[whatwg] ISO 639 / ISO 3166 / ISO 4217 inputs

Ave Wrigley ave.wrigley at itn.co.uk
Wed Aug 18 09:37:29 PDT 2004

> > Have you considered defining language / country / currency inputs as 
> > part of Web Forms 2.0? Especially country codes - I don't know how
> > many 
> > times I have seen different implementations of country selectors on
> > web 
> > forms. It would be good to abstact this away, especially as it 
> > centralises the maintenance of the list of countries. 
> Unfortunately, official lists of languages, country codes, and currency 
> inputs often do not keep up to date fast enough for use in applications. 
> It is also common for applications to have different requirements in
> terms of which countries, languages, currencies to display. 
> Thus it seems that it would be impractical to have a predefined list
> like this. 
> Thanks for your input, though! 

Although these lists are predefined, they are also updated regularly; take 
ISO 3166, (19 times since 3166-1 in 1997). I think this is pretty widely 
recognised as a difinitive list of countries - in fact it is what two
letter top level domains are based on. It is also very widely used anyway in
web forms, with the two or three letter code being used as the value for
the option elements corresponding to each country. Of course, if you
wish to still construct country lists by hand, there is nothing to stop
you (if, for example, you want to bring certain countries to the top of
an alphabetical list). This just provides an opportunity for developers
to offer this common control without having to construct and maintain
list of countries, and for browsers to do smart stuff like optionally
preselecting countries from a list based on browser configuration / user
options / etc.


Ave Wrigley, Head of Development, ITN New Media
200 Grays Inn Rd, Tel: +44-20-7430-4719
London WC1X 8XZ,  Mob: +44-7713-986247
United Kingdom    mailto:ave.wrigley at itn.co.uk

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