrange these terms in sets of related concepts. At this stage, consensus should be sought because disagreements here can nullify the prospects for a successful product. Once the concepts are identified and classified, a term list is established and the concepts are classified as to whether they are specific to a subject field, borrowed from a related field, or are taken from general language. The way terms are later defined or de­ limited to specific applications depends on this classification.

terminology management

SEE Term Selection 1.1:13

2.2.2 ISO 10241 Developing a concept system for a field is crucially impor­ tant. A harmonized concept system is the general goal in termi­ nology standardization. When definitions are written without considering related terms, the product almost inevitably will exhibit conflicts, inaccuracies, and inconsistencies. International Standard ISO 704 is invaluable in this central activity. Terminologists recognize that the process of structuring concepts and writing definitions is iterative. Each proposed definition clari­ fies the concept and simultaneously its relations to other con­ cepts. Sometimes this process requires modifying the concept scheme, but changes in the concept system can also alter related definitions. One final caution when writing definitions within a carefully structured concept system is that one must also ensure that the definition will nevertheless make sense if the user looks it up or quotes it out of context from its related terms. Writing definitions is not a philosophical exercise or simply a matter of following some general rules of form and style. It provides, however, an intellectual exercise for the subject spe­ cialist that will deepen understanding of the specialized field during the activity. ISO 10241 offers general rules to assist the writer, some of which include: • Begin the definition with the same grammatical form as the term. • State the class of objects to which the term belongs and list essential distinguishing characteristics. • Do not restate the term in the definition. • Do not begin with "term". • Use graphics to explain, but not in lieu of a verbal defini­ tion. Sometimes new terms are needed and must be coined. Usu­ ally these have already achieved some general use in an indus­ try and can be simply formalized in the standard. Standard 10241 addresses some of the possible problems: • Consult ISO 704, Clause 5, which spells out common prac­ tice for term formation. • If synonyms exist, state preference, if possible. • Follow appropriate word-formation principles and practice for the languages involved.


SEE Concept Systems 1.4:89

SEE Terminological Definition 1.3.1:63

INFO Standard Definitions 1NFB 12:340



Term Formation 1.2.1:25

208 3.3


The manner of presentation shall be stated because numerous variants may be chosen. The structure of the entries and their order should be clear to the potential user. Discussion should be provided regarding methods of accessing the terminology. For examples: • How to find a given term • How to obtain an overall view of the concept system • In a multilingual standard, how to find equivalents The number of data categories in a terminology standard should be specified. Three are required: the entry number, the term, and the definition of the concept. Numerous others may be included at the discretion of the standardizing group, e.g., symbol, subject field, references, and examples of usage. Several layouts for terminologies are appropriate and may be systematic, alphabetic, and a mixture of the two forms of presentation (mixed format). The two dimensions imposed by paper or screen may limit choice of display. The standard pre­ sents many examples. Entries in an alphabetic arrangement are specified as a simple numerical sequence (e.g., ... 141, 142, 143, ...). Systematic arrangements follow ISO 2145 (e.g., 18.3, 18.3.1, 18.3.2, ...). Other issues also addressed in 10241 include compound terms, graphic representation of concept systems, and the hand­ ling of complex cases. Although standard 10241 is a compre­ hensive treatment of important issues in the layout of a standard terminology, it is but one of a suite of standards that provide the serious terminologist with sound guidance (ISO 639, 704, 860, and 1087).

term retrieval

SEE Data Categories Vol. II, 8.1.2 INFO Terminology Collections 1NFB 1:325

ISO terminology standards


ISO 639:1988. Code for the representation of names of languages. ISO 704:1987. Principles and methods of terminology. ISO DIS 860:1993, International harmonization of concepts and terms. ISO 1087:1990. Vocabulary of terminology. ISO 2145:1978. Documentation — Numbering of divisions and subdivisions in written documents. ISO 10241:1992. Terminology standards — Preparation and layout.

2.2.3 Terminology Management in International Standardization ISO 472: Plastics — Vocabulary JEAN SCHRADE 1


This chapter is designed to demonstrate the evolution of termi­ nological needs in a standards environment based on ISO 472 as an instance of a prototypical document. The purpose of a technical standard is to specify conditions—in the plastics industry, these are usually numerical values representing prop­ erties—and to elucidate methods for ensuring the reproducibility of these values. Technical Committee 61 of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO TC 61), for instance, de­ fines its scope as follows:

technical standards

Standardization of nomenclature, methods of test, and specifications applicable to materials and product in the field of plastics Of the technical committees that still remain from those who took up their work in ISO in 1948, only a few have included the harmonization of their technical nomenclature in their scope of work. Up to that time, standards had, for the most part, only been created at the national level. Consequently, only a few experts had encountered the need to know and use terms in languages other than their native languages. ISO established three official languages: English, French and Russian. The Russian-speaking members took on the re­ sponsibility for preparing the Russian version of the standards for themselves, which left the Working Groups responsible for creating the English and French versions of the standards. It quickly became apparent, however, that the technical English and French language abilities of most experts were inadequate

technical nomenclature

ISO languages



for composing acceptable documents that meant precisely the same thing in both languages. 1.1

Early TC 61 Ballots

By the beginning of the 1950's, work on the first TC 61 stan­ dards treating mechanical materials testing procedures and spe­ cifications for producing test specimens had advanced to the point where the ISO Central Secretariat in Geneva was able to circulate them to members for ballot. The English version had been edited primarily by US or UK representatives, and the French version was produced in France. Both appeared to be absolutely correct when they were read on their own, but when the drafts were studied by plastics experts in countries where both languages were spoken, discrepancies turned up and vari­ ous negative comments were submitted. When the comments for the initial TC 61 standards came back, negative ballots that were registered on linguistic points complained that the terms used in the two ISO languages were not analogous. Finding the right terms wasn't easy: not all the technical terms needed for editing ISO standards on plastics are included in standard multilingual technical dictionaries. Besides this, not all French experts use the same technical terms for the same thing or the same process, and then there are Belgians, Canadians, and Swiss who have their own linguistic habits. The same principle is true for English regional variations as well: what a Texan feels is correct, an Englishman or an Australian may find to be imprecise or even completely wrong. 1.2

translation discrepancies

equivalent terms

Compiling a List of Problem Terms

As a result of these concerns, ISO/TC 61 convened a working group to resolve the negatives, to compile a list of harmonized equivalent terms to be used in English and French, and to make the list available to other working groups. The delegates in the working group very quickly came to the conclusion, however, that the resulting document was too important for it to remain an internal ISO/TC 61 list. They felt that it must be made avail­ able to a larger group of experts, a view that was particularly supported by smaller multilingual countries and in many cases non-French, non-English speaking smaller countries that had to

multilingual glossary



depend on both versions at different times. Committee members who happened to be fluent in combinations of English, French and Russian reported similar problems with Russian. 2


In order to meet these needs, the Working Group moved in the direction of producing an ISO Recommendation (International Standards as we now know them did not exist yet). In 1964, the list appeared in English, French and Russian as ISO R 194: "Plastics — List of equivalent terms". It contained 850 terms. ISO assigns serial numbers to standards without regard to con­ tent, and numbers that are withdrawn are not reused. Hence, the low number 194 reflects the fact that this standard is one of the very first ISO recommendations on terminology. One way to gauge how industry and commerce judge the utility of such a list of technical terms is to see how rapidly a series of ISO member states adopted R 194 as a national stan­ dard. The first country to do so was Switzerland, whose Stan­ dard VSM 77500 in German, French, Italian and English quick­ ly followed in the fall of 1964. The Working Group had no sooner turned the first edition over to the ISO Central Secretariat for publication when it be­ gan work with the same degree of intensity on supplements, which appeared every two years as Addendum 1, 2, etc., to ISO R 194. In 1969, the ISO Central Secretariat issued a new edition of ISO R 194 containing the integrated addenda. After ISO changed the designation for its documents from ISO Recommendation to ISO Standard, the first edition of ISO International Standard 194 appeared in 1981. This standard lists 1600 equivalent terms with the same meanings in the three ISO languages, which testifies to the fact that much had transpired since the 1964 edition. It is not really possible, however, to compare the two editions, because some terms had been re­ moved (e.g., terms pertaining to paints and varnishes were to be reworked by ISO/TC 35) and other terms were listed twice (e.g., all the resins appear under their own names, such as phenolic as well as under the superordinate term resin).

ISO Recommendation 194

adoption as a national standard


International Standard

212 3



Although this kind of multilingual term list is very useful, it has the disadvantage that it does not explain what a particular term means, which can cause a user to doubt the equivalents pro­ vided or to misunderstand how to use them. Every translator knows that the translation of words from one language to an­ other is fraught with uncertainties unless one knows the mean­ ing the author has assigned to the words. In the case of ISO standards, one must also ensure that the original ISO document can be translated by each member country into its national language, so it is essential to know the authors' precise inten­ sion for the various terms. For instance, homonyms can lead to misunderstandings when they are translated into another language if multilingual homophones are involved. These words sound alike in different languages and have very similar spellings, but they change their meanings from one language to the other. A typical example of this kind of homophonic false friend from the first edition of ISO 194 is: English granule = French granulé. The correct equivalents are: English granule = French grain or mouture. On the other hand, French granulé = English pellet (see ISO 472). The kind of glossary-type representation without definitions that is used in ISO 194 can also cause other kinds of uncer­ tainty. A term in one language can encompass a broader con­ cept than in another. One example from ISO 194 is the English word coating, which is listed as equivalent to French enduction. For the purpose of this standard, the term coating is expressly limited to the application of a liquid or semi-liquid that dries to form a protective finish, whereas it can also imply the applica­ tion of such materials as grease on a machine tool, for which English has the option to use the synonym smear in order to avoid potential ambiguity. The lack of definitions in the glos­ sary-type presentation of equivalents makes it impossible to provide users with information related to concept harmonization between the language equivalents.

concepts behind words

multilingual homophones

concept harmonization




When ISO R 194 was introduced, it became apparent that un­ certainties existed with respect to a few terms because of the problems outlined above. When confronted with these concerns, the working group that prepared ISO 194 quickly came to the conclusion that it was absolutely necessary to add short defini­ tions if the list of technical terms was to be used correctly. In the process of writing definitions, accompanied as it is by the examination of terms and concepts within concept systems, the kinds of incongruities described in the previous paragraph can be addressed and resolved. These procedures are necessary not just because of the fact that the standard appeared in three languages, but also because it had to be translated into the lan­ guages of the other ISO member states. As a consequence, work was begun on a second list in which a short definition was included for each of the terms. This was the beginning of ISO 472. (In contrast to the technical standards cited above, ISO 472 became a terminology standard, a vocabulary according to ISO usage.) The purpose of the ISO 472 Standard was to provide a list containing the equivalent terms for all the terms that are used in the technical standards administered by TC 61, together with their definitions. This list has in the meantime been translated by a large number of countries (German, Japanese, Spanish, among others), which means that the equivalent terms are now available in all these languages. If a technical standard uses terms for materials, properties, or procedures that differ from those listed in ISO 472, this doesn't directly influence the standard per se, but the standard­ izers run the risk that they will be poorly understood or even misunderstood. Before the appearance of ISO 472, very many terms that are listed in the standard had never appeared in dic­ tionaries, even technical ones, although they were contained in various publications, but these publications were widely scat­ tered and difficult to find. Experts who collaborated on the cre­ ation of ISO technical vocabularies enjoy the satisfaction that more and more of their terms are finding the way into other technical dictionaries. Consequently ISO 472 is more of an aide mémoire than a prescriptive specification, although ISO does specify that the terms included in ISO 472 be used for ISO

SEE Terminological Definitions 1.3.1:63

terminology standards

equivalent terms

prescriptive limitations



publications. As a list of technical vocabulary, ISO 472, like virtually all vocabularies of this type, represents a special bor­ derline function of standardization. Once work began on ISO 472, the work of the terminology working group had to be divided up because the demand for equivalent terms in English and French for the other sub-com­ mittees and working groups in ISO/TC 61 did not let up—as they continued to work on new standards, new terms kept cropping up. One working group was responsible for adding new terms to ISO 194, and another had the job of providing the appropriate definitions for a new list, which became ISO 472. When the first edition of International Standard 194 ap­ peared in 1981, 500 terms with definitions had already been published as ISO 472 in 1978. The original Working Group 1 was enlarged to become ISO/TC 61/SC 1: Sub-Committee One for Terminology. This expert committee was now responsible primarily for expanding ISO 472. ISO 472 was issued in 1988 with about 1000 defined terms, at which point the decision was made to withdraw ISO 194. No subsequent edition has been published, although work continues toward the creation of a new edition.

division of labor

2.2.4 Do's and Don'ts of Terminology Management CATHERINE BOWMAN, DIANE MICHAUD, AND HEIDI SUONUUTI 1


The following list of terminological admonitions is taken from a guide for terminology management that is being developed at the time this volume goes to print. It is designed particularly for subject experts doing systematic terminology work within the standards arena, but offers many useful tips for ad hoc terminologists as well, bearing in mind that concept-system related terminology management is difficult, if not sometimes impossible, in their daily activities.

Guide to Terminology Management

DO: 1. Structure your term list into concept systems. A diagram concept showing the relations between the various concepts in the systems same system can be used to organize the concept systems. 2. Collect definitions from reliable sources including available definitions subject field specialists. Quote definitions from other stan­ dards or other reliable sources, whenever possible. Note the source at the end of the definition in square brackets, i.e., [ISO 2382-1:1993]. If a definition has to be redrafted, be careful not to change the concept's intension or extension. 3. Base your definition on the superordinate concept for gen­ superordinate eric and partitive relations. When necessary use a general concepts term. Examples of useful words are property, action, science, device, process. These terms denote a superordinate generic concept which situates the concept within a concept system. The rest of the definition describes how the concept being defined differs from related concepts in the same sys­ tem. 4. Use the preferred term to refer to concepts already defined. preferred term



5. Be brief. Write concise definitions in one sentence that in­ clude all the essential characteristics of a concept. Any addi­ tional information may be included as a note or an example. 6. Write definitions that may replace the term in running text. Known in terminology work as the "principle of substitu­ tion", this practice promotes adequacy and brevity. 7. Write definitions that will be clear, intelligible, and useful for the intended reader. Highly technical expressions, such as mathematical formulas, do not meet the needs of lay per­ sons. On the other hand, the requirements of a specialist would not be met by a definition that did not provide techni­ cal specifications. The level of language used (e.g., infor­ mal or formal, common or technical) and the quantity and nature of the information required are determined by the tar­ get group. 8. Describe one concept, and only one, per definition. A term that refers to more than one concept ("has more than one meaning") shall have more than one entry, as long as the other concepts are relevant to the subject field in question. 9. Indicate the subject field of a definition when necessary to avoid confusion. This is particularly relevant when a term refers to more than one concept. For example, , < public transit > . lO.Use the same part of speech in the definition as in the term. Use a verb or verbal phrase when defining a verb, a noun when defining a noun, etc. 11.Have your definitions read by a native-language subject-field specialist to ensure that they are adequate and clear.


INFO Standard Definitions 1NFB 12:340

one concept

subject field

part of speech

DON'T: 1. Don't write or quote definitions that do not place the con­ cept adequately in your concept system. 2. Don't use the term referring to the concept being defined or any grammatical variation thereof in the definition. 3. Don t write definitions where one concept is denned by another which in turn is defined by the first. 4. Don't write definitions which are too broad or too narrow. Include only the information necessary to identify the concept according to its function or position within a

concept system tautology circularity broadness narrowness





8. 9.

particular concept system, but do not draft a definition that is so narrow that it applies only to very specific circum­ stances. Don't write negative definitions. Describe what the concept is, not what it is not. Some concepts, however, require negative definitions, i.e., bald: not having hair on one's head. Don't explain other terms within a definition. Refer only to concepts which are defined elsewhere or are well-known. Any concepts that require explanations shall be defined separately. Don't rely on an illustration to explain a concept which should be defined. Relevant illustrations shall complement definitions, not replace them. Don't begin a definition with any of the following: means, is, the term used for, the concept denoting. Don't use jargon or slang in definitions, nor words that are more difficult to understand than the term itself.



multiple definitions illustrations


2.2.5 Basic Resources for Assigning Chemical Names within the Field of Chemical Nomenclature JOY E. MERRITT AND BYRON J. BOSSENBROEK 1


The intended use of a name for a chemical substance is of primary consideration in choosing among several possible types of names. Thus, terminology practitioners are guided in select­ ing among class names, trivial names, trade names, non­ proprietary names, natural product names, and systematic names according to their intended use in textual writing, pat­ ents, literature searching, or in database management for regu­ latory inventories. Sources to consult to verify these names or for guidance in the procedures for generating systematic chemi­ cal and index names will be identified. The reverse process of starting with a systematic name and deriving a graphic formula will also be briefly reviewed. A selected bibliography of Inter­ national Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry ( IUPAC), Inter­ national Union of Biochemistry and nomenclature recommenda­ tions, practices, definitions, and translations will be included. 2

types of names


A chemical substance may be known by several names. For example, "salt" at the dinner table is usually understood to mean "sodium chloride". Among its other synonyms are "com­ mon salt", "iodized salt", "sea salt", and "sodium monochloride". In a chemical laboratory, "salt" is understood as a class term to denote a chemical compound derived from an acid by replacing hydrogen with a metal or an electropositive element (Webster's 1976). By this definition, "salt" denotes a class with many members including, for example, specific salts such as potassium chloride and sodium acetate. Thus, a chemist would need to specify "sodium chloride" to unambiguously refer to "common salt".


2.2.5 CHEMICAL NOMENCLATURE Similarly, in the field of medicine a drug may be identified by its non-proprietary name (generic name), brand name, code designation, or chemical systematic name. The selection of an appropriate name for a particular drug depends on the intended use of the name. For advertising and sales, a chemical manu­ facturer favors the brand name to promote its proprietary in­ terests in a drug. A prescription for the same drug may be dis­ pensed to a patient under its generic name. During clinical trials, a manufacturer may refer to a drug only by its code de­ signation. During its research and development phase, a drug will probably be identified in the chemical literature by an un­ ambiguous systematic chemical name. When its literature is ab­ stracted and indexed by CAS, the chemical substance will be assigned a unique and unambiguous index name, and assigned a Registry Number. In the online Registry File of Chemical Ab­ stracts Service (CAS REGISTRY File) on STNSM, all the names for a single substance are brought together and may be dis­ played under its unique CAS Registry Number and Chemical Abstracts (CA) index name along with an indication of the bib­ liographic references to the chemical literature. This is illus­ trated in Figure 1 for the popular AIDS drug, Zidovudine, appearing in news headlines as AZT. 2.1

219 drug names

Importance of Unambiguous Names

In most situations, it is important to use an unambiguous name to avoid confusion. Tragic events have resulted from the use of ambiguous names. Terms in common usage in one field of chemistry may have a different common usage in another. "Glycol" is such an example. In Webster's (1976), the first de­ finition is same as ETHYLENE GLYCOL; but its second def­ inition is, any of a group of alcohols of which ethylene glycol is the type. The World Health Organization (WHO) has publi­ cized three dissociated events in which many children are re­ ported to have died after having taken locally formulated medicinal syrups. A common factor in these events was evi­ dence that diethylene glycol rather than propylene glycol had been used as a solvent during the manufacture of these prod­ ucts. Diethylene glycol, used widely in industry as a solvent and an antifreeze, is acutely toxic to the kidneys and liver (WHO 1992: 6(4), 169; 1995: 9(3), 127).





CAS Registry File Record from STN International. (STN InternationalSM is the on-line Scientific & Technical Information Network operated in North America by Chemical Abstracts Service, a Division of the American Chemical Society.)




Thymidine, 3'-azido-3'-deoxy-

CAS Registry Number CA index name



3'-Azido-3'-deoxythymidine Uninverted chemical name 3' -Azidothymidine 3'-Deoxy-3'-azidothymidine Azidothymidine AZT BW-A 509U Code designation NSC 602670 Retrovir Trade name Zidovudine United States Adopted Name (USAN) CIO H13 N5 0 4 Molecular formula REFERENCES IN FILE CA (1967 TO DATE)

Figure 1: Zidovudine





Ethylene glycol[a]


1,2-Ethanediol[b] OH |


Propylene glycol[a] 1,2-Propanediol[b]


Diethylene glycol[c] 2,2'-Oxybis[ethanol][d]

[a] [b] [c] [d]

IUPAC name (Rule C-201.4). Current CA index name Not recommended by IUPAC Current CA index name, uninverted

Figure 2. Structures of Ethylene glycol, Propylene glycol and Diethylene glycol The possibility of a similar mix-up in a formulation involv­ ing "glycol" for treating pregnancy toxemia in ewes has also been reported (Chem. Eng. News 1993). In this case, it was feared that ethylene glycol would be used in place of propylene glycol. "Glycol" is thus an ambiguous term. The terms "ethyl­ ene glycol", and "propylene glycol" are defined explicitly in recommendations of the International Union of Pure and Ap­ plied Chemistry (IUPAC) (IUPAC 1979, Rule C-201.4.) with the admonition, "The glycol nomenclature should not be applied to other dihydric alcohols. " The structures of these glycols are shown in Figure 2. Their corresponding CA index names are included for comparison. 2.2


Unique and Unambiguous Names

Names for chemical substances are used in two primary con­ texts: (1) database management and (2) general communication.

naming requirements



In a database, chemical names support search, indexing, and registration functions, as well as governmental regulation. For these purposes, a name that is both unique and unambiguous and that reveals the chemical composition of the substance may be required. These names, however, may not meet objectives in textual and oral presentation of brevity, pronounceability, creativity (coinal names), proprietary availability (trade or generic names), or even of obscurity (code designations, al­ chemical names, trade secrets). For general communication, a name that is either unique or unambiguous may be sufficient. 3 IUPAC SYSTEMATIC CHEMICAL NOMENCLATURE A nomenclature is an authoritative system of terms that are established and developed according to naming rules and prac­ tices in a specified field (proposed definition of ASTM, Com­ mittee on Terminology). In chemistry, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) issues nomenclature recommendations for naming organic, inorganic, and macromolecular compounds; and in the field of biochemistry, it issues nomenclature recommendations jointly with the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB—called the International Union of Biochemistry (IUB) prior to 1992). Announcements and synopses of provisional recommen­ dations are made in the IUPAC news magazine, Chemistry International (1979 - ff.). Provisional recommendations may be obtained for comment from national and regional centers (Chem. Int. 1989, 1992). Approved nomenclature recommen­ dations are published in the IUPAC journal, Pure and Applied Chemistry, (1960 - ff.) and later are compiled into books according to subject disciplines. In addition, the IUPAC Interdivisional Committee on No­ menclature and Symbols (IDCNS) has published a Compendium of Chemical Terminology (IUPAC 1987), which compiles, in alphabetical order, terms used in chemistry with the definitions recommended by the various IUPAC commissions dealing with nomenclature and terminology. A comprehensive bibliography of the current IUPAC no­ menclature recommendations is given in the Bibliography that follows this article. A more extensive bibliography to current

Terminology Collections INFB 1:325

chemical publications

IUPAC bibliography

2.2. J CHEMICAL NOMENCLATURE and superseded recommendations is published as Section J. of Appendix IV to the CA Index Guide (CAS 1994). It also in­ cludes references to reports of the Committee on Nomenclature of the American Chemical Society (ACS), and to books and articles of individuals that have contributed to the history and development of chemical nomenclature. The recommendations are written in English and there are no official IUPAC translations. It is left to individuals and na­ tional nomenclature committees to translate the recommenda­ tions into other languages. However, there is no current com­ prehensive bibliography of these translations. IUPAC published a bibliography of these translations in 1967 (IUPAC 1967, 1966, 1964), and a bibliography of translations of IUPAC re­ commendations for inorganic chemistry, Part I, was published in 1970 (Trimble 1970). To my knowledge, Part II has never appeared. More recent translations may be identified by a search of the CAS online bibliographic files (File CA) combin­ ing terms such as "nomenclature", "IUPAC", "recommenda­ tions" with the name of specific languages in the appropriate language field. A comprehensive bibliography of current IUPAC publi­ cations on nomenclature and symbolism is maintained by the Royal Society of Chemistry (London) and is available on the World Wide Web (WWW) at: http: //chemistry.rsc.org/rsc/jappdx.htm A bibliography of IUPAC/IUBMB nomenclature recommen­ dations and a complete hypertext version of some of the docu­ ments has been prepared by G. P. Moss of the Department of Chemistry, Queen Mary and Westfield College (London) and is also available on the WWW at: http://www.qmw.ac.uk/ ~ ugcaOOO/iupac.html 3.1



World Wide Web Sites

Organic Nomenclature

In the field of organic chemistry, the IUPAC Commission on Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry has published a "blue book", Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry, Sections A, B, C, D, E, F, and H (IUPAC 1979). Names derived according to these rules are intended to be suitable for textbooks, journals and patents, and for compilations and indexes. In developing these rules the Commission sought to codify sound practices

naming rules



that already existed, rather than to originate novel systems. Thus, the recommendations encompass several systems of nomenclature, and for some classes of substances, it is up to the user to select among them. Also, they are not exhaustive where there was no system to codify. The conventions of Chemical Abstracts for spelling, position of numerals, punctu­ ation, italicizing, abbreviations, elision of vowels, and certain terminations are used for uniformity in the text and examples of the recommendations, but are not to be considered recom­ mendations by the Commission. Recommendations for naming acyclic and cyclic hydrocar­ bon or heterogenous substances are included in Sections A and B. Section C includes rules for naming characteristic groups (functional groups) such as alcohols, phenols, aldehydes, ke­ tones, carboxylic acids, amides, amines and organic sulfur com­ pounds. Section D so far has only received tentative approval and includes recommendations for naming organosilicon, organ­ oboron, organophosphorus, organometallic and coordination compounds. Sections E, F and H cover stereochemistry, natural products, and isotopically labeled compounds, respectively. Section G is considered developmental and has never been pub­ lished. The major systems for naming organic compounds are substitutive, skeletal replacement, and radicofunctional nomen­ clature. In substitutive nomenclature, the prefixes (radicals) denote the substitution of a hydrogen atom of the parent by the named group. In skeletal replacement nomenclature, the pre­ fixes ending in the letter "a" (e.g., oxa-, thia-, aza-) denote the replacement of an atom in the backbone of the parent by the named atom. Radicofunctional names are a type of additive name in which groups are named as prefixes (radicals) sepa­ rated by spaces and followed by the name of the function in­ volved. A simple example of each of these types of names is given in Figure 3. Additional methods for naming organic com­ pounds, including additive, subtractive, multiplicative, conjunc­ tive and functional replacement techniques, are given in the IUPAC recommendations.


organic naming systems




Substitutive name:


Radicofunctional name:

Ethyl methyl ether

Skeletal replacement:



Figure 3: Examples of Substitutive, Radicofunctional, and Skeletal Replacement Names Each system has its practical limitations and none of them can ever be applied comprehensively to name all organic com­ pounds. Some compounds can be named by more than one system; others are named by a combination of two of the sys­ tems. To provide practical guidance in applying the various sys­ tems of nomenclature to the naming of individual organic com­ pounds, several guidebooks and instructional manuals have been written. The American Chemical Society (ACS) has published Nomenclature of Organic Compounds, Principles and Practices (ACS 1974). Each section covering a specific functional group contains a discussion dealing with special problems, proscribing poor practices and giving examples of acceptable usage. An in­ struction manual has been written based on the experience of the Laboratory of the Government Chemist, U.K. in producing a Eurolist of trade chemicals classified under the headings of the European Common Customs Tariff (Godly 1989). It in­ cludes a flow-diagram that guides the user to the applicable name selection principles and corresponding chapter in the book. Another basic introduction, originally written in German and subsequently translated into English, Organic Chemical Nomenclature; Introduction to the Basic Principles (Fresenius 1989), includes the naming of natural products in its scope.

organic guidebooks



Additional guidebooks, including those that are written in other languages, are cited in Section J. of Appendix IV to the CA Index Guide. Not to be overlooked is the dynamic nature of chemical nomenclature. As new classes of substances are discovered, newly coined terms enter the vocabulary. Some eventually pro­ vide morphemes in the development of semi-systematic and sys­ tematic nomenclature. Organic Chemistry: The Name Game; Modern Coined Terms and Their Origins (Nickon and Silver­ smith 1987) documents the introduction of many trivial names with the accounts and anecdotes of their originators. Categories such as geometric shapes, animals, head coverings, mechanical devices, musical instruments, dances, and persons have inspired many of the coinal names. 3.2

coinal names

Inorganic Nomenclature

In the field of inorganic chemistry, the IUPAC Commission on Nomenclature of Inorganic Chemistry (CNIC) has published a "red book", Nomenclature of Inorganic Chemistry (IUPAC 1990). The aim of the Commission is to bring together esta­ blished and traditional practices and systems of nomenclature. The existence of several distinct nomenclature systems has led to logically consistent alternative names for a given substance. Each system has its defined units of element name roots, nume­ rical prefixes, locants, word prefixes, suffixes and punctuation that are combined according to approved rules of syntax. Re­ commendations for the formation of binary names, coordination names, additive, substitutive and functional replacement type names are included. The scope of the current recommendations includes the formation of names for elements, atoms, isotopes, binary compounds, ions, salts, neutral molecular compounds, coordination compounds, oxo acids and boron hydrides. In ad­ dition, guidance in writing molecular and structural formulas is given. The CNIC has also published a short guide to the use of their nomenclature recommendations (IUPAC 1977). A more extensive guidebook has been published by the American Chemical Society (ACS) (Block, Powell & Fernelius 1990). It explains both current and historical methods of naming inor­ ganic compounds.

IUPAC red book

inorganic guidebooks



Macromolecular Nomenclature

In the field of polymer chemistry, the IUPAC Commission on Macromolecular Nomenclature has published a "purple book", Compendium of Macromolecular Nomenclature (IUPAC 1991). Besides basic definitions of terms and a simple classification system, it contains recommendations for both source-based and structure-based naming of polymers. Source-based names for copolymers are based on the names of the constituent mono­ mers involved in the starting materials. A notation system al­ lows for the distinction, in both names and graphic formulas, of different types of sequence arrangement including unspeci­ fied, statistical, random, alternating, periodic, block and graft copolymers. Structure-based names are based on the identification of a constitutional repeating unit (CRU, which corresponds to CA's "structural repeating unit", SRU) and usually require the as­ sumption of an idealized structure. Currently, the application of structure-based nomenclature is limited to regular single-strand organic, inorganic and coordination polymers; names for ladder polymers have not yet been included. Figure 4 shows a com­ parison of a source-based name and a structure based name. Stereochemical definitions and. notations for stereoregular poly­ mers distinguish between a constitutional repeating unit and a configurational repeating unit, and recommendations for draw­ ing stereochemical formulas for polymer chains are illustrated in the "purple book". The International Organization for Standardization (ISO), primarily through its Technical Committee TC/61 on Plastics, and the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) have also issued terminology standards in the fields of plastics and rubber (ISO 472:1988 and ASTM D4805:1988). 3.4

IUPAC purple book

structurebased names

SEE ISO 472 2.2.3:209

Biochemical Nomenclature

In the field of biochemistry, IUPAC has formed a Joint Com­ mission on Biochemical Nomenclature (JCBN) with the Interna­ tional Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB) to consider the nomenclature and symbolic representation of natural products and related compounds, including synthetic

natural products




(-CH-CH2-) I C1

Source-based name:

Poly(vinyl chloride)

Structure-based name:


Figure 4: Example of a Source-Based Name and a Structure-Based Name of a Polymer. analogues. IUBMB has an established Nomenclature Committee (NC) with responsibility for enzyme nomenclature. Its classi­ fication of enzymes into 1. oxidoreductases, 2. transferases, 3. hydrolases, 4. lyases, 5. isomerases and 6. ligases with res­ pective subclassifications is reflected in its Enzyme Commission numbers. A typical number is E.C. for L-lactate dehydrogenase in which the first number " 1 . " identifies it as an enzyme that catalyses an oxidoreduction reaction. The classi­ fication scheme, systematic names and E.C. numbers for 3196 enzymes are published in Enzyme Nomenclature (IUBMB En­ zyme Nomenclature 1992). Since they are reaction based in contrast to being structure based, an enzyme cannot be given a systematic name until it is known what chemical reaction it catalyses. Authors may name new enzymes, but a new number should be assigned only by NC-IUBMB. IUBMB also publishes a very useful compendium covering areas such as natural products, stereochemistry, isotopically labeled compounds, amino acids, peptides, nucleotides, carbo­ hydrates, lipids, vitamins and tetrapyrroles (IUBMB 1992a). All of these recommendations were published in biochemical journals prior to their compilation in the compendium. Their references are cited in Section J. of Appendix IV to the CA Index Guide.

natural products

IUBMB compendium



Chemical Abstracts Index Names

The chemical nomenclature used by Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) has developed in parallel and generally in accordance with the IUPAC recommendations. Some adaptation of current IUPAC recommendations has been necessary to generate unique and unambiguous chemical names for over 14 million registered substances in the CAS database. In the development of CAS policies for index names of chemical substances, no new no­ menclature systems have been devised. Adaptation of current IUPAC rules to the specific needs of a very highly ordered alphabetical index, not arbitrary coinage of new terms, has been the approach taken. It continues to be recognized by CAS that, while a unique name is needed for an index, and that this name, and the Registry Number, are invaluable aids for substance identification, the use of this invariant index name for citation throughout every context in the scientific community is neither practicable nor desirable. However, international agreement in chemical nomenclature, as embodied in the rules of IUPAC, IUBMB, and other organizations, continues to be of the greatest importance in restricting the arbitrary proliferation of substance names.

index names

The CAS policies for naming and indexing chemical sub­ stances are comprehensively summarized in Appendix IV to the CA Index Guide (CAS 1994). These policies are more exten­ sively documented in the three-volume CAS Chemical Name Selection Manual (CAS 1982).

CAS naming policies


registry numbers

CAS Inverted Index Names

There are four major components of a CA preferred index name, PARent, SUBstituent, MODification and STEreochemical descriptor. The first of these must be present; the other three may be absent or present in any combination. In an in­ verted name, used for indexes and displayed online in the CAS Registry File, they are cited in the order indicated here. a. The PARent describes the cornerstone upon which the rest of the name (if present) is built. The PAR includes one or more identical functional groups when such are present. b. The SUBstituent describes the groups of atoms attached to the parent in a way that does not involve the principal func­ tional group(s).

name components



c. The MODification shows (in most cases) how the principal functional group has been altered by anhydride, ester, hydrazone, or oxime formation. However, the MOD does not have to alter, or even be associated with, the principal functional groups(s). It may indicate salt or ion formation, possibly involving other nonfunctional parts of the molecule, or it may indicate a molecular association (or a mixture or a polymer) of one molecule with others. d. The STEreochemical descriptor indicates in a systematic way the three-dimensional interrelationships of the atoms in the whole molecule. Its presence or absence in a chemical name depends upon the amount of information in the origi­ nal document. There are eight possible combinations of the four components of a systematic name. PAR PAR,SUB PAR,SUB,MOD PAR,SUB,MOD,STE PAR,SUB,STE PAR,MOD PAR,MOD,STE PAR,STE


3-Piperidinol 3-Piperidinol, 3-Piperidinol, 3-Piperidinol, (3R-cis)3-Piperidinol, 3-Piperidinol, 3-Piperidinol, 3-Piperidinol,

4-bromo4-bromo-, acetate (ester) 4-bromo-, acetate (ester), 4-bromo-, (3R-çis)hydrochloride monosodium salt, (R)(R)-

Uninverted Names

The conventional method of writing a chemical name is to cite the substituents in front of the parent name, to which suffixes may be attached, followed by modifying information, if neces­ sary, such as ester, oxime, compd. with, etc. Stereochemical descriptors are usually prefixed to the resulting name. This is the uninverted chemical name. For example, the uninverted name of the PAR,SUB,MOD,STE example above is in the order: STE,SUB,PAR,MOD (3R-cis)-4-Bromo-3-piperidinol acetate (ester). or (3R-cis)-4-Bromo-3-piperidiml acetate. Figure 5 illustrates additional uninverted names and their cor­ responding inverted names.

conventional names

Figure 5: Illustrative Key for the SAS Ring Systems Handbook (RSH)




Uninverted Names

Inverted Names

2-Amino-1-butanesulfonic acid Phenylphosphonic acid Dichlorodimethylsilane Diethyl hydrogen phosphate

1-Butanesulfonic, 2-aminoPhosphonic acid, phenylSilane, dichlorodimethylPhosphoric acid, diethyl ester

Figure 6: Examples of Uninverted Names and Inverted CAS Index Names 3.8

Ring Names and Stereoparents

Most organic compounds have names based on molecular skel­ etons. Many of these are ring systems. Ring systems are named as monocycles, polycycles (Von Baeyer names), fused rings, bridged fused rings, spiro rings, or ring assemblies. Procedures for naming, orienting and numbering new rings and ring sys­ tems are documented in the CAS Chemical Substance Name Selection Manual (CAS 1982), and are summarized in Appendix IV to the CA Index Guide (CAS 1994). For known ring systems, the 1993 CAS Ring Systems Handbook (RSH) (CAS 1995) catalogues 91,528 ring systems, and 207 cage systems (boron cages and fullerenes). Information for each ring system includes the CAS Registry Number, a struc­ tural diagram illustrating the numbering system, the current CA index name and the molecular formula. An illustrative key is given in Figure 6. The entries in the RSH are arranged primar­ ily by ring analysis (i.e., by the number, size, and atomic con­ tent of the component rings), and secondarily by ring name. Cumulative supplements are issued semiannually. Not to be overlooked is the index of cross references which forms the main body of the CA Index Guide. It also contains a complete set of structural diagrams of both cyclic (e.g., Morphinan, Prignane) and acyclic (e.g., D-Glucose, L-Glutamine) stereoparents. Stereoparents are given natural product type names since stereochemistry is implied in the name. Little or no indication of the complete molecular structure is therefore avail­ able without the diagram.

molecular skeletons

structural diagrams



Most of the IUPAC recommendations and the nomenclature policies documented by CAS are aimed at deriving a systematic chemical name from a given chemical structure. It is frequently also necessary to draw a chemical structure diagram (graphic formula) given only a systematic chemical name. Deriving a chemical structural diagram from a systematic name proceeds by taking each name fragment component, converting it into a structural fragment, and then placing each structural fragment in its proper position in the diagram, using the appropriate positional information. A summary of basic procedures in drawing a chemical structure from a chemical name is given in Paragraph 312 of Appendix IV to the CA Index Guide (CAS 1994). To help in the process several "look up" tables may be helpful. A list of substituent prefixes and their corresponding structural fragments is given in Section H of the Index Guide. A list of multiplicative prefixes and their corresponding numeri­ cal equivalents is given in Paragraph 311 of the Index Guide. The structure and locants of ring parents can be found by using the name index of the RHS. Stereoparent structures can be found by name in the Index Guide. Stereochemical descriptors are defined in Section E of the Index Guide. Similar lists can also be found in the IUPAC recommendations. Suffixes for principle chemical groups (principal characteristic groups, principal functional groups) are discussed in Section C of the Guide. A short list of functional suffixes and their correspond­ ing structural formulas is presented in Figure 7 based on a similar list in the IUPAC recommendations. Finally, a graphic structural formula may be displayed online in the STNSM CAS Registry File for most chemical sub­ stances that are currently registered. For biosequences the residues may be displayed in either one-letter or three-letter notations. 5



Computer generation of systematic chemical names from connection tables is actively being pursued by both Chemical

systematic chemical names


formula display



Abstracts Service (Mockus, Isenberg, and Vander Stouw 1981) and the Beilstein Institute (Wiesniewski 1990; Goebels, Lawson, and Wiesniewski 1991). In 1991 the Beilstein Institute introduced the AUTONOM, which creates IUPAC-compatible names directly from input of a structural diagram of an organic compounds into a PC. The initial program is limited to naming single component, nonstereospecific, uncharged organic species of less than 100 non-hydrogen atoms. 6

computer generation


Systematic IUPAC chemical names and CA index names tend to be complex. Thus, although they may provide a complete, precise, unique and unambiguous description of a substance, they may fail to meet the needs of health-care practitioners and the patient for pharmaceutical designations that are unique, con­ cise and convenient. These needs are more appropriately served by nonproprietary names. Globally, the World Health Organization (WHO) recom­ mends International Nonproprietary Names (INN) for drugs. The WHO Expert Committee on Nonproprietary Names for Pharmaceutical Substances oversees the procedure for the selec­ tion of these names. The principles that WHO follows for guidance in devising INN for pharmaceutical substances rest on the primary objectives of assuring distinctiveness in sound and spelling, convenient length, absence of possible confusion with names in common use and, where appropriate, show a relation­ ship to pharmacologically related substances. Names that are likely to convey an anatomical, physiological, pathological or therapeutic suggestion are avoided. One word names are pre­ ferred and usually apply to the active base or active acid when a salt form is used. To facilitate translation and pronunciation, "f" is used instead of "ph", "t" instead of "th", "e" instead of "ae" or "oe", and "i" instead of "y"; the use of the letters "h" and "k" are avoided. Group relationship is shown by using a common stem. A selected list of these stems is shown in Figure 8. These stems should be avoided when coining trivial and trade names.

nonproprietary names

WHO INN names

2.2.5 CHEMICAL NOMENCLATURE Class Cations Carboxylic acid Sulfonic acid Salts




-onium -carboxylic acid -oic acid -sulfonic acid Metal ...carboxylate Metal ...oate



R ...carboxylate R ...oate

Acid halides

-CO-Halogen -(C)O-Halogen

-carbonyl halide -oyl halide


-CO-NH2 -(C)0-NH2

-carboxamide -amide


-C = N -(C)=N

-carbonitrile -nitrile


-CHO -(C) = 0

-carbaldehyde -carboxaldehyde[a] -al


>(C) = 0












= NH



[a] Carbon atoms enclosed in parentheses are included in the name of the parent compound and not in the suffix or prefix. [b] CA uses this suffix in preference to -carbaldehyde.

Figure 7: Functional Suffix Groups. (IUPAC Organic Nomenclature 1979)



The INN names are currently published first as proposed lists (pINN) and eventually as recommended INN for Pharma­ ceutical Substances in WHO Drug Information (WHO 1987) In these lists each INN is defined chemically by its corres­ ponding IUPAC chemical name, graphic and molecular for­ mulas. Cumulative lists are published at about five-year inter­ vals. Cumulative List Number 8 (WHO/INN 1992) incorpor­ ates 6,085 INN for individual pharmaceutical substances in Latin, English, French, Russian and Spanish. It also includes references to other generic names such as national nonproprie­ tary names and names used by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), pharmacopeial monographs, the List of Narcotic Drugs under International Control, and other sources. However, no systematic names or graphic formulas appear in the cumulative lists. The United States Adopted Names (USAN) Council selects names for drugs in the U.S.A. These names are published regularly in Pharmacopeial Forum. They are also published in a "New Names List" in Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics accompanied by both their corresponding IUPAC chemical and CA index names in uninverted format along with the graphic and molecular formulas. Uniquely, the USAN Council also provides a simple pronunciation guide for each adopted name based on English-language spelling. A cumulative list of the adopted names is compiled and published annually in the USP Dictionary of USAN and International Drug Names (USP 1995). In the 1995 edition more than 8,442 nonproprietary drug names are listed, including British Approved Names (BAN), Japanese Accepted Names (JAN), and International Proprietary Names (INN), in addi­ tion to 3,200 United States Adopted Names (USAN). Brand names, code designations, and more than 9,200 CAS Registry Numbers are also listed. About 6,700 graphic formulas are depicted. All INN from the 1953 through 1994 are included in this book. In the USP Dictionary the CAS index names are presented in the inverted CAS index format. An illustrative USAN entry is given in Figure 9. Guiding principles for coining USAN for drugs, including a list of stems used by the USAN Council, are listed in Appendix I of the Dictionary.

INN cumulative lists

USAN names

USAN/USP cumulative list

2.2.5 CHEMICAL NOMENCLATURE -ac -actide -adol -ast -astine -azepam -bactam bol -buzone -cain-caine cef-cillin -conazole cort -dipine -fibrate gest gliio-ium -metacin -mycin -nidazole -olol -oxacin

-pride -pril(at) -profen prost -relin -terol -tidine -trexate -verine vin- or -vin-


anti-inflammatory agents of the ibufenac group synthetic polypeptides with a corticotrophin-like action analgesics anti-asthmatic, anti-alleigic substances not acting primarily as antihistaminics antihistaminics substances of the diazepam group ß-lactamase inhibitors steroids, anabolic anti-inflammatory analgesics of the phenylbutazone group antifibrillant substances with local anaesthetic activity local anaesthetics antibiotics, derivatives of cefalosporanic acid antibiotics, derivatives of 6-aminopenicillanic acid systemic antifungal agents of the miconazole group corticosteroids, except those of the prednisolone group calcium-channel blockers of the nifedipine group substances of the clofibrate group steroids, progestogens sulfonamide hypoglycemics iodine-containing contrast media quaternary ammonium compounds anti-inflammatory substances of the indometacin group antibiotics, produced by 'Streptomyces' strains antiprotozoal substances of the metronidazole group ß-adrenoreceptor antagonists antibacterial agents of the nalidixic acid group sulpiride derivatives angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors anti-inflammatory substances of the ibuprofen group prostaglandins pituitary hormone release-stimulating peptides bronchodilators, phenethylamine derivatives H2-receptor antagonists folic acid antagonists spasmolytics with a papaverine-like action vinca-type alkaloids

Where a stem is shown without any hyphens, it may be used anywhere in the name. A more extensive listing of stems is contained in the working documents Pharm S/Nom 15 which can be requested from Pharmaceuticals, World Health Organization, 1211 Geneva 27, Switzer­ land.

Figure 8: Illustrative List of Stems Used for INN (WHO)


Figure 9: Illustrated Entry in the USAN Dictionary





Recommendations sponsored by major national and international organizations are listed by sponsoring institution, in alphabetical order by institutional name. When cited in the text of this article, these items can be found under the appropriate association name and item reference. All citations for which authors are cited follow in a standard references section. AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY

ACS: Nomenclature of Organic Compounds, Principles and Practice. J. H. Fletcher, O. C Dermer, and R.B. Fox, editors. American Chemical Society, Washington, D.C., 1974. (Advances in Chemistry Series 126.) CHEMICAL ABSTRACTS

CAS. 1994."Selected bibliography of nomenclature of chemical substances." In: 1994 CA Index Guide, Appendix IV. CAS. 1982. Chemical Substance Name Selection Manual, Volumes 1,2,3. Columbus, Ohio: Chemical Abstracts Service. CAS. 1992. Naming and Indexing of Chemical Substances for Chemical Abstracts. Columbus, Ohio: Chemical Abstracts Service, 148 pp. Separate reprint CAS. 1993. Ring Systems Handbook. Volumes I-III. Washington, D.C.: American Chemical Society, 1993; Cumulative Supplement 4 1995. IUPAC AND IUBMB Nomenclature Recommendations for Naming Inorganic, Organic, Macromolecular and Biochemical Compounds BOOKS

IUPAC. 1987. Compendium of Chemical Terminology; IUPAC Recommendations. Oxford, U.K.: Blackwell Scientific Publications. (The Gold Book). IUPAC. 1990. Nomenclature of Inorganic Chemistry. Recommendations 1990. Oxford, U.K.: Blackwell Scientific Publications. (The Red Book). IUPAC. 1977. How to Name an Inorganic Substance. Oxford, U.K.: Pergamon. IUPAC. 1991. Compendium of MacromolecularNomenclature. Oxford, U.K.: Blackwell Scientific Publications. (The Purple Book). IUPAC. 1979. Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry. Sections A, B, C, D, E, F and H. Oxford, U.K.: Pergamon. (The Blue Book). IUBMB. 1992a. Biochemical Nomenclature and Related Documents; A Compendium. 2nd ed. London: Portland Press. IUBMB. 1992. Enzyme Nomenclature 1992. San Diego: Academic Press; Supplements Eur. J. Biochem. 1994, 223(1), 1-5; 1995, 232(1), 1-6.






"Nomenclature of inorganic boron compounds." In: Pure Appl. Chem. 30 (1972), p. 681-710. "Nomenclature of inorganic chemistry: II.1 - Isotopically modified compounds. Recom­ mendations 1981." Pure Appl Chem. 53 (1981), p. 1887-900. "Nomenclature of inorganic chemistry: II.2 The nomenclature of hydrides of nitrogen and derived cations, anions, and ligands. Recommendations 1981." Pure Appl. Chem. 54(12) (1982), p. 2545-52. "New notations in the periodic table." Pure Appl. Chem. 60(3)(1988), p. 431-436. "Nomenclature of polyanions." Pure Appl. Chem. 59(11)(1987) p. 1529-1548. "Atomic weights of the elements 1991." Pure Appl. Chem. 64(10)(1992), p. 1519-1534. •



"List of valid recommendations on macromolecular nomenclature." Polym. Prepr.Am. Chem. Soc. Div. Polym. Chem. 31(2)(1990), p. 723. •



"Revision of the extended Hantzsch-Widman system of nomenclature for heteromonocycles." In: Pure Appl. Chem. 55(2) (1983), p. 409-416. "Nomenclature for organic chemical transformations. Recommendations 1988." Pure Appl. Chem. 61(4) (1989), p. 725-768. "System for symbolic representation of reaction mechanisms. Recommendations 1988." Pure Appl. Chem. 61(1) (1989), p. 23-56. "The detailed linear representation of reaction mechanisms. Recommendations 1988." Pure Appl. Chem. 61(1) (1989), p. 57-81. "Extension of rules A-l.l and A-2.5 concerning numerical terms used in organic chemical nomenclature. Recommendations 1986." Pure Appl. Chem. 58(12) (1986), p. 1693-6. "Treatment of variable valence in organic nomenclature (X convention). Recommen­ dations 1983." Pure Appl. Chem. 56(6) (1984), p. 769-778. "Nomenclature for cyclic organic compounds with contiguous formal double bonds (the delta.-convention). Recommendations 1988." Pure Appl. Chem. 60(9) (1988), p. 1395-1401. "Names for hydrogen atoms, ions, and groups, and for reactions involving them. Recommendations 1988." Pure Appl. Chem. 60(7) (1988), p. 1115-1116.




• IUPAC AND IUB BIOCHEMISTRY "Nomenclature of iron-sulfur proteins. Recommendations 1978. " Eur. J. Biochem. 93 (1979), p. 427-430; corrections, Eur. J. Biochem. 95 (1979), p. 369 and 102 (1979), p. 315. "Recommendations for measurement and presentation of biochemical equilibrium data." Eur. J. Biochem. 72(1) (1977), p. 1-7. "Nomenclature of electron-transfer proteins. Recommendations 1989." J. Biol. Chem. 267(1) (1992), p. 665-677. Ad Hoc Committee on Eicosanoid Nomenclature. "Eicosanoid nomenclature." Prostaglandins 38(1) (1989), p. 125-133. "Glossary for chemists of terms used in biotechnology. Recommendations 1992." Pure Appl. Chem. 64(1) (1992), p. 143-168. "Selection of terms, symbols and units related to microbial processes. Recommendations 1992. " Pure Appl. Chem. 64(7) (1992), p. 1047-1053. • OTHER IUPAC RECOMMENDATIONS "Use of abbreviations in the chemical literature. Recommendations 1979. " Pure Appl. Chem. 52 (1980), p. 2229-2232. "Guidelines for drafting IUPAC recommendations." Chem. Int. 12(4) (1990), p. 144-147. "Procedure for comment and approval of IUPAC recommendations on nomenclature and symbols." Chem. Int. 11(2) (1989), p. 65-68. • IUPAC GENERAL PUBLICATIONS IUPAC. Chemistry International. Oxford, U.K.: Blackwell Scientific, 1979-present. (Formerly IUPAC Information Bulletin.) IUPAC. Pure and Applied Chemistry. Oxford, U.K.: Blackwell Scientific, Oxford, 1960-present. •


"IUPAC rules for nomenclature, symbols, terminology, etc." IUPAC Information Bulletin No. 28 (February) (1967), pp. 28-32; No. 25 (February) (1966), pp. 69-71; No. 21 (July) (1964), pp. 34-36. "Addresses of national and regional centres." Chem. Int. 14(1) (1992), p. 25. WHO Publications WHO Drug Information. Geneva: World Health Organization, 1987 WHO INN: International Nonproprietary Names (INN) for Pharmaceutical Substances, Lists 1-65 of Proposed INN, and Lists 1-31 of Recommended INN. Cumulative List No. 8. Geneva: World Health Organization, 1992. Other Publications Reese, K.M. 1993. "Newscripts." Chem. Eng. News 71(7) 56 (February 15, 1993).





ASTM D4805:88. "Standard Terminology for Plastics Standards." Annual Book of ASTM Standards, Volume 08.03. Philadelphia: ASTM. Block, B. Peter, Warren H. Powell, and W. Conrad Fernelius. 1990. Inorganic Chemical Nomenclature, Principles and Practice. Washington, D.C.: American Chemical Society. Fletcher, John H., Otis C. Dermer, and Robert B. Fox, editors. 1974. "Nomenclature of Organic Compounds, Principles and Practice." American Chemical Society, Wash­ ington, D.C. (Advances in Chemistry Series 126). Fresenius, Philipp. 1989. Organic Chemical Nomenclature; Introduction to the Basic Principles. Chichester, U.K.: Ellis Horwood. (This English edition is translated from the original German edition, Organisch-chemische Nomenklatur: Einführung in die Grundlagen mit Regeln und Beispielen. 2nd edition. Wissenschaftliche Verlagsgesellschaft, 1983.) Godly, Edward W. 1989. Naming Organic Compounds; A systematic Instruction Man­ ual. Chichester, UK: Ellis Horwood. Goebels, L., A.J. Lawson, and J. L. Wisniewski. 1991. "System for computer transla­ tion of structural diagrams into IUPAC-compatible names. 2. Nomenclature of chains and rings." J. Chem. Inf. Comput. Sci. 31, p. 216-225. International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry. 1987. "Compendium of Chemical Terminology." Victor Gold, Kurt L. Loening, Alan D. McNaught and Pamil Sehmi, compilers. Blackwell Scientific, Oxford. ISO 472:1988. "Plastics Vocabulary (with Addenda)." ISO Standards Handbook 21. Loening, Kurt L. 1988. "Poster session: Conventions, practices, and pitfalls in drawing chemical structures." Chemical Structures: Proceedings: Chemical Structures: The International Language of Chemistry, Noordwijkerhout, The Netherlands, 31 May 1987. W. A. Warr, editor. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 413-423. Mockus, J., A. C. Isenberg, and C. G. Vander Stouw. 1981. "Algorithmic generation of Chemical Abstracts index names. 1. General design." J. Chem. Inf. Comput. Sci. 21, p. 183-195. Nickon, Alex, and Ernest F. Silversmith. 1987. Organic Chemistry: The Name Game; Modern Coined Terms and Their Origins. New York: Pergamon Press. Trimble, R. F. 1970. "Bibliography of rules of chemical nomenclature in various lan­ guages. I. Inorganic chemistry." J. Chem. Doc. 10(4), p. 227-230. USP Dictionary of Drug Names, Carolyn A. Fieeger, ed. Rockville, Maryland: United States Pharmacopeial Convention, Inc., 1995. (ÜSAN and International 1961-1995 Cumulative List.) Webster's New WorldDictionary of the American Language. 2nd College ed. World Pub­ lishing Co., 1976. Wisniewski, J.L. 1990. "System for computer translation of structural diagrams into IUPAC-compatible names. 1. General design." J. Chem. Inf. Comput. Sci. 30, p. 324-332.

3 Language Policy and Technology

Section 3.1 Multilingualism in Terminology Management GERHARD BUDIN AND SUE ELLEN WRIGHT 1


No handbook on terminology would be complete without a treatment of language policy, language planning, and the techni­ cal problems involved in representing languages in a multi­ lingual environment. Dealing with these issues within the framework of the handbook format is problematic, however. The generic pragmatic aspects of language policy and planning are treated effectively in articles on term selection and formation, definitions, and contexts, as well as descriptive and prescriptive terminology practice. The specific parameters of any given language environment vary too widely to be treated in a generally applicable article. Furthermore, they will in all likelihood be well-known to anyone working in a specific situa­ tion. Nevertheless, many people, even linguists and active terminologists, are unfamiliar with language policy issues or are only familiar with concerns that affect their own language or the languages in their immediate geographical area. A com­ prehensive worldwide survey of language policy issues is, of course, a topic worthy of separate treatment that goes beyond the scope of a single article. Consequently, rather than pro­ viding information on how to "do language planning", the arti­ cles included in this section represent a brief introduction to some of the aspects that affect language policy decisions in various parts of the world. Languages evolve and survive in a permanent state of tension among at least three conflicting forces: the urge for lin­ guistic improvisation, which constantly introduces change; in­ ternal and social pressures to safeguard ethnic identity by pre­ serving even very small separate languages embedded in larger language communities; and the necessity to standardize meaning in order to facilitate understanding. The desire to nurture multi­ lingualism must compete with counter-pressures to enforce

language policy

multilingualism vs. monolingualism



monolingualism. In the past the trend toward monolingualism has been driven by social, political, religious, and economic forces. Perhaps now as never before, in an era of burgeoning democracy and growing efforts to avoid losing human cultural heritage, resources are being allocated to support the retention of diversity. At the same time, however, new realities in the form of the worldwide shift to electronic communications and knowledge management are jeopardizing the general utilization of smaller languages, particularly those that may not be repre­ sented in the more widely used scripts. 2


The metaphor of the Tower of Babel is so pervasive that seri­ ous scholars invoke it almost as a historical event, regardless of their orientation to the quasi-mythological environment in which it evolved. Linguistic diversity reflects a natural human im­ pulse. When segments of societies become divided for whatever reason (geographical displacement, class distinctions, or poli­ tical isolation), they frequently undergo separate development to the extent that previously homogenous languages can quickly diverge into mutual unintelligibility. This is particularly true of languages that lack writing systems and where interactive contact is truly cut off for numerous generations. (The evo­ lution of mutually unintelligible languages among the Sami peoples stretched across the western chord of the Arctic circle represents a case in point.) Where there is a high level of edu­ cation, a fixed writing system, and modern communications, dialects and different accents evolve, but mutual intelligibility is generally retained. Left to their own devices, human children who are just learning language will create highly imaginative, often very rational and meaningful terms for new concepts as they encounter new objects in the real world. Some twins will create their own personal language that no one else, not even their other siblings, can understand. Argots and minority dialects, such as American Black English, revel in a state of perpetual self-re-invention, wearing neologisms and radical shifts in semantic content as a badge of in-your-face cultural and ethnic superiority. Even synthetic languages like Esperanto have generated regional dialects.

linguistic innovation

3.1 MULTILINGUALISM IN TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT The grizzled witticism that a language is a dialect with an army (and most probably a navy as well) has its roots in historical reality. Parallel to the Babel legend, we know that the first documentable translators (and translators are inevitably terminologists to some extent) were cuneiform scribes who recorded taxes owed by the subject peoples of the Babylonian empire. Imperialism has traditionally militated against linguistic variation, resulting in the ascendancy of so-called world languages such as Greek, Latin, Arabic, English, French, Spanish, and Russian. From their beginnings as languages of national unity, all of them were used at one time or another at least in areas of government and economics to impose varying degrees of monolingualism within their expanding spheres of influence. The vigorous imposition of imperialist monolingualism has resulted in the eradication of many languages (e.g., numerous American indigenous languages, or in a historical perspective, most vestiges of Celtic languages on the continent of Europe, cited here lest one be tempted to assume that linguistic imperi­ alism is a uniquely modern or perhaps just an Anglo-Saxon phenomenon). The disappearance of small language communi­ ties in the modern era is not necessarily, however, solely a function of cultural expansionism. It also manifests itself as a result of the motivation of indigenous peoples to integrate them­ selves into the mainstream, supported, of course, by pressures from the majority cultures in favor of such integration, but also motivated by the questionable lure of perhaps deceivingly at­ tractive lifestyles. Moreover, as can be seen in the Gaelic and Amerindian models for reintroducing ethnic languages, the rehabilitation of dying languages requires serious commitment and energy. The archetypical example of truly effective language renewal is the regeneration of modern Hebrew based on ancient roots. The success of the Hebrew experiment can be attributed to many factors, not the least of which include the real need for a com­ mon language among a nation of people with many mother tongues, the presence of a rich body of historical linguistic resources, and the concerted official and popular support for the program at all levels of society (see Cooper 1989).


linguistic imperialism

language eradication

language revival Gaelic Amerindian Hebrew

248 3




Creative Chaos

Within the bulwarks of monolingual language communities, different approaches have evolved with respect to the controls imposed on linguistic innovation. English exercises little if any control in the form of language planning, aside from absolutely essential standardization efforts in engineering, as well as legal regulations affecting matters of public health and safety. Any global efforts to enforce even a modicum of harmonization in scientific special languages are strictly the province of domainspecific learned societies. No national or international institu­ tion comparable to the Académie française or the Québecois Office de la langue française exists or would ever be tolerated. Like Latin before it, the far-flung distribution of English has resulted in the proliferation of countless filial tongues. Secondlanguage versions of the language (e.g., European and Indian English) thrive parallel to so-called native-speaker dialects such as British, Canadian, American, and Australian. The libertarian character of English is widely championed as analogous to the democratic spirit of the Anglo-Saxon world view, with the con­ sequence that efforts to harmonize or enforce general language usage are viewed with distrust or even as anathema. The egalitarian view toward borrowing and language devel­ opment in general is reflected in the Spanish-speaking world as well. Despite efforts of the Real Academia in Spain to maintain a certain degree of order in the development of the Spanish language, the geographic and political reality of Hispanic Latin America virtually ensures that many of the characteristics of multilingualism prevail within an ostensibly monolingual en­ vironment. Variation thrives, even with respect to technical ter­ minology. Iberian Spanish tends to model neologisms on French precedents, whereas Latin America either borrows from English (frequently with unfortunate results) or patterns coinages after North American usage. Despite efforts in some centers (Vene­ zuela, Colombia, and Argentina) to document and even har­ monize usage, the same forces that militate against the adoption of world languages (e.g., English, French, or perhaps Russian) in multilingual situations impede the evolution of a harmonized Spanish language.


antagonism to language planning




Language Purity

Efforts to retain the purity of languages do not, however, re­ flect a single monolithic set of social and ethnological prin­ ciples. French, for instance, enjoys a well-established tradition that the language represents a permanent cultural treasure that should not be adulterated by foreign or ill-advised accretions. Other peoples who strive to prevent the contamination of their languages are motivated by the fact that their languages truly do exemplify a near-pristine linguistic stock, for instance Icelandic, which, thanks to centuries of near isolation, con­ serves the essential elements of its Nordic origins. In a popu­ lation where the proverbial man on the street is as knowledgeable with respect to linguistic heritage as few learned scholars on the mainland, the Icelanders stand a better chance of achiev­ ing their mission than many others. If Icelandic exemplifies near virginal incorruption, other speech communities are striving to achieve something resem­ bling linguistic integrity after suffering decades—in some cases, centuries—of cultural and lexical violation. While ostensibly espousing a policy of multilingualism and multiculturalism with­ in a union of sovereign republics, the former Soviet Union in effect constrained its constituent ethnic groups, many of them now establishing themselves as independent states, to adopt the Russian language as the language of government, science, tech­ nology, and higher education. Soviet terminologists, for in­ stance, were able to make the startling claim that there were no conceptual interferences such as neutralization and diversifi­ cation among the various languages and dialects spoken in the former USSR. This seemingly implausible circumstance became credible, however, once one discovered that technical terms, insofar as they even existed in local languages, were all mapped to standardized, clearly defined Russian terms and concepts. In the early decades of Soviet rule, language planning stra­ tegies effectively took control of the development of hitherto non-technical regional languages and tied them to the evolution of scientific and technical vocabulary in Russian. Furthermore, in Western Republics where progress toward local language en­ richment had indeed been made during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries (e.g., in the Baltic States), the des­ truction or forced exile of the intelligentsia and the general

SEE Francophone Experience 3.2:261 Icelandic

languages of the former Soviet Union

second-class languages



practice of intellectual documents (such as scientific papers and doctoral theses) being written in Russian, coupled with the virtual requirement that serious scholars complete their studies in Moscow rather than in their home territories, effectively relegated these languages to the personal sphere and impov­ erished them with respect to technical terminology. In the wake of the breakup of the Soviet experiment, most of the newly liberated independent states have pursued language policies aimed at consciously developing coherent, well-moti­ vated terminological resources for all areas of science, techno­ logy, business, and law, with the avowed intention of avoiding and eliminating loan words and internationalisms that smack not only of Russian domination or intrusive English influence, but, especially in the Baltics, of earlier German cultural and feudal hegemony as well. Given the many centuries of forced lin­ guistic deprivation, language planners in these areas are turning back to ancient roots to gather the etymological raw material to reconstruct lexical and terminological tools to meet the needs of twenty-first century professional, intellectual, and economic development. Only time will tell how successful they will be in achieving their goals in an environment of economic and poli­ tical uncertainties. 3.3

independent states

Post-Colonial Environments

The pattern of multilingualism manifests itself on every conti­ nent, but no more poignantly than in Africa. In Nigeria, for instance, a country of nearly 90 million, over 400 languages are spoken. Language planning just for basic scientific and mathe­ matical terminology remains at a level where it is difficult to ensure that children studying basic subjects in school will be able to receive instruction in their mother tongues. Efforts to pursue terminology planning, such as they are, in regional languages such as Kiswahili may be useful in the long run, but Kiswahili is again a regional, non-mother-tongue language, albeit an African one. Furthermore, social and economic uncer­ tainties and political unrest in many areas have overshadowed issues such as language planning. Under apartheid, languages in South Africa functioned in the interest of state policy. Afrikaans embodied the central govern­ ment position, whereas English served somewhat as a medium


South Africa

3.I MULTILINGUALISM IN TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT for resistance. Today, both have taken their place as official languages on an officially equal footing with indigenous lan­ guages. The National Terminology Services and similar institu­ tions, with the support of the reform government, have em­ barked on an ambitious program to expand the existing Term Bank to include all languages and to assist in the development of terminological resources in those languages that have not traditionally maintained a stock of scientific and technical ter­ minology. Efforts to cope with multilingualism and with languagedevelopment concerns in Asia have taken widely varied forms. The Indian solution, for instance, is pragmatic and remarkable in that it runs against the trend to utterly reject imperialistically imposed languages. The founders of the independent Indian state were confronted with ethnic and cultural diversity so great and so fraught with potential for controversy and civil unrest that the selection of a single or even a manageable few official indigenous languages proved impossible. The situation was ex­ acerbated by the fact that even related languages are not repre­ sented by common scripts. As a result, the use of English has continued beyond the colonial period as a language of science, technology, education, and interethnic discourse. This simple expedient has to an extent allowed India to side-step some lan­ guage issues and has given the Indian intelligentsia ready entree to British, American, and Australian universities and guaranteed that Indian engineers and computer programmers, as well as computer services, are among the sub-continent's most valuable export commodities. Varying scenarios abound, both in post-colonial environ­ ments and elsewhere. In some cases, language groups were split by artificial colonial boundaries (Malaysia and Indonesia) and have given rise to efforts to rees tablish harmonized usage. Other attempts to harmonize closely related languages (Serbian and Croatian unfortunately come to mind) have failed tragically. Finland and Catalonia represent regions where the elimination of foreign dominance or of unenlightened central government policy has heralded an era of energetic language development. Efforts in Arabic and Chinese are particularly complex cases where both language planning and script issues play a role.



Malaysian Indonesian Serbian Croatian Finnish Catalan Arabic Chinese

252 3.4


With eleven separate official languages, the European Union has paid a high price to maintain translation and terminology documentation services for the member states and constituent language communities. The cause of "linguistic human rights", however, is not limited to any specific number of current "official" EU languages. The problem also plays a role at the sub-national level as well because any number of countries have significant minority language communities. France, Austria, and Germany, for instance, all have groups that do not speak French and German as their the native language (Breton, Basque, Slovenian, Croatian, Romany, Sorbian, etc.). The op­ portunities for these people to use their native languages in their daily lives (in their professions or in contact with public authorities) are limited, although the languages in question are officially recognized. Nor do these languages necessarily always correspond to ethnic groups or regional isolation. Modern mi­ grant languages and ancient imports such as Romany are widely scattered throughout Europe. At the EU level, e.g., with res­ pect to multilingualism in education or other subsidized pro­ grams, the will seems to be present to support language diversity, at least in terms of public policy and Commission funding. The private sector, and particularly the area of tech­ nological support, however, is another matter. 4



Consistent implementation of multilingual policy in any of the environments cited above is subject to contradictions regardless of the level of goodwill and the financial resources of govern­ ments. It may be easy to make decisions on political, strategic grounds designed to honor linguistic rights as human rights, but when it comes to putting such policies into practice one can no longer overlook or gloss over the technical impediments to these goals. The fact remains that by virtue of the dominant US role in the development of information technology, computer science has from the beginning been a monolingual undertaking. Nowhere is this more evident than in the case of the infa­ mous "lower" (7-bit) ASCII code (ISO 646), with its limitation to those letters of the Latin script that are used in the English

computer science

character-set technology



alphabet. Although many computer specialists all over the world have accepted English as a working language for infor­ mation technology, as more and more people become involved in computer applications, the willingness of other professional or social groups in non-English-speaking countries to use Eng­ lish instead of their "own" language has decreased drastically, as has their readiness to represent their own language in the 26 letters of the English alphabet. So-called "higher ASCII" ac­ commodates major European languages such as French, Span­ ish, German, and Italian, but leaves out characters needed for the Nordic languages or Portuguese, not to mention the diacri­ tics needed for Western Slavic languages or Turkish. It is pre­ cisely at this point that character set technology has begun to develop methods, standards, and technical solutions that will respond to the trend toward internationalization and linguistic emancipation based on the ever-growing number of scientific languages. The following discussion describes some of the areas of character set technology where the tension between egalitar­ ian language policy and language standardization is most evi­ dent. 4.1

Standardizing Character Set Technology

Character set technology is an astonishingly broad, multifaceted topic. It constitutes an interface between theory and practice in information technology, information science and computer ap­ plications, linguistics, and language policy. It embodies the di­ verse needs associated with language applications in a variety of contexts. In the framework of European standardization (the Comité Européen de Normalisation), a separate technical com­ mittee, CEN/TC 304, was established in 1992 with the title "Character Set Technology". This committee has compiled a "taxonomy" reflecting its scope, which is also being imple­ mented as a planning instrument for the Commission of the European Union (CEC). Figure 1 shows a graphic represen­ tation of user needs in the area of multi-cultural support for the application of information technology tools. User needs with respect to multilingualism and the process­ ing of different scripts involves the following aspects: • specification of the alphabet (character set) used in any given language

CEN TC 304

user needs



Figure 1: Graphic Representation of the Essential Aspects of User Needs with Respect to Character Set Technology (CEN/TC 304/PT 1 1995:32) • • • • • • •

the graphic representation of the character sets (glyphs) compilation of practical lists of language-related rules for alphabetical sorting (where applicable) specification of orthographic rules (spelling rules for names, dates, numbers, addresses, and the like) specification of transliteration schemes specification of codes for countries, languages, currencies, and scripts specification of special legal or administrative requirements consideration of any special applications pertinent to infor­ mation technology (telecommunications)

user needs

3.1 MULTILINGUALISM IN TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT consideration of the needs of certain processing methods and approaches (library practice and documentation, lexicogra­ phy and terminography, linguistic analysis, etc.) Software internationalization is one essential area where the problem of character set technology looms large. International­ ization involves the creation of programs that are originally fine-tuned to avoid potential linguistic and cultural interference. The next step in preparing programs for international markets is localization, which must satisfy two critical requirements: the program's user interface must be recreated in the natural lan­ guage of the target user, but retain its open (independent) form, while at the same time being adapted to the cultural realities of the discourse community. Nevertheless, many software products produced worldwide still only use a purely English user interface or can only pro­ cess data using the character set provided by the English alpha­ bet. Globally successful computer firms such as Microsoft, however, have for years been making far less money in Eng­ lish-speaking markets than they do in markets that don't use English as a mother tongue or as a strong second language. As a result, companies are much more amenable to investing mon­ ey and effort in creating user interfaces for language-specific markets where the language community either has enough speakers or enough purchasing power to make the investment interesting to the software company. This trend represents one of the most critical factors in the dilemma with respect to information technology and language policy: large computer firms work strictly on the profitability principle, which means that language communities that are very small (despite the high purchasing power of individual members, which is the case for many in Europe) or large language communities with very low purchasing power (Africa and Asia, etc.) are not interesting to them.



SEE Localization Vol II, 7.2.5

economic limitations


Even given the goodwill and the economic means to provide computer resources in any particular language, the ability to do so is still dependent on the availability of the appropriate script in a form that is widely accessible to everyone who has a need to use that script. (Isolated, non-standard solutions are of

scope of application



limited utility.) The number of scripts used throughout the world today is astonishingly great. While some scripts are used by a whole group of languages (Latin script, for instance, is actually used by hundreds of languages), there are many scripts that were created from their inception for a single specific language and are used today just for that language (and conse­ quently bear the same name as the language itself). Some of these scripts were invented by linguists in order to conduct re­ search on a given language that did not originally have any script, and a number of these scholarly writing systems have actually been adopted by the language communities in question. More and more of the individual script characters are being used in digital processing, which requires standardization for purposes of information technology. ISO/IEC 10646-1 (1993), which standardizes the digital representation of almost 20 scripts, constitutes a milestone in this regard. In comparison to over 150 documented scripts (both historic and contemporary), however, this is only a first step. Furthermore, linguists still need a uniform international graphic representation for the char­ acters used in most of the remaining scripts, not to mention digital representation for them as well. In extreme cases, the only way to produce some characters is to draw them out by hand (particularly in the case of cuneiform, hieroglyphics and other mostly historical scripts). Everson (1995) suggests a system for coding scripts in which the first character in the code is an uppercase letter, and the second is a lowercase letter (distinguishing these codes from the language codes, which consist of two lowercase letters, and the country codes, which use two uppercase letters). (See the Appendices to Volume II of the Handbook of Terminology Management.) With this combination of computer-processable codes it would be possible to express the fact that a piece of text was written in a certain country in a given language and represented in a specific script, while the same language may be written in a different script in a different country (e.g., Croatian and Serbian). Budin (1996) provides a second list that differs in content from the Eyerson list, which reflects uncer­ tainties in classifying certain items.

digital processing

script codes

Language Identifiers 1NFB 16:344



Script Conversion

Transliteration is more prone to dissension that almost any other aspect of language manipulation. It is difficult to deal with on both a theoretical and a practical level. First of all, we must make a distinction between transliteration and transcrip­ tion. There are numerous definitions, none of them mutually compatible, representing different methodological traditions and different theoretical linguistic assumptions. ISO/TC 46/SC 2 (the International Organization for Standardization's technical sub-committee that issues standards on transliteration within the framework of library practice and documentation) has defined the terms as follows:

transliteration transcription

transliteration an operation whereby the characters of an alphabetic writing system are represented by characters from an­ other alphabetic writing system transcription an operation whereby the characters of one writing system are represented by characters from another writ­ ing system, taking into account the pronunciation of the characters converted These two forms of writing system conversion often are inappropriately mixed in practice, i.e., some instances consti­ tute mixed forms. While transliteration in and of itself is lan­ guage-independent or at least should be, transcription is always of necessity language-specific. The results of the transcription of a word into different languages will consequently always produce varying results, whereas transliteration in such cases ought to produce uniform results. Furthermore, transliteration (in contrast to transcription) really ought to be reversible, which would require that there be an absolutely unambiguous, bidi­ rectional assignment of characters between any two script sys­ tems. The so-called CJK (Chinese/Japanese/Korean) languages can only be converted using transcription, since transliteration by definition only applies for alphabetic languages. One of the major problems is that numerous transliteration and transcription systems exist. A system that makes rich use of Latin character diacritics to represent the sounds of a lan­ guage will not work in an electronic environment limited to





lower or even upper ASCII. Scripts that have been used by numerous very different languages have been adapted to the phonetic requirements of those languages over the course of time, either by adding characters or by attaching diacritical marks to the base characters, or by leaving out characters if there is no "phonetic need" for them. Consequently, transcrip­ tion protocols that could be theoretically language-neutral may in fact be quite language-specific. For instance, witness the deviation in transliteration of the Cyrillic alphabet using various English, French, or German transliteration tables. By the same token, however, speakers of a Language 1/Script 1 may have notions as to how to represent their language in Language 2/Script 2 that differ significantly from the views of speakers of Language 2, which accounts for frequent lack of bidirectionality or uniformity in conversion schemes. Transliteration and transcription procedures are very strong­ ly associated with traditions in specific professions, such as in library practice, where many different customized sets of rules have been developed, often for use in a single library. This is another major reason why it seems almost impossible in many cases to achieve broad consensus and acceptance of translitera­ tion standards on an international basis. This situation is further compounded by the requirements of information technology: the committees responsible for standardizing the coding of character sets are insisting that only those characters be used for translit­ eration that are already included in ISO 10646, which has come to be viewed as the "Bible" of character set technology. All other characters are rejected for digital applications. This re­ quirement is unacceptable for linguists, however, because they have to use dozens of character sets that are not standardized for transliteration or for transcription, and what is even worse, existing transliteration standards include character sets that are also not included in ISO 10646. It can be hoped that future revisions and amendments to the standard will include a broader selection of special characters in order to provide for a full range of transliteration environments.

limited character sets




Character sets in alphabetical scripts are always sorted in accor­ dance with language-specific ordering rules, which can lead to ordering rules significant differences even within the range of a single script. This introduces a new level of complexity into the situation discussed at the beginning of this article with respect to multilingualism. Standards are being produced at both the inter­ national and the European level directed at solving these prob­ lems. ISO/TC 37/SC 2/WG 3 is preparing a document destined to become ISO 12199: Alphabetical ordering of multilingual terminological and lexicographical data represented in the Latin alphabet. CEN/TC 304 is developing a similar standard for Latin, Greek, and Cyrillic scripts. ISO TC 46 has also prepared Technical Report 8393:1995 on alphabetical sorting for biblio­ graphical applications. These standards are designed to facilitate the sorting of multilingual multilingual lists and other texts. In order to implement these lists standards in an electronic environment, it is necessary to spe­ cify a multi-level algorithm in which each character is assigned a specific position. These standards are, however, confronted with the problem that they conflict with other existing, mutually incompatible, sorting rules. Existing lists of characters that are considered to be essential for Latin script also exhibit incon­ sistencies in the lists that ideally need to be resolved. See the annotated bibliography in Volume II for a list of standards and other documents that deal with transliteration, transcription, and other character-set-related issues. REFERENCES

Budin, Gerhard. 1996. "Moderne Sprachnormung im Spannungsfeld zwischen Informationstechnologie und Sprachenpolitik." Sprachnormung und Sprachplanung: Festschrift für Otto Back zum 70. Geburtstag. Heiner Eichner, Peter Ernst, and Sergio Katsikas, eds. Vienna: Edition Praesens: 119-257. CEN/TC 304/PT 1. 1995. User requirements study and programming for standardization in thefieldof CST including multi-cultural support in IT. Cooper, Robert. 1989. Language Planning and Social Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Everson, Michael. 1995. Script Codes. E-mail message of 1995-10-31, draft for an ISO work item.



ISO 646:1991. Information technology — ISO 7-bit coded character set for information interchange. ISO 10646-1:1993. Information technology — Universal Multiple-Octet Coded Character Set (UCS) — Part 1: Architecture and Basic Multilingual Plane. ISO 12199. Alphabetical ordering of multilingual terminological and lexicographical data represented in the Latin alphabet. ISO/TR 8393:1985. Documentation—ISO Bibliographic Filing Rules

Section 3.2 Language Planning and Terminology Planning The Francophone Experience JOHN HUMBLEY 1


Language planning, and large-scale terminology planning in particular, is generally a solution to problems engendered by multilingualism and/or language standardization linked with economic development. Language and terminology planning in national, monolingual environments is therefore relatively ex­ ceptional. The long-standing exception is France, which has a long history of both status and corpus planning going back to the Renaissance. The édit de Viller-Cotterêts (15 August 1539) was the first explicit status-planning law, making French the only language of justice and government. Corpus planning for the general language, of a purely persuasive nature, was dele­ gated to the Académie française, founded in 1634/35, and special language to the sister Académie des sciences. This long history of language planning has given what is often termed dirigisme linguistique a legitimacy even among linguists, a policy that is usually contested in more laissez-faire Anglo-Saxon countries or misconstrued where recent history has effectively discredited all corpus planning initiatives by xeno­ phobic, purist actions. This chapter will therefore deal with terminology planning in France only, though with brief asides on related develop­ ments in other francophone countries, Québec in particular. 1.1

historical precedents

negative aspects

Bodies Concerned with Terminology Planning

Language and terminology planning goes far beyond the range of the official and unofficial language institutions dealt with here. The role that industrial standardization bodies play in this area (AFNOR—the Association Française de Normalisation) is generally recognized, but other important actors are more often

standardizing bodies



overlooked, such as the Ministry of Education, customs, trades and industry councils (syndicats professionnels), and large com­ panies (e.g., Aérospatiale, ELF-Aquitaine), not to mention dic­ tionary publishers. International organizations, such as the UN, UNESCO, and professional groups, such as the International Electrotechnical Commission or the International Federation of Welding, where French is both an official and a working language, also main­ tain activities that contribute to the standardization of some French usage, but as non-national bodies, these organizations fall outside the scope of this chapter. 1.2

French-Language Terminology Planning outside France

The major outside influence on French terminology planning over the last few decades has undoubtedly been Québec. In 1974, French was made the official language of the province and the Office de la langue française was put in charge of mak­ ing French the effective language, especially in the workplace. Terminology proved to be of vital importance in (re)introducing French as the language of work, and the experience gained over the years of the "Quiet Revolution" has provided a model for what is now known as aménagement linguistique, not only in France, but also in francophone African countries, many of which are setting up Offices des langues nationales, and even in non French-speaking areas such as Catalonia. 2

international organizations

language planning in Québec


In France, as in most Western countries, scientific terminolo­ gies have long been taken in hand by scientists themselves. This practice has given an important role to the Académie des sci­ ences, where, e. g., the nomenclature of modern chemistry was presented by Guiton de Morveau and Lavoisier, an example of consciously worked-out scientific language planning during the eighteenth century. It was, however, the Académie française that in 1933 created a Commission de la terminologie technique française moderne, an early forerunner of the many committees launched after the World War II.

French academies



The Reaction against Anglicisms in Post-War France

Impetus for corpus planning in the immediate post-war years came as a reaction against widespread borrowing from English, which affected French as it did most other Western European languages, albeit less extensively. The depth of feeling may be explained by dismay at the loss in international status experi­ enced by French, and the terminology planning initiatives, both public and private, can be viewed as part of the voluntary movement, also perceptible in science and industry, aimed at recovering lost ground. Initially, official moves toward terminology planning came from the Académie des sciences in 1952 (see Annex 1), but very soon a new strategy was developed: instead of entrusting terminology production to slow-moving official bodies, it was decided to form an association with government support. The first of these bodies was the Comité d'études des termes tech­ niques français, launched on 25 May 1954 by G. Combet and P. Agron with the support of the government and the national standards association AFNOR. This body, which is still active, has concentrated on technical rather than scientific vocabulary, and was most influential in the 1950s and 1960s. More official recognition of language planning came in 1966 when the Haut comité pour la défense et l'expansion de la langue was established through the efforts of Philippe Rossillon. The importance of this committee may be gauged by the fact that the it was placed under the direct responsibility of the prime minister. The Haut comité, which has changed names and certain features since its inception, has global responsibility for language and terminology policy. It has cooperated closely with a number of associations such as the CILF, AFTERM and FRANTERM, whose main tasks were terminographical in nature and which the CILF now continues on its own. The difficulty of implementing the terminology worked out by the various associations led the government to take matters into official hands and to enforce terminology in the domains covered by the government departments, both in their own documents and in areas under their jurisdiction. Committees were thus set up from 1970 on under the leadership of the Haut comité and its successors. Their legal status was defined over the ensuing years, and they were expressly charged with


Comité d'études des termes techniques français

language expansion

missing terms



identifying foreign terms to be replaced with French ones, or spotting gaps in terminology to be filled with appropriate terms, as Philippe Dreyfus had so successfully done with the term informatique. The work of these committees was given enhanced impor­ tance with the passage of the Bas-Lauriol act of 31 December 1975. Though expressly designed to protect the consumer and the wage-earner, it stipulates that French is to be used in adver­ tising, whatever the media, in contracts, and in other welldefined circumstances. The bill also prohibits the use of any foreign term when a French term exists. The authority adminis­ tering the law is the Consumer Protection Board (Bureau de répression des fraudes), and not a language authority, as in Québec. The effect was thus to impose those terms worked out by the Ministerial committees and to exclude the introduction of anglicisms. Starting in 1972, lists of terms officially adopted according to Bas-Lauriol legislation have been published in the Journal officiel de la République française. The application of the 1975 law was not without problems. It fell to an association, the AGULF (Association générale des usagers de la langue française), to prosecute offenders. Charges have been brought more often in the case of breaches in status rather than in corpus planning, such as job offers or safety notices printed in English only, though some cases have specifi­ cally involved the use of anglicisms, such as a case where a businessman termed his salle d'exposition a showroom. In 1989, a shake-up of the official language policy bodies led to the successor of the Haut comité, the Commissariat gén­ éral de la langue française, redynamized in 1981 by Philippe de Saint-Robert. The previous organization was replaced by a two-tiered system: a policy-drafting level, the Conseil supérieur de la langue française, presided over by the prime minister, and an executive level, the Délégation générale à la langue française (DGLF). The 1975 law had been brought up to date in 1986 notably by defining the role of the Ministerial committees. The terms officially published by the committees were legally enforceable for private persons and broadcasting under certain conditions. In 1994 a new law, informally known as the Loi Toubon after Jacques Toubon, the minister of culture who presented it before



policy coordination

private use & broadcasting



Parliament, sought to make the 1986 law more effective, but the Conseil constitutionnel found that imposing official termi­ nology on private persons and in broadcasting was contrary to the Declaration of human rights (Déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen). A décret of 3 July 1996 was introduced to define a new basis for official terminology. Under the new arrangement, the State limits its action to encouraging termi­ nology and disseminating the results. Actual terminology plan­ ning activities are entrusted to a general committee (Commission générale), which is placed under the authority of the Prime Minister. This committee takes up the terms proposed by the specialized committees (commissions spécialisées) set up in each ministry, submits them to the Académie française, and, if the ministries concerned have no objections, publishes them in the Journal officiel. This new organization was put into effect in late 1996, so the following description of the workings of the committee re­ fers to the proceeding period, when the committee published directly in the Journal officiel. 3


The ministerial committees are made up of civil servants and subject specialists named in the legislation establishing each specific committee. Other experts are frequently appointed. It is up to the committee to decide on the terms to be studied and to prepare the list for publication, with logistical and linguistic support from the DGLF. Before any final decision is made, proposed terms are sent to the CILF for approval or further study and, more recently, to official language bodies of other French-speaking countries. The terms are then vetted by the Académie française before being published in the Journal officiel and thereafter in the Dictionnaire des termes officiels. They are then binding within the limits set out in the preamble (see Appendix 2, p. 272, Arrêté du 27 mai 1992 relatif à la terminologie des transports). The actual methods used come closer to what the Québec school of terminology calls terminologie ponctuelle or ad hoc terminology, a form extensively practiced in translation ser­ vices. It may be defined as "distinguished from terminology and

committee membership

ad hoc terminology



terminology research, of which it is part, inasmuch as it is a technique for investigating a term or restricted group of terms for the purpose of satisfying an immediate need expressed by a user" (Celestin et ah 17). 3.2

The Ministerial Committee for Transport Terminology

To illustrate the actual workings of a committee, we shall con­ sider the example of transport terminology, with which the author has been associated. The committee is made up of a dozen sub-committees with sectorial interests. The subcom­ mittees are made up of subject specialists, translators, etc., who are for the most part not statutory members of the committee. Subcommittees meet quarterly and report back to the committee in plenary session (see Appendix 2, p. 272). 3.2.2

committee work

Examples of Transport Terminology

The commissions were originally set up to replace English loan words. This function has not disappeared, but the similar task of finding acceptable, transparent French translations for terms not yet fixed in the language now tends to be taking the upper hand. Other functions may come to the fore, especially when terms are to be used in broader circles than originally intended. • Replacement of long-established loan words—It is now rare for committees to suggest replacement for long-established English borrowings. One such under discussion is dispatch, first used in railroad terminology from the 1920s on and well established in related domains. Similarly, badge, made popular by the scouting movement at the beginning of the century, is currently used in a variety of domains, generally without any reference to current English-language usage. The legitimacy of such usage in French is questioned. • Replacement of recent loans—Crash test and airbag, anglicisms long used in German automobile terminology, started appearing in French contexts, primarily in advertisements by German car manufacturers. For the crash test, the Committee chose, essai de choc, the term traditionally used by the French automobile industry. For the airbag, they preferred sac gonflable, was put forward, a more highly motivated, i.e., more

longestablished borrowings

recent loan words

5.2.7 LANGUAGE PLANNING transparent, term than airbag: sac is used as the generic, and gonflable, meaning inflatable, indicates the means used to achieve the desired result. • Translations—Contrary to, say, German, certain English terms were never widely adopted in French, but the equivalents have also been fluctuating. One such term has been park and ride, for which various translations have been essayed over the last 30 years. The equivalent that found favor with town plan­ ners, though not with the motoring public, parc de dissuasion, was felt too negative to encourage motorists to use these facili­ ties. In addition, it was recognized that the logo P+R, com­ monly used in Northern Europe, could be adopted in France and it was felt appropriate to launch a term which corresponded to these initials. One early proposal that found approval in the Transport commission was the phonetically similar parc et rail, but this fell foul of bus line operators, who rightly objected that park and ride also covered public road transport. This led the Commission to reconsider the initial proposal, forego the P+R initials and adopt the more general expression of parc de liaison. This, however, was disapproved of by a consultant, the Centre d'études des transports urbains, which underlined the importance of having an internationally recognizable logo to designate this facility, and suggested pare relai to this effect. • Creation of paradigms—It has long been recognized in the committees that the most successful terms launched have been those that stimulate lexical creativity and form a paradigm. In the data processing field, such creations as logiciel (software) produced progiciel (software package), didacticiel (educational software, i.e., courseware), ludiciel (game software), or informatique (data processing, information management), which yields bureautique (office automation) and literally dozens of related terms. The transport committee has been active in this direction and the third list, given in Appendix 2, shows the series of monocorps, bicorps and tricorps. For the first term, the rather clumsy expression véhicule à un seul volume was used, though the English one box was rarely seen. On the other hand hatchback and notchback were appearing in the motoring press, and the committee preferred to adopt this more trans­ parent and unified solution. The use of over-explicit terms, such


loan translations




as véhicule à un seul volume, is viewed as counterproductive, as it is felt that such terms describe rather than name. • Regulating new concept fields—The committee was asked to fix terms for toll payment facilities on motorways, giving gare de péage (toll facilities), couloir de péage (toll lane), musoir (wing wall). Unfortunately, the piecemeal mode of publication tends to obscure the coherence of certain fields: télépéage (distant toll payment), for example, was included in a previous transport list. • Replacement of improper or misleading terms—One impor­ tant role of the committees is to replace or redefine terms that can lead to confusion. One such term is included in the list: écran antiéblouissement (anti-dazzle/anti-glare screen). This was proposed to complement the generally used antiéblouissant, which is reserved for a device that modifies the nature of the light coming from the source, whereas the screen simply pro­ tects against glare. The motorway authorities wanted a term to replace bande d'arrêt d'urgence, the usual designation of the emergency lane. The suggestion was to avoid arrêt, as it tempted motorists to stop and block the emergency lane; after all, a call of nature could be interpreted as an urgence. The new proposal was sim­ ply: bande d'urgence. However, the initials BAU are in fact in active use, indicating that the change may come too late. Improper terms may sometimes come from careless transla­ tion. Double stacking in freight transport was often rendered as double gerbage, whereas the term gerbage already indicates a superposition. • Acronyms and initialisms—More and more technical terms are made up of acronyms or initialisms, and these are often taken over directly from English. As the motivation of these terms is very limited, one strategy has been to find a French coinage that corresponds to the English acronym. Thus high cube and super high cube, known in railway circles as HC and SHC have been given the equivalents hors cotes and super hors cotes respectively. • Synonyms—One of the aims of terminology in the frame­ work of industrial standardization is to eliminate synonyms. The ministerial committees, on the other hand, tend to propose

concept fields

confusing terms

term replacement





several terms in order to give usage a chance. This is justified by the fact that the terms under discussion are in the process of banalisation, of being used by a broader spectrum of users than originally intended. Viewed in this light, well-motivated, i.e., highly self-explanatory, terms are to be actively preferred, even if it is not initially clear which precise motivation will find favor with the public. This is why, e.g., hub is given as pivot, plate-forme, and moyeu, all equivalents actually found in the re­ levant literature. 4



Work Already Done

Many previous studies have been conducted on the workings of the terminology committees, both by linguists and government experts. One group of studies carried out by the Groupe d'études sur le plurilinguisme européen of Strasbourg in the mid-eighties concentrated on the data-processing field. The studies suggested that although the work of the committees was little known and the idea of linguistic interventionism had been rejected, a fairly high proportion of official terms were actually used by subject specialists, especially in their contacts with nonspecialists, both in education and in commerce. The inten­ sive use of splinters (fracto-morphèmes), such as -tique, -iciel, was, however, criticized by some linguists for obscuring the already complex motivation of French morphology. 4.2

Future Work

In 1992-93 the Délégation générale à la langue française financed a number of studies designed to gauge the actual penetration of official terminology in a wide variety of fields. The reports are due to be published in late 1996, but preliminary results were presented at a seminar organized by Rint in 1993 (Rint 1994).

results analysis


LANGUAGE POLICY AND TECHNOLOGY Structure of an article Headword : The officialized term Grammatical category : The part of speech Field : Subject field and, where applicable, subfield Abbreviation : (optional) Definition : Note : (optional) - other legitimate usages - usages to be avoided - technical note See also : (optional) related terms See : (optional) Reference to headword of preferred term English (or other language) : Equivalent term in English, usually the loan to be replaced

Figure 1: Article (Term Entry) Layout REFERENCES

Bessé, Bruno de. 1990. "L'état terminologue:peut mieux faire." Terminologie et traduction, 1. Luxembourg: CEE, 87-100 Celestin, T., G. Godbout, and P. Vachon L'Heureux. 1984. Méthodologie de la recherche terminologique ponctuelle. Essai de définition. Québec: Office de la langue française. Rint (Réseau international de néologie et de terminologie). 1994. "Implantation des termes officiels," Actes du séminaire, Rouen, décembre 1993. Terminologies nouvelle, 12. Sager, Juan C. 1990. A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.



APPENDIX 1 Important dates in French terminology 1933 Commission de la terminologie technique française moderne founded in the Académie française 1952 Conseil du langage scientifique established by the Académie des sciences 1954 Comité consultatif du langage scientifique, reorganization of the Conseil du langage scientifique 1954 Comité d'études des termes techniques français established 1964 Comité d'étude des termes médicaux established in the Académie de médecine 1966 Haut comité pour la défense et l'expansion de la langue française established under the responsibility of the prime minister 1967 Conseil international de la langue française established by Alain Guillermou 1970 First ministerial committees for terminology start work 1970 Agence de coopération culturelle et technique established 1972 Enactment enabling the establishment of Ministerial committees of terminology. 1973 Haut comité pour la défense et l'expansion de la langue française becomes Haut comité de la langue française 1975 Association française de terminologie (AFTERM) established to produce up-to-date terminography 1975 Bas-Lauriol act to protect wage-earners and consumers and impose labelling and publish­ ing in French 1976 Association générale des usagers de la langue française established by Alain Guillermou and supported by the Haut comité 1981 FRANTERM replaces AFTERM as producer of terminology 1983 Commissariat général de la langue française created to replace the Haut comité de la langue française 1986 Law on the enrichment of the French language 1986 Réseau international de néologie et de terminologie (Rint) founded to coordinate terminology work in French-speaking countries 1987 Creation of the Centre de terminologie et de néologie, as a research centre, in the Institut national de la langue française, CNRS, replacing certain activities of FRANTERM 1987 Creation of Universités des Réseaux d'expression française (UREF), with a program in lexicography, terminology and translation and is part of the Association des univeristés partiellement ou entièrement de langue française (AUPELF 1961) 1988 Research network (Lexicologie, terminologie, traduction) set up in the francophone university network (Universités des réseaux d'expression françaises of the Association des universités partiellement ou entièrement de langue française) 1989 Conseil supérieur de la langue française and Délégation générale à la langue française created in replacement of the Commissariat général de la langue française 1992 First Université d'automne de terminologie, Université de Rennes 2 1994 "Loi Toubon" modified to exclude private persons and broadcasting from the scope of enforcement of official terms 1996 New legal basis for the enrichment of the French language




Arrêté du 27 mai 1992 relatif à la terminologie des transports NOR: EQUA9200603A Le ministre d'Etat, ministie de l'éducation nationale et de la culture, et le ministre de l'équipe­ ment, du logement et des transports, Vu la loi n°75-1349 du 31 décembre 1975 relative à l'emploi de la langue française; Vu le décret n° 86-439 du 11 mars 1986 relatif à l'enrichissement de la langue française; Vu le décret n°89-403 du 2 juin 1989 instituant un Conseil supérieur de la langue française et une délégation générale à la langue française; Vu l'arrêté du 18 décembre 1985 portant création de la commission de terminologie des transports, Sur proposition de ladite commission; Vu l'avis de la délégation générale à la langue française; Vu l'avis du Conseil international de la langue française, Arrêtant: Art. 1er. - Les expressions et termes inscrits en annexe 1 du présent arrêté sont approuvés. Ils seront obligatoirement utilisés: 1 ° Dès la publication du présent arrêté: - dans les décrets; - dans les arrêtés, circulaires, instructions et directives des ministres; - dans les correspondances et documents de quelque nature que ce soit qui émanent des adminstrations, services ou établissements publics de l'Etat; - dans les textes des marchés et contrats auxquels l'Etat ou les établissements publics de l'Etat sont parties; - dans les informations ou présentations de programmes de radio-diffusion ou de télévision; - dans les éditions ou rééditions des ouvrages d'enseignement, de formation ou de recherche utilisés dans les établissements, institutions ou organismes dépendant de l'Etat, placés sous son autorité ou soumis à son contrôle, ou bénéficiant de son concours financier à quelque titre que ce soit; 2° Dans un délai de six mois après la publication du présent arrêté: - dans les textes, documents et inscriptions mentionnés dans la loi n°75-1349 du 31 décembre 1975 relative à l'emploi de la langue française. Art. 2. - Il est joint au présent arrêté une annexe II constituée d'un index alphabétique anglaisfrançais, une annexe III constituée d'un index allemand-français et une annexe IV formée d'un index alphabétique des termes et impropriétés à éviter. Art. 3. - Le présent arrêté, assorti de ses annexes, sera publié au Journal officiel de la Répub­ lique française. Fait à Paris, le 27 mai 1992.

Le ministre d'Etat, de l'éducation nationale et de la culture JACK LANG

Le ministre de l'équipement, du logement et des transports JEAN-LOUIS BIANCO



ANNEXE I antiéblouissant, adj. Domaine: Transport/Transport routier. Voir: écran antiéblouissement arrière-pays portuaire, n. m. Domaine: Transport/Transport maritime. Définition: Zone d'influence et d'attraction économique d'un port. Note: Dans l'usage, l'emploi du terme arrière-pays est fréquent. Allemand: Hinterland autocaravane à cellule, n.f. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Définition: Autocaravane fabriquée sur la base d'un ensemble châssis-cabine par adjonction d'une cellule habitable. autocaravane intégrale, n.f. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Définition: Autocaravane fabriquée sur la base d'un châssis nu entièrement carrossé. autocariste, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Transport routier. Définition: Entrepreneur ou entreprise de transport par autocar. bicorps, adj. ou n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile Définition: [Se dit d'un] Véhicule dont le profil présente un décrochement à la base du pare-brise mais non à l'arrière. Note: 1. Pour désigner un véhicule bicorps, on utilise également l'expression véhicule à deux volumes. 2. Un véhicule bicorps comporte généralement une porte vitrée sur la face arrière. Voir aussi: monocorps, tricorps. Anglais: hatchback. couloir de péage, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Transport routier. Définition: Passage aménagé sur une voie de circulation pour la perception du péage. Anglais: toll lane. coussin gonflable, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Voir: sac gonflable. défaillant, -e, adj. Domaine: Transport/Transport aérien - Transport ferroviaire. Définition: [Se dit d'un] Voyageur qui n'utilise pas la réservation effectuée en sa faveur. Anglais: no show.

délestage, n.m. Domaine:


274 Définition:

LANGUAGE POLICY AND TECHNOLOGY 1. En transport aérien, suspension momentanée d'un ou plusieurs vols régu­ liers. 2. En transport routier, déviation momentanée et éventuellement sélective d'un flux de circulation, destinée à résorber des encombrements.

écran antibruit, n.m. Domaine: Transport. Définition: Dispositif de protection contre les nuisances sonores, destiné à diminuer la gêne des riverains. écran antiéblouissement, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Transport routier. Définition: Diapositif au sol destiné à éviter l'éblouissement dû aux projecteurs des véhi­ cules circulant en sens inverse. Note: Le terme antiéblouissement s'applique plutôt à un diapostif modifiant la nature de la lumière émise par des projecteurs. essai de choc, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Définition: Essai consistant à réaliser, dans une configuration donnée, un choc de véhi­ cule(s) pour en apprécier le comportement global ou partiel, notamment du point de vue de la sécurité. Anglais: crash test. gare de péage, Domaine: Définition: Voir aussi:

n.f. Transport/Transport routier. Ensemble des installations liées, en site donné, à la perception du péage. couloir de péage.

imprévu, -e, adj. ou n. Domaine: Transport/Transport aérien - Transport ferroviaire. Définition: Pour les transports soumis à la réservation, [se dit d'un] voyageur sans réserva­ tion prêt à utiliser une place disponible. Note: 1. Dans les transports aériens particulièrement, les termes sans réservation ou S.R. sont utilisés 2. Le terme < > ne doit pas être utilisé. information embarquée, n.f. Domaine: Transport. Définition: Ensemble de données mises en mémoire à l'intérieur d'un véhicule et apportant une aide à la navigation ou à la conduite avec ou sans complément reçu de l'extérieur. Anglais: in-car information, on-board information. maxicorde, adj. ou n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Définition: [Se dit d'un] Véhicule utilitare dont le poids ou les dimensions atteignent la valeur maximale autorisée par la réglementation. monocorps, adj. ou n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile.

5.2.7 LANGUAGE PLANNING Définition: Note: Voir aussi: Anglais:


[Se dit d'un] Véhicule dont le profil ne présente de décrochement ni à l'avant ni à l'arrière. Pour désigner un véhicule monocorps, on utilise également l'expression véhicule à un seul volume. bicorps, tricorps. one box.

moyeu, n.m. Domaine: Voir:

Transport. pivot.

musoir, n.m. Domaine: Définition: Note:

Transport/Transport routier. Pointe extrême située à la séparation de deux voies de circulation de même sens. Le musoir ne doit pas être confondu avec sa balise de signalisation.

panneau à message variable, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Transport terrestre - Transport aérien. Abbréviation: P.M.V., n.m. Définition: Panneau de signalisation comportant un dispositif télé-commandé permettant d'afficher des messages instantanément modifiables. Anglais: variable message sign (VMS). parc à étages, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Transport routier. Définition: Parc de stationnement souterrain ou aérien comportant plusieurs niveaux. Note: Le terme < > ne doit pas être utilisé. pivot, n.m. Domaine: Définition:

Note: Anglais:

Transport. Point de concentration et de rayonnement des marchandises ou des voyageurs regroupant des compagnies de transport importantes et des entreprises, situé au centre d'un réseau de plates-formes routières, ferroviaires, aéroportuaires ou fluviales. Les termes plate-forme et moyeu sont également utilisés dans ce sens. hub.

plate-forme, n.f. Domaine: Transport. Voir: pivot. P.M.V., n.m. Domaine: Voir:

Transport/Transport terrestre - Transport aérien. panneau à message variable.

sac gonflable, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Synonyme: coussin gonflable, n.m. Définition: Dispositif de sécurité constitué par une enveloppe souple qui, en cas de choc, se gonfle instantanément en s'interposant entre l'occupant et le volant ou la planche de bord.

276 Anglais:


sans réservation, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Transport aérien - Transport ferroviaire. Voir: imprévu. tricorps, adj. ou n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Definition: [Se dit d'un] Véhicule dont le profil présente un décrochement à la base du pare-brise et à la lunette. Note: 1. Pour désigner un véhicule tricorps, on utilise égalaement l'expression véhi­ cule à trois volumes. 2. Généralement, un véhicule tricorps ne possède pas de porte vitrée sur la face arrière. Voir aussi: bicorps, monocorps. Anglais: notchback. véhicule à un volume, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Voir: monocorps. véhicule à deux volumes, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Voir: bicorps. véhicule à trois volumes, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Voir: tricorps. véhicule loisir travail, n.m. Domaine: Transport/Automobile. Abréviation: V.L.T., n.m. Définition: Véhicule tout terrain ou tous chemins, généralement à toutes roues motrices, à vocation utilitaire et à usage de loisirs. Anglais: sport utility vehicle (SUV).


ANGLAIS airbag crash test hatchback hub in-car information, on-board information no show notchback one box sport utility lane (SUV) toll lane variable message sign (VMS)

sac gonflable, coussin gonflable essai de choc bicorps pivot information embarquée défaillant, -e tricorps monocorps véhicule loisir travail (V.L.T.) couloir de péage panneau à message variable (P.M.V.) ANNEXE III Index allemand-français

ALLEMAND Hinterland

FRANÇAIS arrière-pays portuaire

ANNEXE IV Index des termes et impropriétés à éviter FORME IMPROPRE go show parc en structure

FORME RETENUE imprévu, -e parc à étages


4 Intellectual Property Rights

Section 4.1 Copyright and Terminology CHRISTIAN GALINSKI AND SUE ELLEN WRIGHT 1


The theory of intellectual property evolved originally along with the development of the concept of natural law and was first recognized legally in England early in the eighteenth century. It forms the fundamental basis for authors' rights and inventors' rights, and is closely related to the protection of industrial designs, trade secrets, and trademarks. The Berne Convention of 1886 was the first major international agreement to lay down rules and procedures for protecting intellectual property rights (IPRs), specifically as they pertain to printed materials. The Convention has been revised and supplemented for more than a century in order to cope with changing conditions, but due to increased internationalism and new commercial, technical, and legal realities, both the core concept of authors' rights and copyright, as well as the mechanisms for enforcing these rights, are the subject of serious discussion. At the same time, sweep­ ing changes are affecting the nature of the works protected by these rights and the media on which these works are stored. The primary "players" with respect to copyright have tradi­ tionally been, at one end of the spectrum, authors (originators) of intellectual property (works) and users at the other, with a variety of other parties—secondary copyright holders (e.g., publishers and licensees), distribution centers, collecting socie­ ties, and agents, to name a few—situated "in between". Conse­ quently, one should not assume that the purpose of copyright is strictly to protect copyright holders' economic and authors' moral rights to exploit their creations. The US Constitution, for instance, states that a strong primary purpose involves the promotion of "the Progress of Science and useful Arts", which in effect encompasses the advantages that copyright affords to all (Lehman 1995: I.A.2.). Because of copyright, authors and originators of information can make their work available for

intellectual property rights

authors and users



public use on the assumption that the law will protect their in terests in the event of willful infringement. As discussed earlier in this book, sound terminological me­ thodology dictates that term entries contain substantial suppor­ tive material in the form of text chunks, e.g., definitions and contexts. Furthermore, these materials should not be the sole creation of the terminologist, but rather should be taken from authoritative sources. Thus, each terminological entry is very likely to contain at least one or, in some cases, numerous refer­ ences taken from published, proprietary, or standardized works. In addition to being frequent users of existing texts, how­ ever, terminologists collect information (sometimes called collaging), which they either reserve for their own use or share with others, either gratis or for a fee. Consequently, most terminology collections can be viewed as compilations in the sense of the copyright law, i.e., works "formed by the collec­ tion and assembling of preexisting materials or of data that are selected, coordinated, or arranged in such a way that the result­ ing work as a whole constitutes an original work of authorship" (US Copyright Protection Act of 1988). It is based on this definition, if at all, that terminologists may themselves claim copyright protection for their products. This chapter explores the dual relation of the terminologist as both consumer and provider of potentially copyrightable ma­ terial, examines the position of terminological works within the scope of copyright law, and views the future of copyright pro­ tection for terminologies, particularly in electronic network en­ vironments. It also considers the role of terminologists them­ selves with respect to ownership of their works. 2


terminologists as users

terminologists as authors

electronic networks


Copyrightable Works

"Authors' rights are a kind of property right granted to the cre­ ator of a work (the author) to his or her own individual intellec­ tual work or industrial design" (Creifelds: 1215). An intellectual work can be viewed as consisting of content, as well as of in­ ternal and external form. Original individual intellectual crea­ tivity can reside in the content or in the form, but information

authors ' rights

4.1 COPYRIGHT AND TERMINOLOGY and ideas themselves are not protected by copyright law, nor do the ideas in protected works have to be novel in the sense that patent protection requires novelty. What is covered by national laws and international conven­ tions is the original expression and arrangement of knowledge. Consequently, anyone is free to express facts and ideas, what­ ever the source, but existing formulations of an idea are pro­ tected, provided that they have been fixed in a tangible me­ dium, which can take the form of the printed page, audio or visual media (film, video, records, tapes, compact disks, etc.), and other carriers or embodiments of the original work. This protection exists from the moment that the material is "fixed", e.g., "when the ink dries on the paper" (Lehman 1995: Note 53). Protected primary works include works of literature, sci­ ence, and art, (e.g., novels, textbooks, essays), as well as speeches, musical works and sound recordings, choreographed works (ballet) and pantomimes, visual arts (e.g., paintings and sculpture), architecture and the applied arts (e.g., artistic wrought iron articles and woodworking), as well as photo­ graphic, cinematographic, and video works. Under the category of derivative works, adaptations and translations can also be protected by national and international laws and conventions, but original authors must approve the act of derivation and are frequently remunerated for doing so, either in the form of a one-time payment or in royalties. Creators of derivative works, however, claim copyright for the entire new work, provided the copyright registry judges the work to be a new and original creation. Terminologies would probably not be categorized as derivative works unless the entirety or a substantial part of a highly definition-laden text were converted into a series of terminology entries. The essential criterion in determining copyrightability is that a work must always represent a personal, original intellectual creation. It may be the creation of an individual, or it may represent the product of a corporate author, i.e., a group effort (like this article). The authors have conducted their research based on current European and American laws, but are very aware that their findings may not apply outside these venues. Although international agreements and conventions exist, the







conditions specified by the country in which a work is actually published are the only valid rules that apply to that work. Readers are cautioned to familiarize themselves with the specific current provisions of their own copyright regulations as they pertain to the kinds of situations described in this article. 2.2

Moral Rights vs. Anglo-American Copyright

As noted above, significant differences prevail among regional and national laws and practices. For instance, European law (and indeed the fundamental principle of the Berne Convention) focuses on the author's moral rights, which include the right of publication, the right to be recognized as the author of a work, and the right to prevent misrepresentation or unauthorized modification of a work. These rights are associated with an author's person and are nontransferable. Anglo-American copyright protection, on the other hand, stresses the commercial exploitation of works, which involves the following rights of use: the right to reproduce the work, the right to prepare derivative works, the right to distribute copies (which involves the right of first sale), the right to perform the work publicly, and the right to display the work publicly. Un­ like authors' moral rights, copyright can be sold or otherwise transferred. In both systems, rights of use are associated with derivative and subsidiary, sometimes called neighboring, rights pertaining to such details as the right to license duplication masters or the rights afforded lending libraries. These rights can be exploited by authors themselves, or they can be granted individually or in toto to third parties in the form of exclusive or nonexclusive licenses. Authors also have the option of waiv­ ing their exclusive rights and making their work freely available to the public. The term of copyright protection varies from country to country. It may be a set number of years or last for the length of the author's lifetime plus an optional extension period, after which a work is considered to be in the public domain, which means that it may then be freely used by all with proper attribution. For instance, the works of Shakespeare, Molière, Tolstoy and many more recent classics are in the public domain. Authors' rights and copyright are limited by the fair use doctrine. Fair use involves the incorporation of short (minimal)

moral rights

copyright derivative rights

fair use



excerpts from a copyrighted work into another work, accom­ panied by a citation of the source. (Without proper citation, reuse constitutes plagiarism, regardless of copyright status.) Fair use does not require permission or payment of royalty fees. Generally, fair use is appropriate for nonprofit or educa­ tional purposes. It is also limited by a number of factors, the most significant of which affecting terminology management include the size and the substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole. We will look at fair use again with specific reference to the compilation of terminological resources (see below, pp. 285, 288). 2.3

The Sui Generis Right

The European Database Directive (96/9/EC of 1996-03-11) has created a new state of affairs with respect to databases per se by defining a new so-called sui generis right. The objective of this new right is to protect previously non-copyrightable information contained in databases. The new right affects not only databases in electronic form, but also data collections stored on conventional media. The General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs and the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (GATT/TRIPS ), on which these guidelines are at least par­ tially based, states in Article 10(2): Compilations of data or other material, whether in machine read­ able or other form, which by reason of the selection or arrange­ ment of their contents constitute intellectual creations, shall be protected as such. Such protection, which shall not extend to the data or material itself, shall be without prejudice in any copyright subsisting in the data or material itself. (GATT 1994) Copyright protection under the Directive expressly covers the entire database or any substantial portion thereof. Fair use extrac­ tion of non-substantial segments is allowed. Case law will have to establish the exact scope of fair use in the context of the sui generis right, however. The scope of fair use would at least theoretically depend on the interpretation of a new database as a derivative work and a determination of whether merging, re­ ordering, and otherwise manipulating data has resulted in a work that exhibits substantial similarity to the "concept and feel of the [original] work" (Lehman 1995: Note 331) or substantial similarity between the intended audiences for the two works.


substantial similarity



The sui generis right affords afifteen-yearterm of protection, but any comprehensive review ("substantial verification") of the content in a database that requires significant new investment can be considered just cause for extending the term of protection. The EU Directive extends "... protection under this directive ... to the materials necessary for the operation or consultation of certain databases such as thesaurus or indexation systems" (Directive 96/9/EC 1996), but it does not include "mere" facts and data. Indeed, the protection provided by this Directive does not cover content and leaves any existing rights to content untouched. This means that terminological data themselves have to be protected in some other way. 2.4

Enforcement of Authors' Rights and Copyright

Authors' rights and copyright are protected by both national and international law and treaties against willful criminal infringement, with a distinction between misdemeanor and felony offenses drawn according to the amount of monetary damages involved. Under the provisions of some national laws, copyright holders may also sue for civil damages and force violators to destroy unauthorized re­ productions or confiscate copies and any special masters or devices used to produce them. 3



The protection of authors' rights with respect to the transfer and reuse of terminological data or their use to prepare derivative works not only involves the application of the above-cited protec­ tion for intellectual property rights, but also draws on peripheral rights derived from laws governing unfair competition and trade secrets, as well as contract law. 3.1

protecting content

peripheral rights

The Copyrightability of Multilingual Terminologies

In the field of terminology, intellectual property could potentially encompass: • all or parts of the terminology management system • reproduction methods and techniques • representations of content, including: • all types of terms and graphical symbols • all types of definitions and other descriptive texts

protectable elements

4.1 COPYRIGHT AND TERMINOLOGY • source information • administrative information • cross-references linking entries, data files, etc. In principle, every kind of information and knowledge repre­ sentation, from text data, to alphanumeric data, mathematical and chemical formulas, and even audio-visual representations can also occur in terminology databases (TDBs). 3.2

Current Case Law

Existing judicial decisions and precedents—encompassed by the term case law in English—on copyright as it affects lexical content clearly do not view the following items as worthy or capable of being protected as units of intellectual property: • names (with the exception of registered trademarks and trade names, which are extremely well protected) • facts • lists of observations • words and idioms (collocations and phraseological units) Generally speaking, one can safely say that units smaller than a complete sentence cannot be construed as copyrightable. Copyright requires that material be stamped by the individual intellect of the creator, which can be difficult to demonstrate in very short, unsub­ stantial excerpts. In current European and American case law, the systematic, content-oriented development and arrangement of high-quality terminologies (e.g., in terminology standardization or the creation of documentation thesauri) does not qualify data for copyright protection, nor does the integrity of definitions that are frequently formulated by expert groups working for days and weeks to arrive at ideal results. Nor is it likely that the intellectual creation and effort involved in assigning (not just translating!) foreign language equivalents to terms or thesaurus descriptors qualify these activities for copyright protection under the new EU Directive. When trying to evaluate TDBs, it is necessary to look at the copyrightability of individual pieces of information from two pers­ pectives. Some items can be viewed as data categories in the terminological entry (e.g., terms, sentences in contexts, definitions, etc.). Others are more interesting in terms of the data types that they represent (graphic images, formulas, and the like). We have

non-protected units

noncopyrightable elements

data categories data types



already noted the fact that specific data categories are not covered. According to current European and American law, minimum units of some data types, such as photos or certain kinds of formulas, are very well protected either by general practice or by certain US precedents, while other types of information, some of which involve significantly greater intellectual and creative investment, are ex­ cluded from protection or are only weakly protected. Viewed as individual items, the reuse of definitions and contexts to document terminological entries has traditionally been classified as fair use because these items are viewed as unsubstantial. In termi­ nologies treating the special languages of limited subject areas, however, it is not uncommon for a sizable amount of material (albeit in numerous short passages) to be taken from one or a small number of sources. Nevertheless, advice from knowledgeable ex­ perts in both the United States and the European Union has indi­ cated that under current rules in these countries, even these cases constitute fair use. This state of affairs favors the terminologist who wants to use existing contextual and definitional material in TDBs and works to the disadvantage of those who want to protect their data collections. Standard definitions are frequently reused in other standards, in general and technical texts, and in TDBs, accompanied by attri­ bution under the provisions of fair use. Where large numbers of standard definitions are used (e.g., the addition of ASTM defini­ tions to the NASA Thesaurus), a precedent has been established whereby the National Aeronautics and Space Administration re­ quests permission from the American Society for Testing and Materials to reprint definitions, and the source is duly cited. This practice implies that the standards organization would like to support the notion that standard definitions are self-contained units of expression and therefore can be viewed as substantial in themselves. Although this precedent has been established in practice between ASTM and "friends" of the society working in other venues, no case law exists to support enforcement in an adversarial environment. The common lexicographical practice of slightly modifying definitions or contextual material in order to circumvent copyright restrictions is anathema for the conscientious terminologist: only authentic material, especially in the case of standardized definitions, is valid as documentation for specialized terminology.

unsubstantial reuse


modified definitions



Until fairly recently, the legal situation affecting the protection of intellectual property rights reflected a balance that had evolved organically over the decades among the rights of the author, those of the intermediate exploiter, and those of the end user. Currently, however, change dynamics threaten to break down this balance. A number of factors exerting pressure to force the modification of existing copyright protection include: • technical developments and their influence on the representa­ tion and re-utilization of such works or on the right to create derivative works, for instance on the Internet • difficulties defining the minimum unit of intellectual property (i.e., the smallest protectable unit), coupled with evolving methods for unequivocally identifying such units • judicial, technical, and practical procedures for enforcing these rights 4.1


pressure for change

Digitization and Information Growth

Modern electronic technology reduces all kinds of information and knowledge representation to digital form as strings of 1s and Os that are meaningless to all humans, with the possible exception of a few expert technicians. Computer hardware and software tech­ nology increasingly enable us to record and process complex infor­ mation and knowledge simultaneously in various languages and in different forms of representation. Digital technology allows for the storage of a "work" representing intellectual property—including terminological entries. Once the data has been successfully stored, it is necessary to utilize an electronic retrieval system to output the data in the form of physical reproduction, e.g., hardcopy paper printouts, screen displays, or performance—musical production, for instance (Clark 1993). The digitization of information has generated an evolutionary spiral with respect to both the exponential growth of information itself and the media on which it is stored and presented to the public for consumption. Networking technology, multimedia stor­ age, processing, retrieval, and presentation capability, as well as innovative product distribution, all combine to create a new envi­ ronment for both the producers and consumers of knowledge products, including terminological data. These methodologies have


INFO Product Media INFB 20:343 Hypertext INFB 12:341



converged to revolutionize the hitherto largely static and linear representation of information and knowledge, resulting in dynamic, even multidimensional representations (e.g., hyper- and multi­ media, or even virtual reality). In the course of these developments, the borderlines between computer hardware (storage media in particular) and software on the one hand, and data, texts, and other forms of representation on the other hand have become blurred. It is, for instance, possible to create hardware-implemented electronic technical dictionaries in which the terminological data are inseparably combined with the respective data reproduction programs stored in a ROM module that can only be used with a certain system design and hardware. Linguistic, musical, visual, or cinematic works can be called up on screen, changed, manipulated,fragmented,or added to in every conceivable way almost effortlessly and virtually seamless­ ly as well. At the same time, author identification can be changed or eradicated. The manipulated text can then be uploaded to the data network without any difficulty. This environment significant­ ly endangers the right of the creator or the copyright holder to be cited by name and to protect the integrity of the work and com­ promises the public interest in ensuring its authenticity (Vogel 1996b). 4.2 Terminological Data in Digitized Environments We have already stressed the lack of protection for many indivi­ dual elements of terminological data. Given these considerations, the protection of terminological intellectual property can only pertain to the representation of information, i.e., to its form, which is not, however, necessarily a stable commodity. Digitization itself requires a conversion process even as data are entered in the system, and their presence opens up unlimited possibilities for pro­ cessing, converting, re-utilizing, and distributing all types of infor­ mation without reference or recourse to the original author or copyright holder. This uncertain environment is further exacerbated by the evo­ lution of interchange formats (e.g., ISO Draft International Stan­ dard (DIS) 12200, the Machine-Readable Terminology Interchange Format (MARTIF)). The format is designed specifically to facil­ itate the reorganization of information from one database archi­ tecture to another. In other words, information from a source database is stripped of its distinctive structures when it enters the

hardwaredependent products

data manipulation


SEE Terminology Interchange Vol. II, 8.1.5



MARTIF format and can emerge into totally new structures upon conversion into target databases. If, as we have asserted, copyright depends on expression and form, can it remain valid in an environ­ ment where data structures dissolve during conversion, only to be reborn in another guise? 4.3

Technical Developments and Legal Adjustments

Recent technical developments have not only bypassed the legal standards and rights cited above. Their very basis has been ques­ tioned. The reuse of data and the creation of derivative works de­ pends on a reproduction process and the appropriate software program(s). "Copying" in the classical sense has become a moot question in this context. "Besides, duplication occurs in digital form and no 'physical' reproduction as such occurs. Printout and data transfer accomplish the condition of duplication..." (Vogel 1996a), but how do database queries relate to these concerns? Does calling up a work from a database represent: • a special kind of electronic distribution • transmission in the sense of the copyright law • an instance of public retransmission ("successive public display") Vogel (1996a) makes a case for a "digital transmission right" as a kind of previously unregulated reproduction right reserved for the author. With respect to the right of use, "three different actions com­ prise the central activities involved in the digital exploitation of a work—digital storage, transmission, and the retrieval of data from online services. Of these, experts have long agreed that saving data qualifies as duplication of the work in question and consequently is reserved as the author's right. Digital transmission also fells under the broadly defined transmission provision of the current copyright law. Legal re-evaluation is in order, however, for the exploitation of works via retrieval from online services" (Vogel 1996a). The degree of protection afforded by the law or, respec­ tively, the need for additional protection, varies depending on which right or rights might be involved.

digital transmission

digital exploitation




Although it remains unclear to what extent individual units of data used in TDBs are copyrightable, the definition and identification of basic units of intellectual property constitute an essential step toward an environment where the use of data can be tracked and properly remunerated. Indeed, through such tracking, the relation of authors to individual elements may remain intact. Reliable monitoring (i.e., recording and billing) of data use in dynamic network environments is predicated on the notion that elementary units of data can be marked by robust labels embedded within the data stream. The Information Infrastructure Task Force (IITF) terms such markup steganography, sometimes called "digitalfingerprinting"or "digital watermarking".

digital watermarking

5.1 Multifunctional Identification The precise identification of copyright-protected data will not only make it easy to record and manipulate information about authors, originators, and central distributors. It will also help solve a series of other problems, such as: • Data security—by enhancing mechanisms for preventing data loss as well as curtailing intentional and unintentional data manipulation • Data protection—by systematically preventing the transmission or transfer of secret or confidential proprietary data • Accounting—by systematically facilitating fair recording and billing practices based on the detailed identification of retrieved data • Product liability—by more easily identifying the author, origina­ tor, or other party responsible for the data Even though the identification of minimum units initially looks as if it might complicate matters, such a comprehensive automatic documentation system encompassing all communications and the entire filing and archiving system would aid in managing the "cor­ porate memory" of institutions and organizations and significantly reduce paper consumption. Such a system would also enable or at least simplify corporate knowledge management, including version control throughout document or database life, even allowing a high degree of granularity down to the data field level.

direct benefits

corporate memory



Coding Systems

Because of cultural and linguistic differences, not to mention standard codes differences in points of view, uniform identification systems will be essential in order to ensure proper system function. There is nothing that will not have to be documented in the digital envi­ ronment—books, articles, music, films or what have you—but development trends in modern software and new approaches in information science will readily support this requirement. A series of standardized identification systems exists, e.g.: • ISBN - International Standard Book Numbering (ISO 2108) • ISSN - International Standard Serial Numbering (ISO 3297) • ISRC - International Standard Recording Code (ISO/DIS 3901) • ISRN - International Standard Technical Report Number (ISO 10444) • ISMN - International Standard Music Number (ISO 10957) Other International Standards issued by ISO/TC 46/SC 9 on the sub-coding presentation, identification and description of documents (e.g., treating electronic documents) contain methods of identification as well as related principles. Up until now, however, these criteria have been applied to entire works and not to parts of works. Con­ sequently, both the coding systems cited above and any others that may be developed will require expansion to create sub-codes that can be used to identify partial units. Existing works that must be identified can be adequately tagged by marking arbitrarily defined data units. In the future it will be feasible and more efficient to embed tagging according to content-related criteria while the work is being generated. The efforts of the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC) to create an International Standard Work Code within the framework of a Common Information System (CIS) have already made great progress. The International Article Numbering Association (EAN) is sup­ porting the harmonization of the coding principles and procedures used in existing numbering schemes associated with commercial bar code systems. Electronic data interchange (EDI) standards have also been designed for forwarding data on the data superhighways. In the relationship between the supplier (copyright holder) and the user, electronic units that are identified as intellectual property may well become a commonplace commodity.

294 5.3


Specifying identification codes is one step toward achieving effec­ 1 SEE 1 tive definition of minimum units of terminological data, but any systematic approach also requires a framework for recognizing the Data boundaries of such units. ISO DIS 12620:1995, TerminologyCategories Computer Applications—Data Categories provides guidelines for Vol.11, 8.1.2 naming and defining the data elements used in TDBs. They may vary in size from a single character (e.g., a symbol) to a signifi­ cant chunk of text. Some of the data elements used in terminological databases arbitrary (e.g., terms) will never qualify as minimum IPR units. Some other minimum elements, for instance boilerplate (standard text) or even larger sec­ units tions of texts residing in associated text corpora, can be so long that they will have to be separated into arbitrarily defined mini­ mum units once developers have perfected the technical procedures for defining such units. From the standpoint of database manage­ ment, small data elements could conceivably be grouped together to form a single IPR unit, or individual data elements (contexts, standard texts, notes, etc.) could be divided into minimum units for more detailed identification for copyright purposes. Nevertheless, the definition of finer-grained units should in any case be limited to the content of a single data element. The arbitrary assignment of part of one data element and part of another adjacent data ele­ ment such that the boundaries of the IPR unit might straddle the data element boundaries would interfere with the primary function of data category identification within TDBs and impede efficient manipulation of data. Assuming that permanent watermarking may prove feasible, data one must nonetheless consider the extent to which such strategies interchange may have deleterious effects on the reusability of data, which is, and reuse after all, the primary goal of interchange and merging activities. The philosophy of the current exchange format assumes that all TDB operators can continue to use their existing systems without INFB 18:345 modification, provided that they write import and export routines Source to accommodate the interchange format. One of the realities of this Identifiers assumption is that many target systems do not provide slots for all information that is included in other, richer systems, particularly accommodation for all the source identifiers that may occur in a highly granular export document. These units will most likely be simply stripped off during the importation process and lost, most



probably without the possibility for later retrieval. Provided that a mechanism can be developed for preserving embedded source inf­ ormation, standardized documentation of bibliographic information is highly desirable. The use of short codes to identify sources in in­ dividual entries and linkage to independent bibliographical entries provides for data economy and facilitates efficient data main­ tenance, while documentation in conformance with ISO 12083: 1994, Information and documentation—Electronic manuscript preparation and mark-up ensures the general compatibility of bibliographic data. 5.4

Recommendations and Unresolved Questions

The new legal status established by the sui generis right protects the database itself as a selection or arrangement of data, provided it meets minimum criteria with regard to the degree of originality involved, but the holder is not entitled to derive a monopoly claim to the information contained in the database. More importantly perhaps, it also protects against unlawful extraction of all or any significant part of the content from a collection of otherwise noncopyrightable information. Nevertheless, this copyrightability of "non-works" contradicts the Berne convention without adequately explaining what precise criteria constitute the "originality" of a database. The directive could represent a step in the right direction for terminological data (and thesauri, etc.), but judicial precedents (case law) will have to be established over time before there will be any certainty in this regard. In the process of clarifying what constitutes the smallest copy­ rightable unit of terminological data, we have already pointed out that most individual data elements are not copyrightable and that the layout of the term entry itself is not permanently fixed in in­ terchange environments. Beyond the boundary of the individual data element, however, the linkage of data elements is of interest. Terms are linked to definitions, source citations, foreign language equivalents, and concept system positions within term entries. Elements within term entries and even entire term entries are linked to other term entries. Metainformation, such as subject field assignments (classification or the assignment of thesaurus des­ criptors) and validation data (reliability codes, etc.), is added to the entry. In this context, it is important to note that establishing these links can also constitute intellectual creation and effort. The


linkage and originality



identification of minimum units (including links) creates a pre­ condition whereby numerous, multifaceted claims to copyright could be made and administered with respect to one and the same entry or even one and the same data field. In fect, it is the links that hold together the individual components of the terminological entry that turn it into a compilation as discussed in the Introduction to this article, and these links may be the substance that provides the actual element of originality that characterizes these collections as copyrightable, even beyond the distorting effect of data con­ version and exchange. 6


Traditional mechanisms for obtaining payment for goods and ser­ vices, and specifically for information products, are based on the exchange of a tangible product for some form of monetary pay­ ment. We have seen how the dematerialization of intellectual pro­ perty in digital environments has complicated the remuneration equation and with it the enforcement of copyright protection. When initially established, the Internet operated on the principle that all information posted to public sites was free for the taking, but as the World Wide Web (WWW) becomes more and more commer­ cial, a distinction is being made between the free flow of information and the flow offreeinformation. Digital money (ecash or Cybergeld) and electronically "safe" credit cards promise solutions to the payment problem, and may overcome the reluctance of content providers to make their infor­ mation available for retrieval from the Internet. In a digital envi­ ronment where units of information are tagged and can be moni­ tored, it will be possible to establish collecting societies designed to serve as one-stop clearing houses for terminological information. Users of small chunks of data will be charged for the use of discrete bits of terminological information. The combination of sub-coding systems and the identification of IPR units discussed above will provide the tools for rapid, secure data interchange in an environment characterized by the collective management of authors' rights, where royalties derived from the right of use on data superhighways flow back to authors and copyright holders. Gervais notes that the ideal system should not be methodologically difficult, but it should not be technically

free flow of information

collecting societies



4.1 COPYRIGHT AND TERMINOLOGY simplistic either. He maintains that from his personal experience, managing rights for catalogs of works is not very difficult, pro­ vided they are properly encoded. He bases his argument on the analogy of music broadcasting, which has functioned efficiently for many years: Database operators will take on a function analogous to that of radio broadcasters with respect to mechanical reproduction, albeit in slightly modifiedform.They will provide distribution societies with the appropriate information and pay negotiated royalties (or legallyfixedtees), depending on the scope of use involved. The collecting societies will then pay society members and affiliate organizations for their share of the fees (Gervais 1995). 7


Having explored the significant questions surrounding copyright for terminological data and ways for remunerating the authors and holders of those data, we will now attempt to define who the true copyright holders actually are. Translators, technical writers and standardizers, as well as other documentation specialists, custom­ arily record the terminology used in their documents on an ad hoc basis during the course of their work. Terminologists also compile systematic terminologies, usually either under contract to clients or subject to the mandate of their activities on behalf of professional bodies. Let us for the moment disregard any question of rights to reused data, and examine the fundamental question of who owns the primary rights to terminological collections. 7.1

SEE Technical Translation 2.1.1:147

Salaried Employees

Under the law and contract practice of some countries, termino­ logy collections (as indeed, all products of labor) created by salar­ ied employees belong to an employer if compilers perform this service as part of their conditions of employment (called in American law works made for hire). Researchers developing pa­ tentable inventions in university or similar scientific institutes may also fall under this category so long as they use institutional facil­ ities even if work is done on their own time. Professors and re­ searchers in the humanities, however, do not usually need to worry about mis stipulation because their work rarely has enough com­ mercial value to be of interest, and universities have traditionally

works made for hire



shown less concern for published works than patented inventions. In the case of subcontractors, if contracting or authorizing parties, i.e., clients, have specifically defined the resulting body of data as part of the scope of work, these data probably become the property of the client. {Client is used here in the broadest sense of the term—a client can be a customer, an employer, a learned society, or even another department within the same company.) 7.2

Independent Contractors

The situation is not so clear-cut, however, for freelance translators and technical writers if the creation of terminology products is not specified as part of their scope of work. It has been argued in the translation community that the terminology compiled by translators remains their property in the same way that photographers retain the rights to their negatives, even though they may sell prints to a client. The sale of negatives is subject to additional costs, and the same practice is widely recommended for translators or technical writers who compile terminologies as a by-product of contracted document production. Although this contention may sound logical, it is nonetheless unsupported by either legislative or case law. In some jurisdictions, however, any work not specifically designated in writing as a work made for hire remains the property of the author, even if he or she sells a copy of it to a contracting party. Despite the position espoused in the previous paragraph, clients impose yet another restriction on consultants who may compile terminologies while carrying out translation or writing assign­ ments: confidentiality agreements can extend to any materials, notes, etc., created in the fulfillment of a job assignment, a stipula­ tion that would clearly cover terminology documentation as well. The principle of confidentiality is directly related to national and state trade secrets regulations. The primary consideration in such cases is that terminology collections may contain not just copy­ righted published text chunks, but potentially revealing, previously undisclosed contextual references as well. Even if this were not the case, just being able to identify the set of terms that a company is working with at any given time, on any given project, could con­ ceivably provide critical information to a competitor. Consequent­ ly, even if clients do not overtly make a claim to terminological information, compilers of terminologies are often contractually bound, or feel ethically obligated, to avoid transmitting that

scope of work

confidentiality trade secrets

4 1 COPYRIGHT AND TERMINOLOGY information to third parties, even if they retain control of their collections for their own use. Even given these considerations, however, the reuse or dissemination of some proprietary material is not necessarily out of the question. For instance, if contextual material is carefully chosen to avoid sensitive information, or if a critical subset loses its unique character by virtue of being merged into a greater body of terminological data (e.g., the outside consultant adds the items in question to his or her master database), it may be possible to obviate any claims to confidentiality made by an outside client. Problems arise when it becomes difficult to judge the degree to which information contained in a terminology resource is truly pro­ prietary as opposed to information derived from the common uni­ verse of discourse within a given technical field, in which case the camouflaging effect of embedding information within a larger, collaged data collection may be effective in preventing the disclo­ sure of company-specific information. At one extreme, data belong to originators or are subject to their confidentiality restrictions. At the other extreme, the information has become the creative pro­ perty of another party by virtue of manipulation and modification. The difficulty arises in determining at what point the data actually change status between the two extremes. 7.3


proprietary material

Broad-Scale Dissemination of Proprietary Terminology

Many clients generate terminologies in-house and provide them to outside consultants with the stipulation that additions and modifica­ tions to the vocabulary be returned with the finished product. In these cases, the rights to the material clearly remain with the client (who acts as the contracting party), but it is still highly likely that these materials will also find a permanent home in contractors' personal databases. Willingness to share proprietary terminology with a wider audi­ ence is another measure of shrewd tactics on the part of the owners of proprietary terminological data. For instance, the decision of Microsoft first to publicize its Windows™ terminology in the GUI Guide (1993) and then to make its in-house terminology available in downloadable form online via the Internet was one of the initial examples of a company that has determined that its best interests lie in sharing terminology. Other companies, such as Novell, have followed suit. In the case of Microsoft, this decision reflected an

in-home terminology

online availability



intentional normative objective with respect to the terminology used in the Windows environment. Furthermore, such decisions strengthen a company's knowledge management position in its field. The option of releasing information to the public without demanding payment is an example of changing business philosophy on the part of so-called third wave content providers on the In­ ternet. It represents a powerful example of the author's right to waive control of an intellectual product. 8


At the present time (and certainly in the foreseeable future), the intellectual property status of terminological data depends primarily on: • authors' rights and copyright (and to a certain extent industrial property rights as well) • laws protecting trade secrets • special regulations, such as those enforced by the new EU Di­ rective • and, insoiar as these general legal regulations do not apply, freely negotiated agreements based on contract law Clearcut copyright protection would constitute the strongest support for the intellectual property rights of terminology database holders, but we have already seen that these issues remain unre­ solved. In some respects, contract law constitutes the weakest legal standard for protecting the rights in general, but given the ambi­ guities that exist with respect to protection for terminological data, TDB owners participating in exchange environments are well ad­ vised to enter into contractual agreements in order to support good faith collaboration on the part of partners who might otherwise be unwilling to share their data. The Guide to Terminology Agreements, which has been developed over the last ten years by the International Information Centre for Terminology (Infoterm) in co­ operation with a number of national and international groups of terminology specialists, provides standard contractual clauses and a comprehensive check list covering the rights of the data supplier and the data user. The individual clauses of the Guide: 1. Define the partners to the contract (data owners and data users) and spell out the objectives of their collaboration.

protective mechanisms

contractual protection


4 1 COPYRIGHT AND TERMINOLOGY 2. Provide standard wording for the preamble to the contract. 3. List optional elements to be included in a detailed description of the tasks and the scope of the tasks covered by the contract. 4. Detail precise conditions affecting owner liability and rights under the contract. 5. Specify the type of data involved and the manner of exploit­ ation allowed under the contract. 6. Specify the rights of the data user. 7. Describe details regarding data products. 8. Specify conditions for remuneration under the conditions of the contract. 9. Define conditions of infringement. 10. Define conditions of free use. 11. Define liability. 12. State the terms and conditions of the contract. 13-18. Provide wording for contractual clauses including a confiden­ tiality statement, the scope of the contract, the relationship to national and international law, provisions for written form, a statement of venue, provisions for dealing with contract dis­ putes, and the closing statement. The basic agreement is supplemented by the Code of Good Practice, a glossary of terms related to copyright in terminology, and a full bibliography. Any parties entering into cooperative pro­ jects involving the sharing or publication of terminological data will be best protected by drawing up an agreement according to these guidelines. The Guide is available from Term Net as indicated below in the REFERENCES section.

301 clauses


Clark, Charles, (ed.). 1993. The publisher in the electronic world. A discussion document. Geneva: International Publishers Copyright Council (IPCC). Creifelds, Carl (ed.). 1981. Rechtswörterbuch. München: C.H. Beck'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung. EU (European Union). 1996. "Directive 96/9/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 1996 on the legal protection of databases." Official Journal of the European Communities, No. L 77/20 EN.



Galinski, Christian, and Jürgen W. Goebel. 1996. Guide to Terminology Agreements. Vien­ na: TermNet, International Network for Terminology, Simmeringer Hauptstraße 24, A1110 Vienna, Austria; FAX: 011-43-1-7440-740. Gervais, Daniel. 1995. "Urheberschutz am Datenhighway. Chancen und Gefahren der Digitalisierung—Teil II. [Author's Rights on the Data Highway. The Opportunities and Risks of Digitization—Part II]" Autorenzeitung. Nr. 3, 22-25. General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). 1994. Final Act Embodying the Results of the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations. Marakesh: GATT Secretariat. ISO 8402:1994. Quality management and Quality Assurance—Vocabulary. Geneva: ISO. ISO DIS 12620:1995. Terminology—Computer Applications—Data Categories. Geneva: ISO. ISO DIS 12200.2:1995. Terminology—Computer Applications—Machine-Readable Terminology Interchange Format (MARIIF). Geneva: ISO. ISO 12083:1994. Information and documentation—Electronic manuscript preparation and mark-up. Geneva: ISO. Lehman, Bruce A. 1995. "The Report of the Working Group on Intellectual Property Rights." Intellectual Property and the National Information Infrastructure. (IITF) Avail­ able as an ASCII file from http://www:iitf.doc.gov or as a PDF file from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office World-Wide Web site, http://www:uspto.gov. Note: References are to sections of this electronic document rather than to page numbers. Microsoft. 1993. The GUI-Guide: International Terminology for the Windows™ Interface, European Edition. Redmond, Washington, Microsoft Press. NASA. 1994. NASA Thesaurus. Springfield, Virginia: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Vogel, Martin. 1996a. "Ohne Schutz der Urheber keine Datenautobahn. Multimediale Werke als neue Werkart? Schranken des Verwertungsrechts gesetzlich festlegen. [No Data Highway without Authors' Rights. Multimedia Works as a New Genre? Setting Legal Limits to the Right to Exploitation]" Urheberrecht und Digitaltechnik (2). Blick durch die Wirtschaft. 1996-04-04. Vogel, Martin. 1996b. "Elektronischer Pressespiegel und Wissensdatenbank. Wieviel Mitsprache der Autoren bei Datenmanipulation? [Electronic Press and Knowledge Banks. What are the Limits to the Author's Role with Respect to Data Manipulation?]" Urheberrecht und Digitaltechnik (3). Blick durch die Wirtschaft. 1996-04-10.

5 Terminology Training

Section 5.1 Aspects of Terminology Training HERIBERT PICHT AND CARMEN ACUNA PARTAL 1


This article is designed to describe the environments where terminology training is currently conducted and to provide guide­ lines for syllabus and curriculum planning in a variety of situa­ tions. Terminology training is carried out today in academic and nonacademic settings by both university professors and practicing professionals. The following discussion examines these different levels of activity, underscoring similar approaches and proposing variations designed to meet the specific needs of the various target groups involved. 1.1 Academic Settings This section is subdivided according to the following criteria: • terminology as a compulsory component integrated in other studies • terminology as an optional component within other studies to acquire an additional professional profile • terminology courses as post-graduate training 1.1.1


academic training

Terminology as a Compulsory Training Component

If we make a distinction between multilingual and monolingual training, we can differentiate between special language translators and other language mediators on the one hand and technical writers and professionals without a background in languages (lawyers, surgeons, etc.) on the other. Since the early 1980s, the number of institutions that train translators for special language applications and that have a fully integrated terminological component in their curriculum has in­ creased. As a general rule, terminology is taught during the first few semesters of a comprehensive translation program and is con­ sidered an indispensable "tool" for the students' future professional activity. Such courses are primarily practice-oriented and are

compulsory component


Terminology Databases Vol.II,8.1.1



increasingly assisted by electronic support for terminography (ter­ minology database management programs). The duration of the terminological component varies depending on the institution and ranges from 15 to 50 contact hours, i.e., classroom hours. The breadth of this range reflects the nature of the courses: some are only introductory, while others include important theoretical components and practical exercises. In contrast to growing requirements in translation training, few institutions to date have an integrated compulsory terminological component in training programs for technical writers and subject field specialists. Often, terminology is taught as a part of another subject. However, there are subject fields that teach both their terminology and the word formation rules governing their nomen­ clature. 1.1.2 Terminology as an Optional Component Although the aim and duration of optional terminology courses is similar to compulsory ones, the following differences must be noted: • As terminology is an optional subject, the motivation of stu­ dents attending these courses tends to be higher, which in many cases permits deeper theoretical insights. • The interest of students often leads to the elaboration of ter­ minological theses, which permit them to gain experience in order to eventually carry out terminological projects. • More in-depth study of terminology provides students with an additional professional skill, i.e., that of the terminologist or terminographer, which other students lack. However, all these differences do not mean that the training courses mentioned in 1.1 cannot lead to the same goal. 1.1.3

subject field specialists

optional component

Terminology as Post-Graduate Training

At present, a great variety of courses and target groups are post-graduate included in this category: training Practicing Translators. Frequently 1 to 5 day courses are translators offered for professional translators. Depending on their duration, these courses are generally informative and orientational in nature and are designed to take advantage of the knowledge of termi­ nology that practicing translators have acquired from daily work. Although these courses are primarily practice-oriented, they also



treat the theoretical foundations of terminology if there is enough time. Teachers of Special Languages. Courses for this group are similar to those described in the previous section, especially with regard to content and duration. The distinguishing element here is the didactic component, which involves discussing how to integrate terminology into the daily teaching of translation, with the goal of raising a certain consciousness in students of the importance of terminology in the translation process. Terminology Consultants. This kind of course aims to offer experienced special language translators additional specialized training to equip them to act as consultants for staff with a background in special languages in small and middle-sized enter­ prises. The courses focus on terminology-related questions such as the elaboration of in-house terminologies and their storage, the selection of commercially available terminology software suited to their specific needs, the integration of these programs into general company communication structures, etc. Terminology Teachers. This target group has an extremely heterogeneous background. On the whole, most participants have a background in languages, often in teaching special languages, or a dual professional background. The duration of courses for this target group ranges from 3-4 days to a fortnight, depending on the previous terminological and didactic knowledge of participants. They should acquire a deep knowledge of the theory of termi­ nology and its different approaches, gain some experience in terminography (application of terminological methods) and acquire didactic knowledge about the subject. These courses are very similar to courses for researchers, as many terminology teachers also carry out research work. Courses for Researchers. Courses for this target group generally last a fortnight and are held at residential conference centers. The participants are young researchers from different backgrounds who wish to deepen their knowledge in terminology. Courses feature lectures by outstanding lecturers, discussions, group work, projects, etc. These "scientific fora" have the fol­ lowing objectives: • To exchange experiences, theoretical and applied knowledge

special language teachers

terminology consultants

terminology teachers

terminology researchers



To establish inter- and transdisciplinary contacts with a view to research work • To promote and support new generations of researchers Experience has shown that many teachers of terminology are recruited from this group. 1.2

Nonacademic Settings

Terminology courses frequently take place in extra-academic sett­ ings. Course content and duration are directly related to the spe­ cific purpose of the course and the target group involved. The audience for short practice-oriented introductory courses include: •

Practicing professional translators who, like those cited in 2.1.3, have acquired basic knowledge of the principles of ter­ minology as a complement to their empirical knowledge

Term-bank staff, for whom strong practice-oriented courses are designed, although the fundamentals of terminology may also be treated as well Information and documentation (I&D) personnel, who are familiarized with the similarities between I&D and terminology with respect to conceptual relations and terms (The objective of these programs is to instill a consciousness of the influence of terminology on the flow of information and information management.)

Standardizers and language planners Often the terminology courses offered to these target groups are promoted by institutions, organizations and enterprises and are held as in-house training seminars. Most short practiceoriented introductory terminology courses last 2 days and in­ clude highly condensed information about the principles of ter­ minology and hardly any practical exercises. Naturally, courses designed to meet the needs of very specific target groups focus on the information relevant for the execution of relevant tasks. Thorough introductions are offered for the same target groups, often with a duration of 4-6 days, which permits greater didac­ tic and methodological variation. Such courses aim at providing participants with a broad based knowledge of the theory and practice of terminology; approximately half of the time is devoted to practical exercises.

nonacademic settings practicing translators term-bank staff I&D personnel

standardizers language planners




Because of the very different objectives and target groups in­ volved, we have defined ten (1-10) basic information components that occur in most known courses of a certain duration (Section 2.1) and ten (11-20) that are included in only some of them, depending on their specific goals (Section 2.2). Finally, we shall proceed to describe some standard syllabi for different kinds of training courses (Section 2.3). 2.1

Compulsory Elements

Virtually all terminology training courses, except for short intro­ ductory seminars, treat the following topics as part of the standard curriculum. The individual components are numbered here and will be cross-referenced in the discussion of model syllabi that follows in Section 2.3. CD

training components

model components


The content of introductory components may be extremely diverse, depending on the specialized background of the participants, their current information level and their expectations. 2

Aims and objectives of terminology

Such components include the following topics: • improvement of the quality and reliability of communication within the special field • knowledge transfer • linguistic and subject-field-specific knowledge • terminology and specialized translation 3


Disciplines that contribute to terminology

This aspect addresses the inter- and transdisciplinary character of terminology. 4

Basic concepts in terminology

This topic includes initial definitions of concept and term, other forms of concept representation, the relation between the concept and the term represented in various models.

basic concepts

310 5


The following headings comprise the content of this topic: • basic definitions and explanations • the intention and extension of a concept • characteristics, types and their use • concept representations • verbal representations: definitions and explanations • non-verbal representations: illustrations, formulae, pictograms, etc. • relations among concepts • concept systems • types, construction, applications • concept fields 6

Terms and other forms used to represent concepts

Apart from a general introduction to semiotic theory, this topic focuses on the term. The following subcategories are particularly important: • term formation, requirements and types • neology • relations between concept and term • synonymy • polysemy • homonymy • equivalence • term systems 7

object concept

concept representation


This heading frequently involves the following topics: • the relationship between lexicography and terminology • lexicographical and terminographical products • traditional terminographical management and methods • computer-aided terminographical management and methods • terminology databases (TDBs) and data banks • introduction to historical aspects • term banks and knowledge banks • data elements, data fields, formats, records • interrelations




classifications for TDBs and term banks interchange of terminological data; networking


The process of terminology management

This point covers four topic areas: • description of the various terminographical approaches • terminographical methodologies • project planning • the fundamentals of project management and execution 9

Terminology and Information and Documentation (I&D)

This heading includes classification and thesaurus creation. These I&D tools reflect both the terminologies of individual subject fields and the systematized methods employed in their creation. This component also emphasizes the use of I&D tools in terminology management. Terminology documentation is currently gaining popularity as a separate sub-topic. 10

information and documentation

Terminology and standardization

This area has traditionally enjoyed a permanent place on virtually all curricula, although with varying emphasis. The following points appear to be part of the basic inventory. • basic definitions • institutional framework • possibilities and limits of standardization • working process and working methods 2.2

working methods


Optional Elements

Besides the central thematic areas listed above, a number of other topics can be listed, which again are connected with such factors as duration, target group and special objectives of the study. DP

History of terminology

The principal milestones in the history of terminology are often dealt with chronologically. Work achieved in different countries and institutions such as International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), the International Standards Association (ISA) and later the




International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is treated, as are leading authors in the field and their works. Often, a portion of the historical development of the study and teaching of special languages is dealt with concurrently, since it can be impossible to separate the two satisfactorily. 12

"Schools " of terminology

This topic is frequently treated in courses for young researchers, with emphasis on such questions such as: What is a school? and what are the conditions that make it possible to speak of "schools of terminology"? Different approaches are compared and con­ trasted. 14

Terminology and knowledge engineering

Research-oriented studies also treat this topic, usually in the form of a short briefing offered in the course of more extensive intro­ ductions. Important aspects include areas of contact and overlap with terminology and the possibilities and limits of co-operation, so far as these can be reliably identified or realized today. 14

SEE Knowledgebased Systems Vol.II, 8.4.5

Terminology and corpora

This topic is still only rarely included in curricula. Where present, the potential of corpora as a latent source of terminological raw material is discussed (terms, definitions, special language phrases, etc.). Discussion treats tools, methods, and sometimes their limitations. 15


SEE Text Corpora Vol. II, 8.4.1

Terminology planning

In countries where a high level of linguistic awareness prevails, extending to concerns about technical and other specialized languages, and in developing countries, this topic has special rel­ evance, particularly in light of the close connection between ter­ minology and knowledge transfer. Over and above development activity at national levels, terminology planning is also advancing by leaps and bounds in private enterprise and for individual special fields; consider, for example, the development of Norwegian pe­ troleum terminology, which kept pace with the evolution of the national oil industry.

SEE Language Policy 3.1:245, 3.2:261


Terminology and special language text production

This component occurs in virtually all special language translation courses. Critical points include the close relationship between multilingual terminologies and their applications in translation, as well as those practice-related terminological working methods that are relevant to technical translators, together with the possibilities and applications which terminology management software has to offer the translator. Moreover, there is increasing emphasis on the integration of programs of this kind into more complex systems (machine-aided translation, machine translation, and translation memory). For monolingual text production, better known as technical writing, terminology is gaining ever-increasing importance, as is witnessed by the inclusion of terminological components in certain curricula. 17

SEE Technical Translation 2.1.1:147

Terminology, professional communication, special languages, and knowledge transfer

This complex component treats the description of the com­ munication process in enterprises, institutions, etc., and seeks to demonstrate the multifaceted role of terminology, e.g., in monoand multilingual communication, information management, knowledge transfer and the storage of knowledge in terminological databases and term banks. This component also appears on its own in cases where decision makers are encouraged to give terminology serious consideration in company and institutional communication structures. Some approaches occasionally touch on the limitations of special languages as a medium of communication and refer to types of non-verbal communication that are closely linked with terminology and have for a number of years had their place in terminography. 18



knowledge transfer

International cooperation

This topic focuses on existing networks and their relationships, with in-depth coverage of national, regional, and international insti­ tutions involved in terminology coordination. The inter- and transdisciplinary nature of terminology makes it eminently suitable for the cooperative interaction of various types of network partners.

international networks



The amount of attention afforded this point varies considerably, depending largely upon the target group and the subsequent activity of its members. 19

Terminology teaching and training

This component is primarily required in courses of more than one week's duration and acquaints special language and translation teachers with the various methods and materials used in termino­ logy teaching, and with the possibility of incorporating the ter­ minological component into the translation curriculum. In courses of longer duration, there will also be some discussion of the qua­ lities which should be required of a terminology teacher. 20

Special language phraseology and terminology

This topic is included in courses for specialized translators and technical writers. As special language phraseology is a relatively young discipline, presentation focuses on current approaches to the subject. This point has a research orientation, whereas the repre­ sentation of special language phrases in terminographical products and term banks is practically oriented. Furthermore, discussion also includes the relationship of special language phraseology with other disciplines such as knowledge formulation and knowledge transfer, expert systems, machine translation, and special language research. 2.3

terminology teaching

special language phraseology

Model Syllabi

Based on this brief component description, we will now propose some model syllabi for terminology training courses and com­ ponents for different target groups. Of course, no attempt will be made to prescribe the number of hours dedicated to each com­ ponent, as this will depend on the time available and on the previ­ ous knowledge of the participants. As noted above, the component numbers referenced here correspond to the item numbers used in the previous section. 2.3.1 Courses/Components for Technical Translators and Translation Students Courses for this target audience should include components 1-10, as well as optional components 16 and 20. Component 17 could be introduced in conjunction with components 1 and 2 or at the end

technical translation



of the course. Depending on available time, component 18 exposes participants to the scope of terminology activities and is indispens­ able for terminologists who may work with international organ­ izations in the future. 2.3.2

Courses for Terminology Planners

Often, those working in planning bodies have a background in languages and language planning, but not in specialized and techni­ cal languages, which means that although they are familiar with some part of the content of the components, it is convenient to include an introduction to the nature of special languages. Such a program could include components 1-3 and 5-10, with primary emphasis on term formation, on rules and conventions in the language in question, and on the peculiarities of the specific field of knowledge involved. Terminography should be discussed with a focus on methods for storing and publishing the results obtained during the working process. Of course, component 15 can be in­ cluded if participants need further introduction to the topic.

language planning

2.3.3 Courses for Standardizes This kind of course is addressed to institutionalized standardizing bodies operating at national, regional and/or international levels and to those working on the regulation or standardization of ter­ minologies in companies or governmental bodies. Here component 1 can be combined with component 2 with emphasis on the rela­ tion of terminology and standardization. Components 5-7 and 10 should be included, with the main focus on the systematic repre­ sentation of terminological units. Experience has shown that a onehalf to one day intensive course will yield a qualitative and quanti­ tative improvement in the results of the work carried out by stan­ dardization committees. 2.3.4


Courses for Term-Bank Staff

Often, this type of course is held by an institution interested in establishing a new terminological data bank or in updating its collaborators' knowledge of terminology. Emphasis on theoretical aspects will depend on the participants' previous knowledge of the terminology field. The theoretical foundations and basic principles of terminology are essential as these are present in all steps of the terminographical work. In some cases, it can also be necessary to offer a good introduction to the terminology software used by the

term-bank operation



bank. Depending on the objectives of the course and the previous knowledge of participants, the introduction can also include com­ ponents 2 and 3. Components 4-9 should be treated, with the pri­ mary focus of the course being on terminography, as well as optional components 14 and 20. 2.3.5

Courses for Information and Documentation (l&D) Personnel

In light of the close relation between terminology and I&D, some part of the introduction should compare concepts which are similar or common to both disciplines. The course should feature items 13, 4 (with a focus on the relations between concepts and systems of concepts), 5 (with a focus on the selection of preferred terms for inclusion in classification systems and thesauri), 6 (including a general introduction emphasizing aspects relevant to the elaboration of classification systems, indexes, and thesauri, and 7, again focus­ ing on those aspects that are relevant to specific tasks performed by I&D personnel.

information and documentation

2.3.6 Courses for Terminology Teachers The training of terminology teachers must include, in principle, all the components described in sections 2.1 and 2.2. Future terminol­ ogy teachers must also be capable of directing a project intended as the final project in a course of study in terminology, e.g., a diploma thesis. Terminology teaching and training deserves special attention. Course designers must devote ample time to this topic, stressing both the need for different forms of training and the fact that teach­ ing material must be available in the different languages.

terminology teaching

2.3.7 Courses for Terminology Researchers It does not seem to be realistic to propose a syllabus for such courses as these go beyond training in the narrow sense. In this case, course designers must resort to the literature describing terminology courses for this target group. The selected bib­ liography in Volume II of this Handbook contains valuable mater­ ials useful for structuring such a syllabus. In the previous sections we have tried to put forward some model syllabi for the terminology training courses most frequently offered to different target groups. Nevertheless, course designers must decide which components should be included in order to

terminology research



achieve a specific goal and the number of hours to be devoted to each topic. 3


As we have already pointed out above, course duration and special objectives determine the amount of possible didactic variation. Most short practice-oriented introductory courses include highly condensed information—for which the lecture is the preferred form of instruction—and hardly any practical exercises. On the other hand, thorough introductions and longer courses provide ample opportunity for greater didactic and methodological variation and devote approximately 30%-50% of the time to practical exercises. On the whole, the following methods have proved to be fruitful: Lectures are used for presenting most of the theoretical compo­ nents. Practical exercises are for the most part connected with lectures and aim at confronting participants in terminology courses with the various problems they may encounter in terminology practice, and allowing them to work out their own solutions, or at least to recog­ nize such problems in case there is insufficient time to treat them in detail. Typical exercises relate to such topics as the formulation and evaluation of definitions, the construction of concept systems based on given data, the evaluation of terms, suggestions for the improvement of terms, the recognition of special language phraseo­ logies, and the development of formats for terminological data­ bases and term banks, etc. Projects may range from simple project designs to the elabo­ ration of practical terminographical projects involving severe thematic restrictions using existing documentation material. The emphasis during training is, again, on the recognition and solution of problems, rather than on the complete elaboration of a terminol­ ogy, which would be more the concern of a terminological thesis. Terminological role-playing involves the simulation of a discus­ sion between an expert and a terminologist concerning the estab­ lishment of a system of concepts. This method has been used suc­ cessfully in some courses. It demands thorough preparation and a co-operative and capable partner. It is possible to videotape roleplaying sessions for incorporation into curricula.

didactic methods

lectures exercises





Demonstrations are used to introduce computer-aided terminol­ demonstrations ogy management and methodologies to participants and to familiar­ ize them with various different kinds of terminology databases and terminology database software, their possibilities and limitations, the growing availability of terminologies in CD-ROM form, etc. Internet-awareness and worldwide web familiarity can be intro­ duced with demonstrations, followed up by practical exercises involving student research related to terminology projects. Computer-aided instruction (CA1) programs are already avail­ CA1 able that offer the potential for interesting new terminology training options. Computer Assisted Translation, in particular terminology database management programs, offer students the ideal working environment for putting theoretical principles intopractice. It is not so important that they learn the program that they will need when the go into the marketplace, because it is impossible to predict what they will be using in the future. The important thing is that they master the principles of data modelling and that they become familiar with a good program that will give them the ability to learn other programs quickly. Internet skills and Internet research have become an integral part of many training programs. Terminological "map-maneuver" exercises have produced good map-maneuver results in courses for terminology consultants. This method in­ volves the simulation of a real-life situation in which the partici­ pants receive a situational starting point, which is modified and ex­ panded several times so as to familiarize them with a number of consultation situations, and with possible strategies they can imple­ ment in order to find solutions for the typical problems encoun­ tered. The solutions found by the participants form the basis of further discussions. Terminological theses are often submitted by candidates for a terminological degree in studies which have an integrated terminological compo­ theses nent. Students are guided through the different steps of the elabor­ ation of such theses which, for the most part, have a strong practi­ cal bias, i.e., aim at the elaboration of the terminology—and the system of concepts—related to a narrowly restricted topic. In addition, there are dissertations of a purely theoretical nature, which more closely correspond to the Ph.D. level.




This section introduces the different kinds of teaching materials teaching available for terminology training, and of the problems which arise material in connection with them, especially those deriving from the lan­ guages in which they are written. The terminological teaching ma­ terials available at present can be classified as follows: No textbook exists in the strictest sense of the word, i.e., no textbooks book exists that includes pedagogical aids, exercises, etc. A num­ ber of manuals and other introductory works are in use as text­ books, however. Many trainers feel that there is a need in the fu­ ture for such strictly didactic texts, but it remains a challenge to create such materials so as to meet the varying needs of different linguistic, subject-area, and professional groups. Manuals provide an insight into the theoretical and practical | SEE j aspects of terminology and thus lend themselves for use as text­ books. Some introductory works are based on lecture series. These Appendix I materials are generally either theoretically or practically oriented, Terminology and are more or less accessible through ordinary channels. Others Manuals:349 are just compilations of lectures and exercises without any sys­ tematic editing or adaptation. These items are intended as memo­ randa for the participants in the courses, i.e., grey literature or limited editions for internal use. Consequently, they are very dif­ ficult to access. Theoretical treatises and articles, the former in the original or theoretical in adapted form, are important sources of material for courses treatises aimed at different target groups and especially for researchers. Articles can serve the purpose of providing an overview of differ­ ent aspects of terminology, as well as information about subjects as yet unavailable in the manuals. Course material in the form of unpublished teaching material terminology prepared by terminology teachers, e.g., photocopies, transpar­ teaching encies, hand-outs, etc., intended for the participants in one specific course or program. These items are difficult to understand without the teacher's comments and are not intended to be passed on to a wider circle. Important problems arise in connection with the unequal distribution of languages in which teaching materials are written. In addition, it must be noted that the language the materials are dissemination written in has a crucial effect on the dissemination and potential usefulness of such materials. Furthermore, language is a critical



factor in the selection of teaching material, as there is a clear correspondence between the terminological approach and the language of the country in which the publications appear. Important works have been or are currently being translated to make up for the dearth of material in some languages, a fact which can support the dissemination of terminological knowledge regard­ less of the approach they may represent. New works are also appearing in a variety of languages. A similar factor is that some works utilize English as a vehicle because of its wide distribution, although the content and approach reflected in these works did not originate in the English-speaking world. Apart from the problems mentioned above, the selection of teaching materials is frequently extremely problematic because par­ ticipants in terminology courses very frequently possess very dif­ ferent levels of background knowledge. 5

materials in translation


Teachers of terminology may be classified either chronologically or by their professional background. First, the chronological classification: The first generation of terminology teachers was comprised of self-taught people who adapted terminology theory for teaching purposes. They formed a small nucleus, one of whose chief tasks was to train more teachers. Succeeding generations have been able to benefit from these earlier efforts; often they received some kind of terminology train­ ing and then expanded existing training programs to meet new needs. Despite this favorable development, there is still a clear need for more terminology teachers. In some countries that have evolved a tradition of teaching terminology, the existing pool of teachers just about meets current needs. In some other nations, there may be a great need to recruit and train additional teachers, especially in situations where terminology has been made a com­ pulsory discipline in the official curriculum for translators, but no tradition for teaching terminology exists. Terminology teachers can be divided into three groups ac­ cording to their professional background: • Those with a background in languages, usually special lan­ guages, who incorporate terminology into special language

historical classification



translation courses; their approach has a predominately linguis­ tic slant. Specialists whose training is not in languages, but who have re­ cognized the need for terminology training and are passing on their knowledge to other specialists, e.g., via short courses for standardization commissions. Those with a combination of linguistic and non-linguistic qua­ lifications, e.g., languages and another field such as law, infor­ mation science, technical subjects, etc. The advantages of this category as terminology teachers should be obvious.

321 professional classification


A state-of-the-art account of current conditions in terminology training cannot provide more than a mere abstraction or gener­ alization of the teaching reality. It can only offer general guidance to terminology course designers. The evolution of terminology training as a professional endeavor is clearly undergoing a shift as the methodologies of the terminologist/terminographer merge with those of the information specialist. The challenges of the Internet and World Wide Web environment and the rich options that are offered there for terminology research are revolutionizing the dayto-day activities of the practicing terminologist as well as the approaches taken by the terminology trainer. The Selected Biblio­ graphy at the end of Volume II of this Handbook will include further references that will permit deeper insights into further specific questions pertinent to the teaching and training of termi­ nology.

future trends

Information Boxes



INFOBOX No. 1 Terminology Collections Terminologists, maybe even more so than other subject-field specialists, have problems agreeing on the terminology that they use within their own discipline. The authors of this book consider a terminology to be a structured set of concepts and their representation in a specific subject field. The following terms and their underlying concepts are frequently cited in contrast to terminologies or as near synonyms. A vocabulary can also be a list of words used in a language or a particular book or branch of science, etc., or by a particular author. The vocabulary of a field is a broader concept, one that cannot generally be construed as limited to a single collection or list. Although vocabulary would appear to be synonymous with terminology, the semantic scope of vocabulary is broader in that terminology tends to be used with reference to serious disciplines (i.e., engineering, law, art, etc.), whereas vocabulary can be used to cover not only domain-specific words, but general language words as well. For this reason (among others), many native speakers of English dislike the fect that the indexing and title term used for terminology standards (see below) in the International Organization for Standardization is vocabulary {Example: ISO 472: Plastics — Vocabulary). The designation terminology standard, meaning a document composed of terms, definitions, and related terminological information that has been approved by an authoritative body, is a much less ambiguous term to use for such documents than is the ISO term vocabulary. The term glossary can be defined as an alphabetical list of terms or words found in or relating to a specific topic or text. It may or may not include explanations. The distinguishing criterion is that they are considered to reside in backmatter attached to books and other publications rather than being independent works in their own right. Glossaries are sometimes perceived as being less scientific in intent and methodology than terminologies, terminology standards, and even vocabularies, although a certain degree of synonymy exists. In multilingual terminology management, the root mean­ ing of the term (i.e., an explanatory word inserted in the margin or between the lines of a text) has led to the wide-spread perception that glossary refers to a multilingual vocabulary collection that features parallel columns of words without explanations or definitions. Those people who hold this view speak of "glossary-type word lists" and consider this style of presentation to be quite antithetical to effective terminology



management. Despite all these various views, many so-called glossaries are never­ theless well-conceived and contain excellent definitions. The distinguishing features of a dictionary are that it is generally construed to be a book that lists and defines the words in a language. Consequently, non-book-length collections are not dictionaries. In English, the term lexicon can designate the vocabulary of a person, language, or domain. Again in English, a lexicon can also be a high-register word for a dictionary. In international environments, however, the word is not widely accepted as a synonym for these terms because in other languages it has come to mean a work containing broader encyclopedic knowledge. Some less careful writers use the word nomenclature as if it were interchangeable with terminology or vocabulary, but this is misleading. It is more specifically an authoritative system of terms that are established and developed according to naming rules and practices in a specified field. Although most special collections are systematic to a degree, the critical aspect of a nomenclature is that it follows strict systematic naming rules. Hence, nomenclatures are more rigorous than other terminologies and vocabularies. The ordering principle most frequently utilized in terminological collections is the familiar alphabetical arrangement. Alphabetical arrangement may be continuous (letter-by-letter) or discontinuous (word by word). Although some variations among Latin-character languages require the invocation of special rules, this format is readily familiar from standard dictionary usage in general language. Systematic arrangement positions entries according to the location that the terms assume in a concept system. In this context, the "opposite" of systematic is not unsystematic (with its pejorative connotations), but rather alphabetical, which is simply a different approach and not to be construed as pejorative. When mixed arrangement is used, a collection is divided into sections according to systematic principles and the individual sections are arranged alphabetically. The advantage of systematic arrangement is that information is presented in a logical and coherent fashion, enabling the user to gain a much more comprehensive view of a subject field than is afforded by alphabetical listings. The advantage cited by proponents of the alphabetical approach is that information is more readily retrievable, since systematic resources usually require the use of cross-reference lists. Alphabetical systems are term-oriented, whereas systematic ones are concept-oriented. Computer management of terminological data can render this conflict irrelevant because users can easily utilize the advantages of both approaches simultaneously within the same system.



INFOBOX No. 2 Terminology Activities The Introduction to this book defines its scope in terms of terminology management, i.e., any deliberate manipulation of terminological information. As such the term has a very broad application encompassing all other terms used to designate terminology activities. It's scope is analogous to the that of information management and quality management. Terminology processing, on the other hand, which has also been used in conjunction with terminology collection to designate a wide number of activities, has a narrower scope by virtue of analogy to data processing, which implies restriction to computer-supported tasks. Terminology work, although a legitimate multiword term in English, is not widely used in this book. It has been defined in ISO 1087 as "any activity concerned with the systematization and representation of concepts or with the presentation of terminologies on the basis of established principles and methods". Native speakers of English reject it as a broad term because the terminological element "work" implies a much narrower focus than that intended by the definition, which would include theoretical activities. A good example of the scope of this term is its legitimate use by Neff: . . . there has been a major shift in the translation centers from the use of inhouse translators to a system of vendoring out translation work, while terminology work remains in-house. (Neff, Vol. II, 7.2.3) Derived from the French terminographie, terminography is construed as having a relation to terminology that is analogous to that between lexicography and lexicology. Terminography is the recording, processing, and presentation of terminological data acquired by terminological research. The term is not widely known to many English-speaking terminologists. Its use is growing, although some reject it as a false borrowing. In general or didactic texts where it may be perceived as foreign or misspelled, it should be clearly defined when first used. The term terminology science is used by some authors to designate the scholarly study of the concepts and terms found in special languages, but there is strong resistance in English to humanities-related compounds using the wordscience, which is widely construed in English to be limited to the so-called hard sciences. (One speaks of "science and the humanities", or "arts and sciences".) Consequently, the term terminology studies, analogous to the widely accepted translation studies, is a more natural formulation in English.



INFOBOX No. 3 Lexicography vs. Terminology Modern scholarship, spurred by the growing power and sophistication of comput­ erized language processing systems, views the boundaries between lexicography and terminology as increasingly fluid. Bearing in mind that all dichotomous over­ simplifications can be deceiving, the following comparative features can nevertheless clarify understanding for newcomers to terminology studies. LEXICAL ENTRY


Treats a word (frequently called a headword)

Treats a concept and is sometimes identified by a code rather than a word

Treats multiple polysemic senses of the word based on one etymo­ logical derivation

Treats one concept in one entry, and documents all terms assigned to that concept

Treats homographic words with different derivations in separate entries

Treats polysemie meanings of the same word in separate entries

Provides all grammatical infor­ mation pertaining to the word

Cites only those grammatical differences that may be related to term-concept assignment

Is arranged in strict alphabetical order for easy access

Often is arranged according to a systematic concept structure, with alphabetical cross-listing

Describes, or at most, recom­ mends usage

Frequently documents preferred or recommended usage

Usually treats words as a universal set taken from general language

Treats terms belonging to a do­ main-specific special language

Includes a full set of parts of speech (word classes)

Is comprised mainly of nouns, verbs, and sometimes adjectives



INFOBOX No. 4 Descriptive and Prescriptive Terminology Management Descriptive Terminology Management is practiced by translators, technical writers, and social scientists who document terminology for translation and writing, but generally do not themselves determine usage in a domain. Descriptive terminology management can be practiced even for translations and critical texts in literature and belles lettres by recording solutions to specific translation or usage problems, as well as even polysemic nuances. This approach helps translators and writers make in­ formed choices, but it in no way dictates their choices. Even standardizes may perform descriptive work as they collect information on usage and multiple definitions prior to preparing standardized definitions. Prescriptive Terminology Management is practiced by standardizers, government regulators, nomenclature specialists, and language planners. These persons either are experts themselves or work closely with experts in their fields. In science and technology, as well as in the law, precision in language is an essential factor. Prenegotiated meaning in the form of standardized terminology ensures that standardizes will understand each other when they agree to technical specifications and that stan­ dards will be implemented appropriately. Standardized terminology ensures that legal regulations can be enforced according to the "letter of the law". Adherence to the sense of specified terms in technical and legal contexts is designed to guard public health and safety, provide liability protection, and even guarantee human rights under the law. Chemical nomenclatures provide systems for naming compounds, and biological classification systems provide a framework for assigning designations to living organisms. These conventions are designed to eliminate proliferation of conflicting names and to enable scientists to understand and benefit from each other's work. Language planners in linguistic communities that do not have a technical tradition endeavor to generate consistent terminology in their languages for a broad range of fields in order to facilitate technology transfer. This activity is both vital and effective in developing countries. Language planning to maintain language purity frequently meets with resistance when it extends to the area of general language. Translators and other non-experts may also practice prescriptive terminology within their working groups when they specify in-house usage.



INFOBOX No. 5 Special Languages

Linguists and terminologists commonly designate lexical subsystems intended for unambiguous communication in a particular subject field as speciallanguages. In Europe, languages for special purposes (LSP), is widely used as a synonym for special languages, yet LSP has a related, but narrower, meaning in North America, where it is limited to the second language teaching of domain-specific terminologies, e.g., the teaching of German, French, etc., scientific or commercial languages to non-native speakers. Technical language (technolect) to many English-speaking translators and technical communicators is synonymous with any special language, but this view includes the special languages of "non-technical" subjects such as law or art, which causes confusion for anyone who has a narrower understanding of the word technical that is limited exclusively to the hard sciences and engineering. Consequently, special language emerges as the least ambiguous term for the broadest international audience. The variants specialized language and specialist language also occur.

INFOBOX No. 6 Headwords

The term headword appears in this book with two different meanings. In lexico­ graphy, a headword is the word used as the heading in a dictionary entry or encyclopedia. In a descriptive terminology entry where no preference is given to any one term, there is no head term, but if preference is given to a term, head term is sometimes used in analogy to lexicography, as is main entry term. A headword can also be the basic element in a compound term or terminological phrase to which determiners are added. In English, the headword in a multiword term is most frequently the last word in the term. Although some of the authors in this book call the determined word in a multiword term the headword, others avoid the ambiguity inherent in the word by using nucleus instead.



INFOBOX No. 7 Part of Speech (Word Class)

Common usage in both American and British English employs the term part of speech to designate the categories to which words are assigned in accordance with their grammatical and semantic functions. The most common instances of parts of speech in European languages are nouns, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, verbs, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections. Linguists use the term word class on the grounds that parts of speech in the classical sense derive from traditional Latin grammar and do not provide adequate classification options for English. Word class has not, however, caught on as an accepted term outside the field of linguistics and is even perceived by many non-linguist subject-field specialists to be an awkward borrowing or linguistic jargon. Lexicographers and teachers of grammar also continue to use part of speech. Furthermore, many readers will immediately assume that word classes refers to some other way of classifying words, for instance the classification of words for the purpose of machine translation or other kinds of natural language processing. In light of these factors, although texts written for linguists may use the term word class, target audiences that include technical writers, translators, subject specialists, and students in these domains are better served by part of speech. Nevertheless, word class can be used in general texts if it is carefully explained when first introduced. Word category occurs as well but is also easily misunderstood or may be rejected by many native speakers of English.



INFOBOX No. 8 Abbreviated Forms of Terms Abbreviated forms of terms compensate for excessive length that makes a term difficult to use. The original long form of the term is called a full form or an expanded form (expansion). Several types of abbreviated forms can be distinguished: •

Short forms A shortened form of an extremely long complex term can be introduced that uses fewer words, but does not involve abbreviation or initialization. Example: Full form: Intergovernmental Group of Twenty-four on International Monetary Affairs Short form: Group of Twenty-four

• Abbreviations Abbreviations proper are created by omitting parts of a word or of the words making up a term. In some cases, the first letter of a word will suffice. In others, the first letters of short phrases are grouped together. Precise rules are difficult to state because many well established abbreviations represent long-standing conventions for which there is no stated rule. Example: p. = etc. =

page et cetera

v. abbr.

= volume = abbreviation

• Initialisms Initialisms are created by using the first letter (or sound) of each term element to form a designation. Initialisms are pronounced by spelling out the letters. Example: UN. = United Nations a.m. = Latin, ante meridiem (before noon) PC = personal computer; politically correct • Acronyms Many acronyms are created in the same way that initialisms are created, but they are pronounced as if they were a single word. Example: ISO = International Standards Organization




DOS laser

= =


United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Orga­ nization disk operating system light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation

Mixed forms Some abbreviated forms function either as initialisms or acronyms, depending on the speakers' preference or regional conventions. Example: ISO, NASA

Blends Blends are formed by clipping and joining separate words. Like acronyms, blends are pronounced as ordinary words, but at least one word-element larger than a single letter is included to form the abbreviated form. Example: radar = radio detecting and ranging ALGOL = algorithmic language quasar = quasi-stellar object

Principles for abbreviating terms Each language has its own rules for the abbreviation process, so universal recom­ mendations are impossible. In general, however, • An abbreviation should be easy to pronounce and to remember. • A new abbreviation should not be identical to an existing abbreviation for another term or the same as the name of a company, organization, or trade name.

Good writing practice dictates that both the full form of a term and the abbre­ viation be indicated the first time a potentially unfamiliar abbreviation is used in a text. Symbols for the representation of SI units (i.e., Système International d'Unités) do not vary from language to language and have no plural. They are never written with periods (full stops). Example: m = metre

1 = litre



INFOBOX 9 Classification and Other Documentary Languages Direct access to specific items of information in a terminology database or in a printed dictionary is possible in four different ways: • alphabetical search of indexed keywords (e.g., in an alphabetical list) • full text search, i.e., search for any string (or part of a string) in a database • search using an all-word index • systematic search based on a knowledge ordering system, e.g., a thesaurus or a classification system The first three of these options are based on the formal presentation of data by graphic characters and the possibility of searching for them. The fourth method is based on the content (i.e., the conceptual knowledge organization) of a document or, in the case of a terminology database, of a database entry. The advantage of this method over more formal ones is that even those concepts can be searched and retrieved that are not explicitly mentioned or that are represented by a different term from the one the information seeker would expect. Such knowledge organization systems may be: • specifically constructed for a given information system (a certain library, a network of indexers, a team of terminologists, etc.), as is often the case with a thesaurus (e.g., the NASA Thesaurus, the INIS Thesaurus, etc.) • a list of keywords (e.g., subject headings) • a general ordering tool either for a specific subject field, e.g., INSPEC Classification, or for all subject fields, e.g., Universal Decimal Classification (UDC), Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) Common features of these ordering tools are their hierarchical structure in the form of generic concept systems (see Example 1 for a thesaurus entry) and the reduc­ tion of diversity in the terminology that is used ("controlled vocabulary"). These objectives are achieved by either eliminating synonyms altogether or admitting them as "non-descriptors" in a thesaurus system that point to the preferred terms ("des­ criptors"). Knowledge organization systems are used for terminology management in order to "flag" individual entries, thus indicating that they deal with a given topic or that



the concept described relates to a certain subject field, so that such entries may be re trieved together with other entries from the same subject field or topic (Example 2). Example 1 FUSION WELDING GS WELDING . LASER WELDING . . FUSION WELDING . . . GAS WELDING . . . . BRAZING LOW TEMPERATURE BRAZING RT ELECTRIC WELDING FLASH WELDING PRESSURE WELDING SPOT WELDING

(Generic Structure)

(Related Term)

Example 2 enTerm: deTerm: enDefinition: indexingTerm:

oxyacetylene gas Autogengas mixture of oxygen and acetylene used to produce an extremely hot flame to braze, weld, or cut metal GAS WELDING

Multilingual thesauri, retrieval systems, and World Wide Web (WWW) browsers have been developed that allow users to search for information that has been indexed in a language different from the one they are using. Due to efforts to meet the specific purposes of indexers working for a certain institution or a network, and the resulting methodology of establishing such multilingual thesauri (multilingual controlled vocabularies), the assignment of equivalents in several languages can contradict authoritative dictionaries or terminology collections (including terminology standards). While some publicly or commercially available terminology databases require the use of a given classification system (or none at all), people working actively in the field of terminology management who are setting up their own terminology databases may want to include their own classification system for grouping entries or to use a thesaurus for indexing their entries. In such situations, it is imperative to ensure that the ordering system chosen is not too detailed and yet covers all fields that are relevant. Above all, it must be easy to use. For individual users, huge classification systems such as the UDC or thesauri such as the NASA Thesaurus are usually too voluminous and detailed, but it is common to use or create reduced versions of such



systems on one's own. Increasingly such ordering systems are available in machinereadable form. It is not appropriate in this context to criticize or to recommend any specific ordering system (although of course some are better than others), nor is it possible to mention and describe all of them. It should not be forgotten that such systems have originally been created for a specific purpose where they fulfilled their role. When such systems are taken over into other work environments and organizational con­ texts, they usually have to be adapted—some concepts must be added, others deleted; parts may need to restructured, etc. The desire for a single universal classification system guaranteed to satisfy all possible needs is impossible to fulfill and must be rejected as an unrealistic illusion. The tendency is rather either to adapt existing systems, to create new ones, or to use several systems simultaneously. This practice can be enhanced with conceptual map­ ping among the systems, but in data banks that import large quantities of data from divergent systems, this may not be practical or cost-effective.



INFOBOX No. 10 Conceptual Relations Terminology management is to a great extent based on concept systems representing the links that exist among related concepts within specific subject fields. These connections may be hierarchical in nature or nonhierarchical. The most common hier­ archical relation documented in terminology work is the generic or logical relation. This relation deals with concepts that can be categorized by the statement x is a kind of y. Terminologists dealing with strictly conceptual structures speak of superordinate, subordinate, and coordinate concepts. The superordinate concept (the value y in the above statement) is construed as being a concept that can be subdivided into a number of lower-ranking concepts, whereas the subordinate concept (the value x) is seen as a concept that can be grouped together with at least one more concept of the same level to form a higher ranking concept (which is, of course, the superordinate concept). For instance, the concept tree can be subdivided into kinds of trees, i.e., maples, elms, cherries, etc. A group of concepts that exists at the same level within a concept system are considered to be coordinate concepts. These designations are always relative, depending on the relation being expressed, e.g., tree has a super­ ordinate relation to elm, and elm a subordinate relation to tree; there is a coordinate relation between elm, maple, cherry, etc. It is also possible to use the term broader concept to refer to a concept that exists one or more levels higher than the super­ ordinate concept. Plant might be such a concept in our example. The authors in this book sometimes use other frames of reference to talk about these same hierarchical relations. These systems represent different traditions that have evolved among terminologists, linguists, and documentation specialists. Linguists have frequently focussed on hierarchical systems made up of the terms that designate the concepts in a concept system. In this tradition, the term hyperonym is used to designate a superordinate term, hyponym to designate a subordinate term, and co-hyponym to designate a coordinate term. Many terminologists take care to limit the use of these designations specifically to term references and to avoid them when they want to talk about concepts. Care should be taken not to confuse the two systems described above with the terms used to designate the components of documentary languages or thesaurus descriptors. To a certain extent, similar relations are being designated, but one should not assume that these terms are synonyms or that the systems described are identical. In thesaurus structures, the superordinate term in a hierarchical relation is called a



broader term, the subordinate term is a narrower term, and the designation related term is applied to any terms that may be identified in some way with each other (see the discussion of associated concepts below), not just coordinate terms in hierarchical systems. This distinction reflects the fect that documentary languages are designed as search and retrieval mechanisms that have essentially a hierarchical structure, but that do not necessarily document complete concept systems. The highest term in the thesaurus structure is called the top term. Another kind of relation described by concept systems isthe,part-whole relation, which can be called a partitive relation, a whole-part relation, or a meronymic relation. The partitive relation describes a condition where the object x is a part of the object y. (Note that the partitive relation deals with objects whereas the logical or generic relation treats concepts.) Although many authors use superordinate, subordinate, and coordinate concepts to describe the hierarchical members of the partwhole relation, others prefer to designate the whole as the comprising concept and the part as the partitive concept. The terms broader term and narrower term are also used in this context as well. A sequential relationship exists when concepts occur one after the other. Sequential relationships can be temporal, i.e., follow each other in time, such as the seasons: spring, summer, fell, winter, or they can be spatial, such as the arrangement of keys on a piano or computer keyboard. Sometimes it is difficult to distinguish temporal from spatial criteria: the steps in a manufecturing process take place in a given temporal order, but they also proceed along an assembly line that is arranged in a certain spatial order. Sequential relationships are generally thought of as non-hierarchical, although some of them have a definite directionality to them or are overlaid with hierarchical relationships (e.g., in some cultures, the king or the bishop always sits in the highest chair, a father sits at the head of the table, the bride comes down the aisle last). Associative relationships (sometimes called pragmatic or thematic relationships) are the hardest to describe and are subject to the greatest difference of opinion. Cars can have associative relationships to highways, garages, passengers, or service stations. Certain tools are associated with specific professions (hammers with car­ penters, brush and palette with painters, etc.) or certain professions with characteristic places (teachers with schools, judges with courts, athletes with gymnasiums, etc.). Associative relations can be broken down into many different types, depending on the requirements of a given conceptual environment.



INFOBOX No. 11 Intension and Extension

Concept systems and definitions are largely based on the intension and the extension of concepts. The intension of a concept is that set of characteristics that constitutes the concept, e.g., for inhabitants of colder, northern climates, the intension of the concept winter includes freezing temperatures, ice, snow, high winds, etc. Intensional definitions are based on the enumeration of these characteristics. Definitions can also list the extension of a concept, i.e., the totality of the objects to which the concept refers. The classic example of an extensional definition is that for the concept planet cited on page 68. In contrast, a partitive definition lists all the parts that make up a whole. If the same definition were provided for solar system, it would no longer be extensional—it would become partitive. Extensional and partitive definitions can be very useful because they aid understanding, but they are less commonly used than intensional definitions because it can be very difficult to list all the instances or all the parts of a concept. For instance, it would be absurd to try to list the extension of the concept beetle (a kind of insect with many different varieties), whereas the extension of the word Beatle (a famous British rock group with only four well-known members) is well within the range of the possible.



INFOBOX No. 12 Standard Definitions

Example of an intensional definition with an explanatory note: 5.3.8 radix base (deprecated) positive integer by which the weight of any digit place (5.3.3) is multiplied to obtain the weight of the digit place with the next higher weight EXAMPLE—in the decimal numeration system (5.3.12) the radix of each digit place is 10. NOTE—The term "base" is deprecated in this sense because of its mathematical use (see definition in 5.2.1).

Some of the authors in this book use the classical terminology of lexicography to refer to portions of the term entry. The definiendum is the item or term that is defined in the term entry, and the definiens is that portion of the entry that defines, i.e., the definition proper, together with any other explanatory material. Within an intensional definition itself, the superordinate concept cited at the beginning of the definition is called the genus, and the individual features cited as characterizing the concept are the differentia, i.e., the properties that differentiate the concept from other related concepts in the same concept system. Another classical aspect of definitions that is cited in the book is the definitional equation. According to this rule, the term is seen as the semantic equivalent of the definition and vice versa. What this means is that a well-written, concise definition can be used to replace a term in a sentence without loss of meaning or distortion. It is not unusual to check the accuracy and precision of a definition by submitting it to such a test. For instance, if the definition of carriage return is "code that instructs the printer to begin a new line", one could replace the sentence: "End the paragraph with a carriage return." with the sentence: "End the paragraph with a code that instructs the printer to begin a new line. "



INFOBOX No. 13 Hypertext

Traditional methods for information presentation (especially in hardcopy form) have been primarily linear in nature. A classic example of this type of presentation is the alphabetical lexicographic dictionary. The dictionary, however, is also a good example of a hardcopy work that is not traditionally used in a linear fashion: people do not read dictionaries from cover to cover. They jump around in them looking for desired information, change their minds, read random entries, and pick up on new ideas. The indexes and tables of contents in hardcopy works enable people to move around in other kinds of documents and books in search of user-defined information that may be scattered throughout the document. In computer environments, electronic reference features allow users to navigate through computer documents and databases in much the same fashion, with the exception that individual movements are virtually instantaneous. In such environments, knowledge can be organized in shorter segments or nodes that are interlinked in various ways to create a complex web of information. In this kind of system, the nodes of information are organized so that they may be accessed by browsing from one node to another from novel points of view. This approach to text presentation is called hypertext. Hypertext technology supports the interactive, associative, and multipurpose use of information as compared to the linear, unidirec­ tional organization of traditional text. Many terminology database management systems use some form of hypertext to represent relations and links within the conceptual network represented by the database. Some have also progressed to the use of multimedia, such as graphics, audio, and video, to convey visual and acoustic information to provide a complete range of relevant knowledge resources. The evolution of the World Wide Web on the Internet represents the most extensive hypertext implementation to date, providing an environment where users can browse through sites throughout the world searching for information. Efforts such as the Virtual Hypertext Glossary project in the UK are aimed at providing interlinked terminological resources at varied sites in the WWW. For further infor­ mation, see: http://www.venus.co.uk/vhg.html



INFOBOX No. 14 Entailed Terms

Terms that are defined in terminological entries are often used in other definitions, contexts, and notes appearing in the same terminological collection. In many databases and hypertext systems, one can jump from such a term to the entry where it is defined. In such a case, the term is called an entailed term. As noted, an entailed term traditionally has been defined in the same glossary or database, but in rich hypertext applications, entailed term references may provide links to other databases on the same system or, in World Wide Web environments, to definitions residing at different Web sites. Entailed terms may also be highlighted as links in running text for cross-reference to terminological definitions in terminology files.



INFOBOX No. 15 Product Media

Today terminological data are being presented and made available in many different ways: • On paper: • as dictionaries, glossaries, vocabularies, sometimes attached to monographs ("hidden glossaries") • On diskette: • as an electronic (machine-readable) dictionary in read-only form, with a customized retrieval software that is not available or not applicable for any other purpose • as an electronic dictionary to be used together with specific terminology management software (usually read-only for copyright reasons) • as a file (e.g., ASCII or some text processor format) to be imported (loaded) into any database where it is needed. • On CD-ROM •

as electronic data extracted from one or more major terminology data banks combined with a common search interface in order to provide large-scale resources that fully utilize the 600 MB storage capacity of a single CD-ROM

Online (remote access, mailboxes, Internet Gophers, WWW, etc.) • via either electronic file transfer in batch mode or direct online query

Volume II, Appendix IV will contain a list of Internet (World Wide Web) addresses, accessible terminology databases, and other available resources. It is important to remember, however, that such lists are highly volatile and require frequent updating.



INFOBOX No. 16 Language Identifiers

Terminological and bibliographic entries, particularly in computerized environments, report the language in which a chunk of text or a cited work appears. For the sake of economy and consistency, standard language identifiers have been adopted to facilitate this practice. ISO 639:1988, Code for the representation of names of languages specifies a set of two-letter language symbols that are commonly used in terminology management. ISO 639-2: Code for the representation of names of languages. Bart 2: Alpha-3 code specifies a richer set of three-letter symbols. The title of the new document implies that the existing standard will eventually become Bart 1: Alpha-2 code. These symbols consist of two or three lowercase letters respec­ tively, usually the first two or three letters in the name of a language as expressed in that language, e.g.: en/eng = English; fr/fra =français;es/esp = espanol; de/deu = deutsch; etc. Care should be taken to avoid using uppercase letters for language identifiers because ISO 3166: Code for the representation of names of countries specifies the use of uppercase letters as country identifiers called country codes or country symbols e.g.: GB = Great Britain, US = United States, ES = Espana, FR = France The codes can be combined to reflect regional differences: fr FR = French French; fr CA = Canadian French The three-letter code system was developed by institutions such as the United States Library of Congress and UNESCO because there are not enough two letter codes to accommodate the large number of languages that must be cited in some environments, particularly large library systems. Some conflicts existed among the three-letter systems that evolved independently in that the Library of Congress list bases its codes on the representation of languages in English, whereas other insti­ tutions adhere to representation in the language itself. Obviously, this results in anomalies, e.g., deu = deutsch, as opposed to ger = German. The International Standard attempts to compensate for these differences. Appendix III in Volume II contains a chart showing the language codes, the country codes, and a set of proposed script codes.



INFOBOX No. 17 Bibliographic Source Identifiers

Material quoted in terminological entries (such as definitions, contexts, and notes) must be adequately identified with a bibliographic reference in order to document the validity of the information contained in the entry. One procedure that is followed in some terminology databases (TDBs) is to include the entire bibliographic entry in each terminological entry. This practice frequently results in the repetition of the same information in multiple entries, thus violating a cardinal rule of database management against maintaining redundant data. In more economical databases, bibliographic source identifiers are substituted as the content of source fields. In terminological entries, they serve as pointers (links) to full bibliographic entries, where the target of the pointer, the entry identifier is the same, identical code. If bibliographic entries reside in the same file with termino­ logical entries, mechanisms should be provided for separating them from terminological entries for data retrieval and manipulation. If they appear in separate files, the system should be capable of achieving hypertext-type cross-links to these external files. Depending on the nature of the work being cited, the bibliographic source identifier can be a library decimal number, an ISBN or ISSN, or a system-wide journal identification number. In the case of grey literature, i.e., literature that is not classified according to any of the recognized identification and retrieval systems, it can be freely assigned by the creator of the database. Terminologists can use the common citation system used in other scholarly works whereby a work is identified by the author's name, the year of publication, and, if several works are cited by the same author from the same year, by an additional sequential reference. Regardless of the system used, data interchange requires that an independent list be maintained or be generated in order to allow interchange partners to compare source identifiers and to harmonize usage if necessary in order to protect the integrity of the target database.



INFOBOX No. 18 Medical Etymology

CLOVE LYNCH As there is a very close relationship between the form, meaning, and linguistic use of medical terminology, classification and organization of this specialized language require a solid understanding of medical etymology. The five constituent elements of medical words are the root, prefix, suffix, combining vowel (usually the letter o) and combining form (composed of a root and combining vowel). Roots, such as dermat, gnos, path and radi, are the fundamental building blocks of medical terms. Prefixes and suffixes are qualifiers that further de­ limit the meaning of roots. While roots, prefixes, and suffixes have a profound influence on the meaning of a word, the combining vowel serves only to join roots to other roots or to suffixes where necessary, and has no semantic value of its own. These elements work together in a modular fashion, following strict patterns of use in combination. In this way, terms can be analyzed from the suffix back to the prefix to establish meaning. The term electroencephalogram, for example, can be analyzed as follows: ELECTR root (electricity)


O combining vowel


ENCEPHAL root (brain)


O combining vowel


GRAM suffix (record)

Reading from the suffix back to the first root, the definition of electroencephalogram (Hensyl 1990:496) is logical:

The record obtained by means of an apparatus consisting of amplifiers and a system for recording the electric potentials of the brain derivedfrom electrodes attached to the scalp. Hensyl, William R. Stedman's Medical Dictionary. 25th ed. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins, 1990.



INFOBOX No. 19 Doctoral Level Training

Many of the universities that offer terminology training do so within the framework of programs in Applied Linguistics, specifically translation and interpreting or the teaching of special languages. These programs may frequently also be associated with programs in library science and information science. Standard degrees awarded in such programs tend to be at the masters level involving a total of approximately 10 to 12 semesters of university study plus some sort of thesis. Whereas doctoral level studies in terminology may be fairly accessible in some countries, others do not offer the opportunity to study beyond the masters level. The most viable solution for individuals seeking advancement in this way is to conduct terminological research within the framework of a closely related discipline, such as philosophy of science, cognitive linguistics, or information science. Individuals wishing to pursue academic careers in terminology will probably also have to seek lectureships and professorships in these departments or in Applied Linguistics. Appendix IV of Volume II provides a list of universities with active terminology programs and indicates the level of the terminal degree offered by these programs, as well as logical combinations that may be structured in these programs.

Appendix I Terminology Manuals SUE ELLEN WRIGHT AND GERHARD BUDIN As noted by Picht and Partal, actual textbooks with a true peda­ gogical orientation are lacking in the field. In fact, because of the great diversity of learner orientation and the consequent variation in didactic requirements, it is questionable whether it would be possible to structure a book or program that would enjoy anything like universal applicability. Lacking commercially available teach­ ing texts, most terminology trainers combine existing manuals with their own handouts, transparencies, and practical exercises in order to create customized teaching packages. As more and more train­ ing programs integrate computer applications into their introduction to the practice of terminology management, relevant computer manuals and related instructional materials are also included in resources that support the learning process. The choice of any one manual or set of manuals to recommend to beginning terminologists depends first and foremost on the lin­ guistic needs of a given group of students and secondly on the the­ oretical and didactic orientation of the trainer(s). Obviously, manu­ als must be written in or translated into a language that the learners can read. On the one hand, many terminologists are bi- or multilinguals working in translation-oriented environments, so it is quite possible for them to read and use texts written in any one of several working languages. On the other hand, many subject-field experts and beginning students may not possess the degree of linguistic skill required to benefit fully from complex presentations in what is for them a foreign language. In such cases, high-quality translations into various working languages play a significant role in facilitating knowledge transfer in the field (for available trans­ lations, see the following bibliography, as well as the Selected General Bibliography included in Volume II of this Handbook). Nevertheless, even fairly good translations may be rejected if the resulting text is perceived as foreign to target audience expectations regarding knowledge organization or inherent assumptions about

training resources

SEE Terminology Training:305

language and cultural criteria



"known" information. This problem arises especially with begin­ ners who have little prior experience with the discipline. For instance, the Anglo-American preference for a bottom-up presen­ tation of information is incompatible with Germanic tendencies to favor a top-down text structure, and European-style, Aristotelian organizational approaches may seem odd in cultures that are based on equally valid, but different assumptions about the structure of human knowledge. As a result, although translations may solve initial problems when trainers first introduce terminology manage­ ment in national or regional settings, the most successful tools, especially for beginning learners, will in the long run be those that are generated by native speakers tailored to the needs and in­ tellectual habits of their specific linguistic communities. As has been the case at other points involving global topics treated in this book, the authors are quite aware that a discussion of manuals in the widest possible range of languages would be desirable. There are, for instance, excellent resources available in Dutch, Croatian, Polish, Czech, Russian, Finnish, Swedish, and Chinese, just to name a few. (For a comprehensive list, see the Selected General Bibliography included in Volume II of this Handbook.) Nevertheless, the fect remains that our own linguistic working environment is generally limited to Germanic and Ro­ mance languages. Although we are familiar with trends and activities elsewhere in the world, we cannot, unfortunately, take manuals published in Moscow or Beijing, Singapore or Tokyo in hand and comment on their merits. Consequently, the following list is limited to a collection of English, French, German, Spanish, and Catalan texts taken from our own libraries. The division of these works by language is obvious, so we have mostly ignored this factor as a criterion for evaluation. Our discussion classifies them exclusively in terms of their merits as teaching tools, not necessarily for their theoretical importance. The French language manuals are the most concise and prag­ matically oriented. Stéphane Tackels' brochure in particular pro­ vides a brief introduction to terminography devoid of theoretical underpinnings, with emphasis on presentational layout and the definition of a specific set of data categories. Such an approach can be useful for subject specialists working in a given environment who do not have the patience to delve more deeply into termi­ nology theory and practice, but it is deficient for the serious

Germanic and Romance Languages

basic manuals Tackels Dubuc

TERMINOLOGY MANUALS student. Like Tackels, Dubuc proposes a normalized format for terminology fiche, but goes beyond the apparently ad hoc approach of the former to include systematic research and the conscientious documentation of contextual references. In Spanish, Fedor is easy to read and gives a general and con­ cise overview of the subject field, and in German Hohnhold pro­ vides a fairly user-friendly, non-theoretical introduction that is use­ ful from the standpoint of the practice-oriented organization of ter­ minology management tasks in language service environments. In addition to offering a straight-forward, practical introduction to the topic, the KÜWES/COTSOWES notebook provides a readily accessible introduction that has proven especially useful for students and is particularly applicable for international or multi­ lingual settings because it is available in German, French, English, Italian, and Spanish. The book offers the multiple advantages of topical accessibility, a healthy balance between basic principles and practical applications, as well as extreme affordability. Gouadec provides a compact, and yet far more thorough intro­ duction to the development of terminological collections. His work is published by AFNOR and intended for standardizes and lan­ guage planners, among others. A major feature of the French school as exemplified by Gouadec is his careful differentiation among lexicographical, terminological, and terminographical ele­ ments in terminology management, a distinction many anglophone terminologists reject as arbitrary. Even for those who support this criticism, Gouadec's work is highly useful for its comprehensive methodological approach. He is one of the few manual authors to link terminological, terminographical resource management on the one hand with the creation of documentation thesauri on the other for the purpose of indexing the subject field covered by the data­ base or collection. He also offers useful information on data validation. At the other end of the scale, Eugen Wüster's introduction to the general principles of the field and Helmut Felber's manual, al­ though classics in the field, can be difficult for beginning students to relate to. As a consequence, many trainers feel that they are better reserved for use by advanced students and researchers who have already mastered the basic principles of the field. Arntz-Picht and Picht-Draskau, on the other hand, were designed specifically for use in introductory workshops and university training programs


Fedor Hohnhold



theoretical manuals Wüster Felber Arntz-Picht Picht-Draskau Felber-Budin



that treat both theoretical principles and traditional, manual prepa­ ration of terminological resources. Picht-Draskau has the added advantage that it provides a very natural English orientation that also draws on Anglo-Saxon linguistic theory, which makes the book more accessible to English readers than would perhaps be the case with a translation of some work originally written in another language. For readers of German, the Felber-Budin volume is more complete than many of the smaller, more practice-oriented manuals. Only Arntz-Picht and the North Americans (despite their con­ siderably shorter volumes) provide indexes, the lack of which un­ fortunately diminishes the value of any manual for either teaching or reference purposes. Instead of an index, Felber-Budin provides a detailed Table of Contents, which is useful up to a point, but which is not always user-friendly. The indignant assertion, ex­ pressed by some traditionalists, that the presence of a detailed index discourages readers from perusing a work from cover to cover may be partially valid from a certain perspective, but it seriously impairs the value of a book, particularly if it is intended to serve as a reference work designed to be used repeatedly. Despite its title, Sager's Practical Course is theoretical to the extent that, although it provides an excellent, even indispensable, orientation for the advanced student or practicing terminologist, it is not the ideal text to meet the needs of beginning students, par­ ticularly of undergraduate translation majors or subject specialists familiarizing themselves with the field for the first time. For Eng­ lish speakers and those who work actively with the English lan­ guage, however, it remains the most comprehensive resource that has been composed in a natural English idiom. With its emphasis on terminology processing in electronic environments, it is more applicable to state-of-the-art management techniques than the bulk of the earlier works. Sager's desire to link lexicographical and ter­ minological aspects and his emphasis on multi-layered information documentation and retrieval in the context of text corpora reflects his strong interest in computerized database management and na­ tural language processing. Alain Rey's original essays in French are scattered in various resources, but Sager's collection and translation of Rey's major contributions constitute a kind of manual that differs significantly from the other works cited here. An ideal resource for advanced


terminology processing Sager

history of ideas Rey

TERMINOLOGY MANUALS students and researchers, Rey's work is unique in its approach to terminology from the framework of the history of ideas. A famed lexicographer, he clearly delineates the distinction between lexico­ graphy and terminology and elucidates his position on terminology vis à vis terminography. We have classified his work as more val­ uable to advanced students not because it is difficult or inaccessible (the Sager translation is extremely readable) but rather because it does not presume to deal with many of the basic methodologies treated elsewhere. Cabré's book presents comprehensive coverage of both the theoretical aspects of terminology studies and the practical details of terminology management. She draws on various schools of thought to produce an integrated overview of the field, while at the same time maintaining a high level of accessibility and readability. Some of the most practical introductions to terminology man­ agement are those prepared by the national and international stan­ dards institutes for use by their subject specialists. Although these documents may not address all the issues pertinent to students in academic environments or, for instance, translators, they may pro­ vide useful supplemental insight. Besides, national standards reflect regional and language-specific differences and theoretical orienta­ tions. For instance, ISO TC 37's International Standard 10241, International Terminology Standards — Preparation and layout provides detailed instructions on working methods and layout that are highly useful in bilingual environments, but applicable to nonstandards settings as well. ISO 704, Principles and methods, introduces users to the fundamentals of term-concept theory. The most promising document to come out of TC 37 in recent years is the proposed Guide to Terminology, which is expressly designed as a brief, but comprehensive introduction to the discipline. One of the perennial frustrations of creating such documents is that potential users frequently reject as "too complex" anything that proposes to be at all complete—a complaint that has been lodged against even the fairly compact Guide and against ASTM's very concise Form and Style Guide. Of course, Gouadec's book cited above can also be viewed as belonging in the category of stan­ dards-related works. When using guides from the standards organi­ zations, it is important to bear in mind that the layout criteria spelled out in such documents are not binding upon outside users, although they may provide useful orientation.







Arntz, Reiner, and Heribert Picht. 1989. Einführung in die Terminologiearbeit. Studien zu Sprache und Technik. Vol. 2. Reiner Arntz and Norbert Wegner, eds. Hildesheim/ Zürich/New York: Georg Olms. [Spanish version: 1995. Introduccióna la terminologfa. Traducción del alemán, Amelia de Irazazábal [et al.] Madrid: Pirámide/FGSR.] ASTM. 1989. "Part E: Preparation and Use of Terminology in ASTM Standards. " Form and Style for ASTM Standards. Philadelphia: ASTM. Cabré, M.Teresa. 1992. La terminologia. La teoria, els métodes, aplicacions. Próleg de Jean-Claude Corbeil. [Spanish version: 1993. La terminologfa: Teoria, metodologia, aplicaciones. Prólogo de Juan C. Sager. Barcelona: Editorial Antártida] [English: Forth­ coming. Terminology: Theory, Methods, and Applications. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.] Dubuc, Robert. 1985. Manuel Practique de Terminologie, 2e édition, revue et augmentée. Quebec: Linguatech. Felber, Helmut. 1984. Terminology Manual. Paris: UNESCO and Infoterm. [French version: 1984. Manuel de Terminologie.] Felber, Helmut, and Budin Gerhard. 1989. Terminologie in Theorie und Praxis. Tübingen: Gunter Narr Verlag. [Polish version: 1994. Teoria i praktyka terminologii. Translated by Czislawa Schatte. Warsaw: Warsaw University.] Gouadec, Daniel. 1990. Terminologie: Constitution des données. Paris: AFNOR. Hohnhold, Ingo. 1990. Übersetzungsorientierte Terminologiearbeit: Eine Grundlegung für Praktiker. Stuttgart: Intra. ISO 704:1987. Principles and methods of terminology. Geneva: International Organization for Standardization. ISO 10241:1992. Terminology standards—Preparation and layout. Geneva: ISO. KÜWES. 1990. Empfehlungenfurdie Terminologiearbeit. [Recommendations for Terminology Vork]. Konferenz der Übersetzungsdienste westeuropäischer Staaten; Arbeitsgruppe Terminologie und Dokumentation, Ed. Bern: Schweizerische Bundeskanzlei. [English version: COTSOWES. 1990. Conference of Translation Services of Western European States: Recommendations for Terminology work. Also available in French, Italian, and Spanish.] Picht, Heribert, and Jennifer Draskau. 1985. Terminology: an Introduction. Surrey: The Department of Linguistic and International Studies. Rey, Alain. 1995. Essays on Terminology. Juan C. Sager, translator and editor. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company Sager, Juan C. 1990. A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company Tackels, Stéphane. 1990. Typographie et terminologie: Guide de présentation des travaux terminologiques. Les Publications de Québec: Etudes, recherches et documentation. Québec: Gouvernement du Québec. Wüster, Eugen. 1991. Einfiihrung in die allgemeine Terminologielehre und terminologische Lexikographie. 3rd. Edition. Bonn: Romanistischer Verlag.

Appendix II Abbreviations The authors have endeavored to always state the full form of every abbreviation the first time it is used in an article, but sometimes the explanation of an abbreviation occurs long before its next use and finding the full form can be difficult. Other abbreviations are so common that authors prefer not to spell them out, but individual readers may still be unfamiliar with them. The following list is provided for user convenience. Abbreviation

Full Form


American Chemical Society Adverse Drug Reaction (UK Medicines Control Acency's terminology) Association Française de Normalisation Association française de terminologie Association générale des usagers de la langue française American Medical Association American National Standards Institute American Standard Code for Information Interchange American Society for Testing and Materials Association des univeristés partiellement ou entièrement de langue française British Approved Names (drugs) Chemical Abstracts Computer Aided Design Computer Aided Instruction Computer Aided Manufacturing Chemical Abstracts Service Computer-Assisted Translation Comité Européen de Normalisation (European Committee for Standardization) Characteristic Comparison Matrix (CODE system) Compact Disk-Read-only-Memory Conseil international de la langue française Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers Common Information System





Centre national de la recherche scientifique Conceptually Oriented Description Environment Coding Symbols for Thesaurus of Adverse Reaction Terms Commission on Nomenclature of Inorganic Chemistry (TUPAC) Computer-Based Patient Record Institute Current Procedural Terminology (AMA) Constitutional Repeating Unit (chemistry) Centre de terminologie et de néologie Dewey Decimal Classification Délégation générale à la langue française Draft International Standard International Article Numbering Association Electronic Data Interchange Equivocal Term European Union Fully Automatic High Quality Translation U.S. Food and Drug Administration Association française de terminologie File Transfer Protocol General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade Graphical User Interface Human-Assisted Machine Translation Healthcare Informatics Standards Planning Panel International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clini­ cally Modified Interdivisional Committee on Nomenclature and Symbols (IUPAC) Information and Documentation International Electrotechnical Commission Information Infrastructure Task Force (Copyright issues) International Institute for Terminology Research (Abbreviation based on the German Terminologiç/orschung) International Nuclear Information System International Nonproprietary Names (drugs) Information Service in Physics, Electrotechnology, Computers, and Control International and Interdisciplinary Co-operation on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis Intellectual Property Right International Standards Association (Becomes ISO)



International Standard Book Numbering (ISO 2108) International Standard Music Number (ISO 10957) International Organization for Standardization International Standard Recording Code (ISO/DIS 3901) International Standard Technical Report Number (ISO 10444) International Social Science Council, Standing Committee on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis International Standard Serial Numbering (ISO 3297) International Union of Biochemistry International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology International Union for Pure and Applied Chemistry Japanese Accepted Names (drugs) Joint Commission on Biochemical Nomenclature (IUPAC) Language 1, Language 2 (Frequently source language/target language in translation or mother-tongue language/2nd language in foreign language learning) Large Scale Integrated Circuit Languages for Special Purposes Machine-Assisted Human Translation Machine-Readable Terminology Interchange Format (ISO 12200) Machine-Assisted Translation Megabyte (1,000,000 bytes) Medical Dictionary for Drug Regulatory Affairs MODification (CAS index name) Machine Translation North American Nursing Diagnosis Association (NANDA) National Aeronautics and Space Administration (United States) Nomenclature Committee (IUPAC) PARent (CAS index name) Personal Computer Medical classification system, developed by the National Health Service of Great Britain Réseau international de néologie et de terminologie Read-Only-Memory Ring Systems Handbook (CAS) Sub-committee (ISO and other standards organizations) Standard Generalized Markup Language Système International d'Unités (International System of Units) Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine Structural Repeating Unit (chemistry)


HANDBOOK OF TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT, Vol 1 Suggested Term STEreochemical (CAS index name) Scientific and Technical Information Network SUBstituent (CAS index name) Technical Committee (ISO and other standards organizations) Terminology Database Terminological Knowledge Base Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Universal Decimal Classification Unified Medical Language System United Nations United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization Universités des Réseaux d'expression française United States Adopted Name (drugs) United States Pharmacopeial Convention Unequivocal Term Very Large Scale Integrated Circuit World Health Organization World Intellectual Property Organization World Trade Organization World Wide Web

Acknowledgements Chapter 1.2.1, "Term Formation", by Juan C. Sager, is a modified extract from Chapter 3 (pp.61-90) of the author's A Practical Course in Terminology Processing. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1990. A fuller description of term formation processes of English can be found in Chapter 9 (pp. 230-300) of Sager, Juan C , David Dungworth, and Peter F. McDonald. English SpecialLanguages. Principles and Practice in Science and Technology. Wiesbaden: Brandstetter, 1980. The authors of Chapter 1.4.2, "Systematic Concept Analysis within a KnowledgeBased Approach to Terminology" acknowledge the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC and the University of Ottawa, as well as the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), BellNorthern Research Ltd., and the University Research Incentives Fund of the Govern­ ment of Ontario for support of the CODE project. Contributers to the CODE project include Yves Beauvillé, Lynne Bowker, Daniel Epstein, Ken Iisaka, Timothy Lethbridge, Bruce McHaffie and David Miller. The author of Chapter 1.4,3, "Multidimensional Classification of Concepts and Terms", wishes to acknowledge valuable contributions made by Dr. Ingrid Meyer and Dr. Douglas Skuce, who are in charge of the COGNITERM and CODE projects at the AI Lab of the University of Ottawa, Canada, and Professor Juan C. Sager of the Centre for Computational Linguistics, UMIST, Manchester. Chapter 2.2.3 draws on the author's typology study of patents in English, French and German (Lawson, 1979), performed for the Commission of the European Communi­ ties and partly reported elsewhere (Lawson, 1983), and appeared previously in 1983 as : "The Language of Patents: A Typology of Patents, with particular reference to Machine Translation". Lebende Sprachen 2. Chapter 2.2.4, Chemical Nomenclature: Figure 6: Copyright by the American Chemical Society and reprinted with permis­ sion. Figure 9: Copied from USAN and the USP Dictionary ofDrug Names. Copyright the United States Pharmacopeial Convention, Inc. Permission granted.

Authors' Biographical Information Compilers Sue Ellen Wright is an Associate Professor teaching in the Institute for Applied Linguistics at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. She is Vice-Chair of USA Technical Advisory Group to ISO/TC 37 and convener of the SC 3 Working Groups charged with preparing ISO 12200 (Terminology Interchange) and ISO 12620 (Data Categories). Address: Sue Ellen Wright Department of Modern and Classical Language Studies Institute for Applied Linguistics Kent State University Kent Ohio 44242, USA FAX: +1330-673-0738 email: [email protected] Gerhard Budin is a Research Associate and Lecturer at the University of Vienna in the Department for Philosophy of Science and Social Studies ofScience. He has con­ ducted numerous terminology seminars all over the world and has focused his research activities in the areas of terminology studies in the context of Applied Philosophy of Science and Translation Studies. Address: Gerhard Budin Department for Philosophy of Science and Social Studies of Science University of Vienna Sensengasse 8 A-1090 Vienna, Austria FAX: +43 1-408-8838 email: [email protected]

Contributors Bruno de Bessé is a Professor of Lexicography and Terminology at the École de Traduction et d'Interprétation (University of Geneva). He is also a consultant on terminological questions to the Chancellerie d'État of the Swiss Canton of Berne, dictionary editor for the publishing house Le Robert, and a member of the editorial board of Terminology. Byron J. Bossenbroek is a Senior Scientific Information Analyst in the Authority Database Operations Department at Chemical Abstracts Service in Columbus, Ohio, USA. His work involves generating and editing names for newly registered organic compounds, especially carbohydrates, nucleosides and other natural products. Catherine A. Bowman is an independent terminologist, translator (French-English) and lexicographer, and the proprietor of Paroles écrites. She has compiled voca­ bularies on the paper industry and municipal government and is a member of the Canadian Advisory Committees to ISO/IEC/JTC 1/SC 1 (Information Technology Vocabulary) and ISO TC 37, Terminology (principles and coordination). Lynne Bowker is assistant lecturer in the School of Applied Languages and Intercultural Studies at Dublin City University, where she teaches courses in applied compu­ tational linguistics and scientific and technical translation (French-English). Her areas of research interest include: computational terminography and lexicography, corpus linguistics, MT, concept classification, and specialized subject/language learning. Robert Dubuc was head of Linguistic Services of the Canadian Broadcasting Cor­ poration for 32 years. He also lectured on terminology at the Université de Montréal from 1969 to 1995. He is at present president of Linguatech, Inc., a publishing firm noted for its titles in translation, technical writing, and terminology studies. Karen Eck is a Senior Information Officer at Bell Northern Research Inc., in Ottawa, Canada. Her MA thesis was on the use of knowledge-engineering technology to assist in the construction of terminological definitions. Christian Galinski is Director of Infoterm (the International Information Centre for Terminology) and Secretary of Technical Committee 37 of the International Organization for Standardization. He has played a leading role in the founding of TermNet (The International Terminology Network) and of the Association for Terminology and Knowledge Transfer.



John Humbley is in charge of the Centre de terminologie et neologie, a center for research and documentation in terminology. He is a professor of Langues étrangères appliquées at the Université de Paris XIII, Villetaneuse. Kyo Kageura is an assistant professor at the Japanese National Center for Science Information Systems. His research specialty focuses on the theoretical nature of term formation. He is currently working from both a conceptual and a corpus-based, quantitative point of view, with the intention if eventually integrating the two perspec­ tives. Andy Lauriston was senior terminologist at Teleglobe Canada from 1982 to 1991, where he co-authored telecommunications dictionaries and participated in ISO terminology standardization. Since founding Semantech in 1991, Mr. Lauriston has conducted research in computerized terminography at the University of Québec at Montréal and at UMIST (Manchester). Veronica Lawson has been a translation consultant since 1978 in London, England. She specializes in patents and in machine translation. Publications include studies on patent language and machine-translatability of patents for the Commission of the European Communities. She was vice-president of the International Federation of Translators. Clove Lynch is currently a Project Director at Terra Pacific Writing Corporation in Corvallis, Oregon. He holds an MA in Translation Studies and Spanish from Kent State University, is ATA-accredited from Spanish into English, and is a member of the Drug Information Association (DIA). Matti Malkia is a Research Associate at the University of Tampere, Finland, in the Department of Administrative Science. He is Chair of the International Social Science Council, Standing Committee on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis (ISSC/ COCTA) and its INTERCOCTA (International and Interdisciplinary Co-operation on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis) project. Joy E. Merritt is a Senior Scientific Information Analyst in the Authority Database Operations Department at Chemical Abstracts Service in Columbus, Ohio, USA. She is responsible for providing assistance with chemical nomenclature to various user communities including the United States Adopted Names Council and the World Health Organization.



Ingrid Meyer is an Associate Professor at the School of Translation and Inter­ pretation of the University of Ottawa, Canada. Her teaching and research interests are in computer-assisted terminology and lexicology, as well as computer aids for translators. Diane Michaud is Chief of the Division for Terminotics, Desktop Publishing, and Standardization, which is part of the Terminology and Standardization Directorate of the Canadian Translation Bureau. She is secretary of Sub-Committee 2 of ISO Tech­ nical Committee 37, Terminology (principles and coordination). She is also active in the Terminology Committee of the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). Carmen Acuña Partal has been an Associate Lecturer at the Universities of Granada and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain (1992-1995) and is currently lecturing at the Department of English of the University of Malaga. Her research interests include Applied Linguistics, English for Special Purposes (ESP), terminology, translation, and documentation. Heribert Picht is a Professor at the Copenhagen School of Economics in the Institute for Spanish, where he specializes in translator training and terminology studies and has conducted terminology seminars throughout Europe and South America. His research areas include theoretical and applied linguistics, special languages, and special language communication. Fred Riggs is a Professor Emeritus of the University of Hawaii Political Science Department. His interest in terminology began when conducting research in Thailand which led him to worry about how to represent novel concepts in an environment resistant to neologisms. He has worked with UNESCO and the INTERCOCTA project of the ISSC since 1975 to find acceptable remedies. Juan C Sager is an emeritus Professor of the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology. He was for many years chairman of the BSI technical committee for terminology. His publications range over information technology, special languages, terminology, and translation. Jean Schrade has long been active in ISO TC 61 for Plastics, where he served for many years as a member and, for a time, as chair of Sub-Committee 1 for termino­ logy. He was to a great extent responsible for managing the development of ISO 472, Plastics — Terminology.



Douglas Skuce is an Associate Professor at the Department of Computer Science, University of Ottawa. His research is in Knowledge Engineering, particularly concep­ tual analysis and knowledge acquisition from online text. Richard Strehlow is a retired materials scientist from Oak Ridge National Labora­ tory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He has written numerous publications in terminology, including the editorship of three books on standardizing terminology published by the American Society of Testing and Materials. He is past chair of the ASTM Committee on Terminology. Heidi Suonuuti is chair of the International Standards Organization Technical Com­ mittee for Terminology (principles and coordination). She is retired from her position as Director of TSK, the Finnish Centre for Technical Terminology, and is widely recognized as a leading expert in the methodology for standardizing technical terminologies. Leland D. Wright, Jr. is a free-lance translator and is ATA accredited from Spanish into English. He operates his own translation bureau, teaches as an Adjunct Professor in the Institute for Applied Linguistics at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio, and is one of the original co-developers of the MTX (TERMEX™) terminology database management system.

Index A Abbott, Edwin, 93, 97 Abbreviated forms of terms, 16, 37, 332 Achinstein, Peter, 119, 132 Ahmad, Khurshid, 1 Arnzt, Reiner, 13, 23. 351-352, 354 ASTM. See American Society for Testing and Materials American Society for Testing Materials, 198, 199, 200


B Benson, Evelyn, 15, 23 Benson, Morton, 15, 23

Chemical nomenclature, 218 and synonyms, 218-219 biochemical, 227-228 bibliography of, 239-241 Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS), 219, 229-230, fig.5, 232, 233 drug nomenclature and, 234-235, fig.8, 237 inorganic, 226 International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), 222223, 233 macromolecular, 227, fig.4, 228 names, 233-234 organic, 223-226, fig. 3, 225, fig.7, 235 ring name, fig.6, 231, 232 stereoparent, 232 unambiguous names and, 219, 221-222 unique names and, 221-222

Block, B. Peter, 226, 242 Bossenbroek, Byron J., 218

Chute, Christopher, 160, 169-170

Bouly, Henri Georges, 176, 183

Clark, Charles, 289, 301

Bowker, Lynne, 4, 106, 117, 133, 139, 143, 148

Classification and documentary languages, 334-336 and terminology, 137-138 concept systems, 122-126, fig.2, 123, 128-129 See also concept systems guidelines for, 139-142 multidimensionality of, 128-129, fig.2, 135 schemes, 192-193, fig. 5-6, 193

Bowman, Catherine, 215 Budin, Gerhard, 5-7, 13, 23, 18, 184, 245, 256, 259, 352, 354 C Cabré, M. Teresa, 353-354 Campbell, James, 169

Classiflcatory organization. See classification

Caplan, Ruth, 181, 183

Clifford, F Alan, 173, 183

Carbonell, J., 118

Cole, WD., 109, 117

Carlson, L., 124, 132

Cohn, Simon P., 169



Côté, Roger, 162, 170 Concept analysis characteristics and, 100-102, table 1, 102 computers and, 108-114, fig.2, 110, fig.3, 111, fig.4, 112, 116 knowledge-based, 98-99, 100 subject-field knowledge, 100, 108 terminology management, 106-107 Concept systems characteristics of, 120-122, fig.l, 121 classification of, 122-126, fig.2, 123, 128-129. See also classification conceptual relations and, 96, 103, 190 hierarchy and, 103 generic, fig. 1, 89, 104, table 2, 105, monodimensionality, 95, fig. 7, 96 multidimensionality, 94, 97, 120-122, 128, 130-132 partitive, fig. 2, 90 sequential, fig. 3, 91 Conceptual glossary, 195-196 conceptual relations and, 190, 192 hypertext and, 193 Context concept identification, 81 definition of, 81, 83-84 machine-aided, 86 role of 84-85 types of, 82-83 Cooper, Robert, 247, 259 Copyright Anglo-American, 284 authors and, 282-283, 284, 286 coding systems and, 293-295 General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GATT/TRIPS), 285 intellectual property and, 281, 289, 292 law and, 287-288, 295 ownership, 297

technology and, 289-291, 296 terminology management and, 286-287, 295, 297-298, 299-301 Corbolante, Licia, 7 Creifelds, Carl, 282, 301 D Dahlberg, Ingetraut, 192, 196 de Bessé, Bruno, 4, 64 Definitions. See also terminography characteristics of, 70-72 frames and, 75, fig. 2, 77, 78-79 hybrid, 72 models of, 76-77 types of, 68-70 Dermer, Otis C , 242 Descriptive terminology in the social sciences. See social science terminology objective of, 18 Downing, RA., 130, 132 Draskau, Jennifer, 13, 23, 89, 97, 101, 118, 351, 354 Dubuc, Robert, 4, 80, 351, 354 Dungworth, David, 41 Düsterbeck, Bernd, 1 E Eck, Karen, 4, 98 Evens, Martha Walten, 119, 132 Everson, Michael, 256 F Felber, Helmut, 13, 23, 89, 97, 120, 132, 352, 354

INDEK Fletcher, John H., 242

367 Co-operation on Conceptual and Terminological Analysis

Fox, Robert B., 242

International and Interdisciplinary Coop­ eration on Conceptual and Terminolo­ gical Analysis, 184

Frenelius, W. Conrad, 226, 242 Fresenius, Philipp, 225, 242 G Galinski, Christian, 4, 5, 42, 281, 302 Gervais, Daniel, 296, 302 Godly, Edward W., 225, 242 Gouadec, Daniel, 351, 353-354

International Organization for Standardi­ zation, 202, 204, 210, 212 ISO 472, 209. See Plastics industry ISO 10241,203,207,208 ISO TC 46, 259 Technical Committee 37 for, 203-204 writing of standards, 204-207 Isenberg, A.C, 234, 242

Goebels,L., 234, 242

ISO. See International Organization for Standardization

H J Hayes-Roth, E, 99, 117

Joseph, Michael C , 170

Headwords, 34, 330 Healthcare informatics. See terminology management


Hempel, Carl G, 119, 132 Hesser, W., 7 Hohnhold, Ingo, 14, 23, 155, 159 Humbley, John, 5, 261 Hutcheson, Helen, 1 I Identifiers bibliographic source, 345 language, 344

K Kageura, Kyo, 4, 119, 124, 130, 132 Kaufman, /., 118 Roller, Hans, 157, 159 Knowledge representation, example 18, 60 alphanumeric characters and, fig. 1, 46 complex graphic symbols and, 48, fig.4a, b, c-5, 49, fig. 6a, b, 7, 50 forms of, 51-54 graphic, 42-45 graphic symbols, fig. 2, 47, pictorial, fig. 3a, 47 Kukulska-Hulme, A., 98-99, 117

Ilson, Robert, 15, 23 Intellectual property rights. See copyright


INTERCOCTA, 184-185, 192, 196. See also International and Interdisciplinary

Language and alphabetical sorting, 259



environments, 246, 250-252 Medical terminology management for special purposes, 330. See also coding systems and, 162-164 special languages databases and, 164-167, fig. 1, 166, and multilingualism, 252 fig. 2, 168 identifiers, 344 guide to, 169-170 planning, 245, 248. See also language I healthcare industry and, 160-161 planning, francophone j Medin, Douglas L, 120, 132 purity, 249 technology, 253-256, fig.l, 254 Melby, Alan, 7, 153, 159 transcription, 257-258 Merritt, Joy E., 218 transliteration, 257, 258 Meyer, Ingrid, 4, 98, 114, 117 Language planning, francophone anglicisms in France and, 263-265 Michaud, Diane, 215 Association Française de Normalisation Mockus, j., 234, 242 (AFNOR), 261, 351 French history of, 262 Moor, Georges de, 169 ministerial committees and, 265-266 Monarch, T, 118 terminology planning and, 262 transport terminology, 266-269 Moor, Georges de, 169 Lauriston, Andy, 4, 80

Moskovich, Wolf, 181, 183

Lawson, Veronica, 5, 171, 183

Moss, G. P, 223

Lehman, Bruce, 281, 283, 285, 302 Le Néal, Jocelyne, 7 Lexicography definition of, 64 vs. terminology, 328

N Nagle, Tim E., 119, 132 Neff, Mary, 1, 327

Lloyd, Barbara B., 119, 124, 132

Neologisms, 40-41

Loening, Kurt L., 242

Nicken, Alex, 226, 242

Lynch, Clove, 5, 160, 165, 170

Nirenburg, S, 102, 118, 124, 132

Lyons, John, 66, 74

Nkwenti-Azeh, Blaise, 1

M Målkiå, Matti, 5, 18, 184, 196 Mayer, Felix, 1 McDonald, Peter F., 41 Medical etymology, 346

Nykänen, Olli, 198, 202 P Partal, Carmen Acuña, 5, 305 Patent terminology management classes of, 173-177 patentese and, 173


369 definition of, 27 See also term formation

patents and, 171, 172, 181-182 structure markers and, 178-181 Echt, Heribert, 4, 5, 13, 23, 89, 97, 101, 118 42,305, 351-352,354

Shreve, Gregory M., 7, 94, 97

Peirce, Charles Sanders, 75, 79

Skuce, Douglas, 4, 98, 117

Plastics industry ISO 472, 209, 214, 227 ISO R 194, 211, 212, 213-214

Smith, Edward E., 120, 132

Silversmith, Ernest E, 226, 242

Social science terminology descriptive terminology and, 185

Prescriptive terminology, 197 Primary term formation definition of, 27. See also term formation Pugh, J.M., 122, 132 Putnam, Hillary, 78-79

Sowa. John, 105, 118 Special languages, 13, 43, 307, 330 Subject-specific terminology, 19-20 Standardized terminology. See terminology standards Strehlow, Richard A,, 5-6, 75, 203


Suonuuti, Heidi, 5, 215

Quist, Christian, 94, 97 T R

Tackels, Stéphane, 350-351, 354

Rey, Alain, 64, 74, 352, 354

Term formation borrowing and, 29, 41 compounding, 34 compression and, 37 conceptual relations in, 26 conversion and, 37 definition of, 26 existing resources and, 28-38 neologisms, 40-41 patterns of, 28-41 primary, 27 secondary, 27, 41 systematic naming and, 26

Riggs, Fred W, 5, 18, 184, 196 Rosch, Eleanor, 119, 124, 132 Roulin, Courentin., 6 Rudder, Brenda, 165, 170 S Sager, Juan C., 4, 7, 13, 23, 25, 41, 64, 74, 103, 118-121, 124, 130, 132, 138, 143, 201-202, 352, 354 as translator, 63 Schmitz, Klaus-Dirk, 1 Schrade, Jean, 5, 209 Secondary term formation, 41

Terminography, 65-66. See also definitions activities, 327 chararacteristics of definition and, 7072



hybrid definitions and, 72 knowledge structures and, 66 terminology versus, 65 training, 310 types of definitions and, 68-70

academic, 305 compulsory, 305-306, 309-311 computer-aided (CAI), 318 doctoral level, 347 didactic methods and, 317-318 manuals used in, 349, ff. nonacademic, 308 optional component of, 306-308, 311314 syllabi for, 314-316 teaching material for, 319-320 teachers of, 320-321

Terminological units collocation, 15 definition of, 13 multiword, 14 set phrase, 15 single word, 14 Terminology management, 13 ad hoc, 19, 147-148, fig.2, 150, 265 chemical. See chemical nomenclature computer-assisted, 153-154, 156-158 concept analysis, 106-107 See also concept analysis descriptive and prescriptive, 329. See also descriptive terminology and social science terminology for technical writers, 19 for translators, 19 guide to, 215-217 knowledge representation, 42-61. See knowledge representation medical, 165-167. See medical terminology management monolingual, 198 multilingual, 199 patent, 171. See legal terminology management systemic, 148, fig.2, 150 working environments, 151-158

TERMIUM, 63 Translators and translation environments, 153 limitations of, 148-149 terminology training and, 306 Trimble, R.E., 223, 242 Tyler, Stephan A., 122, 132 V Virtual Hypertext Glossary, 341 Vander Stouw, C.G., 234, 242 Vogel, Martin, 290-291, 302 W Wettengel, Tanguy, 6 Wiesniewski, J.L., 234, 242

Terminology collections, 325-326

World Wide Web, 8, 223, 341

Terminology standards, 20-22 organizational strategies and, 197-198 limitations to, 201-202 plastics industry, 213. See also plastics industry writing, 204-205

Wright, LelandD., 5, 147

Terminology training

Wright, Sue Ellen, 4-5, 7, 13, 89, 108, 118, 147, 197,245,281 as translator, 42 Wüster, Eugen, 100. 119, 351, 354