[sword-devel] Alternate Versification

Jonathan Morgan jonmmorgan at gmail.com
Sat May 2 23:22:11 MST 2009

On Mon, Apr 27, 2009 at 7:38 PM, Kahunapule Michael Johnson
<kahunapule at mpj.cx> wrote:
> DM Smith wrote:
>> A good place for this would be:
>> www.crosswire.org/wiki/Alternate_Versification.
>> Just add a section that gives:
>> The name of the versification, the description of the versification
>> and the date that it was added to the SWORD engine.
> The number of versification schemes that must be supported is at least
> one greater than the number of pre-defined versification schemes that
> you come up with. If the versification schemes must each individually be
> added into the SWORD engine, and not just into the modules, there will
> be Bibles that you can't properly encode without upgrading the SWORD
> engine. Hasn't anyone considered a way to put the versification scheme
> entirely in the module, along with a recommended equivalent display in
> one or more reference versification schemes? Usually, differences aren't
> major, but the number of probable permutations is daunting when you
> consider the thousands of languages spoken on this planet. So, some sort
> of difference encoding might be an efficient way to do things. For
> example, in some schemes, the Hebrew Title of a Psalm is verse 1, and
> the first actual verse of the psalm is 2, etc.-- a constant offset of
> just one for Psalms with titles. Then there are verse bridges (not
> technically another versification scheme, but related in the way they
> are handled), as well as those pesky moved paragraphs, one verse counted
> as two or vise versa, etc. I'm guessing that if you think you have all
> of the versification schemes enumerated, a different one will come
> along, and not because of any heretical work, either.

I agree that static v11ns are unlikely to cover every possibility that
you want, but equally module specific ones make a lot of things harder
(apart from anything else knowing when a module v11n is "the same" and
how it should be mapped to another module's v11n).  Many of the
differences are so minor that having a completely different
versification differing in a few verses doesn't really make sense (at
a worse case leading to versification's like
"KJV_with_added_verses_for_module_X").  Probably what makes more sense
is to allow a module to specify its differences .  These differences
could be specified in a way that supported mapping these changes to
the original v11n's verses, which then means you can immediately
support a mapping from the module's verses to any other module's
verses, by mapping to the base v11n and then using the mapping from
there.  Not necessarily lossless in every conceivable case (and
probably kills the nice generic offset system without module specific
tables), but it does at least make a simple thing (like adding in a
verse because the translator decided to split it) simple.  osis2mod
could even generate such a mapping for the module creator
automatically if you really wanted to (though it could only tell you
which verses had been added, not what they mapped to).


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