Standards Watch

Additional Announcements from NISO

We have two new announcements from Cindy Hepfer, ALA Voting Representative to NISO. These too also have fairly short deadlines (though not as short as the last group, thankfully).

1. ISO/FDIS 16245, Boxes, file covers and other enclosures, made from cellulosic materials, for storage. This ballot is for the final draft standard, described thusly:

“This International Standard specifies requirements for boxes and file covers, made of cellulosic material, to be used for long term storage of documents on paper or parchment. It is applicable to boxes made of solid or corrugated board and to file covers made of paper or board. It can also be applicable to other types of enclosure for long-term storage such as cases, portfolios, tubes and envelopes made of cellulosic material. It is NOT applicable to storage of photographic materials.”

When commenting to Cindy keep in mind that at this final stage a “Yes” vote can only have editorial non-substantive comments. Cindy’s deadline for comments is Friday, Oct. 9, 2009. The draft is available from Cindy (you must be an ALA member and tell her so). Her email is: (please copy me at so that we can keep track of interest from these announcements).

2. New Work Item (NWI) Proposal: Simplified natural language – Part 1: Basic concepts and general principles (simpL-1). This is a proposal from the liaison committee TC37/SC4 (Terminology and other language and content resources / Language resource management) for a new work item.

In the 3-page work item proposal, the scope of the proposed project is given as follows:

Basic concepts and general principles concerning simplified natural languages facilitate:
-Reducing ambiguity;
-Speeding up reading;
-Improving comprehension for people whose first language is not the language of the document at hand;
-Improving comprehension for people with different domain or application background;
-Making human translation and localization easier, faster and more cost effective;
-Computer-assisted translation and machine translation.

In addition these general rules and principles constitute a systematic approach that can make cross-language and cross-domain applications of simplified natural languages more effective.

Since this is a liaison ballot, NISO can provide only a vote “recommendation” and comments. ALA is also permitted to nominate an expert to participate on the WG, if the project is approved. If anyone would like to nominate someone, please include the name and contact information in your comments to Cindy ( She can also provide the work item proposal to ALA members interested in providing comments. Cindy’s deadline for comments is Friday, Nov. 6, 2009.

Diane I. Hillmann
LITA Standards Coordinator