Re: alphabetizing

From: Jan L.H. Krans (
Date: Wed May 10 2000 - 06:15:07 EDT

I was already working on an idea for alphabetizing Greek, when I read Byron
Knutson's posting with his two Excel functions (BASIC).

For clarity's sake, let me explain the basic steps (sorry Byron):
1. Make sure your Greek words are in a column;
2. Create (p.e. next to it) an auxiliary column, in which you put for each
Greek word a well chosen substitution that can be alphabetized by the
program's standard routine;
3. Do the sorting based on the additional column you created, et voilá!;
4. Delete the extra column, if you wish.

It's a way of telling the ever obedient program explicitly how the Greek
should be alphabetized.

Byron's functions take care of the second step. I've adopted the first
function for Jimmy Adair's SPIonic, as follows:

greekalpha$ = "abgdezhqiklmncoprstufxywv"
engalpha$ = "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxs"

This also solves the problem with the final sigma. I deleted the extra
subroutine for it, which is superfluous now. Accents etc. disappear

With a little additional programming, the same procedure could be made
working for Hebrew, Coptic etc.

The problem, of course, is that it's not a program-independent solution,
but the idea could be worked out elsewhere fairly easily, I guess. It also
has to be done separately for each font with a different encoding scheme.
Well-known problems indeed...

Jan Krans, Free University, Amsterdam

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