[CLS Framework]

TTT Homepage
CLS Framework
Section map
  ·Representation   ·Design
ISO 12620 data categories
XML information

Copyright © 2000
Translation Research Group
Send comments to comments@ttt.org
Last updated: January 27, 2001

MARTIF - Putting Complexity in Perspective

1. The MARTIF Conception

The creation of high-quality terminology is both time-consuming and cost-intensive. As a consequence, the community of terminology users has a vested interest in exchanging terminological data collections. Different user-group needs and organizational environments dictate, however, that the languages and information categories required by individual systems will vary considerably, which means that the structure of different terminology databases will also exhibit a great deal of diversity. This complication applies even in cases where the individual systems are themselves relatively simple. As a result, any exchange of terminological data between different systems becomes significantly more difficult than one might anticipate. In the past, these problems have made it necessary for exchange partners to create individual conversion programs to accommodate each exchange situation.

In order to facilitate more universal, less costly exchange of data collections containing concept-oriented terminology entries, the Machine-Readable Terminology Interchange Format (MARTIF) has been elaborated in ISO Final Draft International Standard (FDIS) 12200. The format relies heavily on the data category names and definitions contained in the companion standard ISO FDIS 12620, which essentially specifies data field names and related permissible instances that may be included as the contents of some data fields. MARTIF is based on Standard Generalized Markup Language (ISO 8879, SGML) and was originally developed in close cooperation with the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) and the Localisation Industry Standards Association (LISA). As an SGML-based solution, UARTIF has the additional advantage that terminological data can be easily processed like any other SGML documents, e.g., for the publication of printed terminological glossaries.

MARTIF not only provides open, flexible mechanism for exchanging data with other potential users employing different terminology management systems. It can also be used when companies need to change or upgrade software from one database format to another. Figure 1 shows an example of a MARTIF terminology interchange document. For the sake of readability, this example has retained standard German and French diacritics rather than adopting the SGML entities typically used in MARTIF, i.e., "Tür" for "Tür" or "contrôle" for "contrôle".

Contents Forward



| Return to ttt homepage | Introduction | Section map | Overview |
| Applications: Representation; Design; Sharing |
| ISO 12620 Data Categories | Downloads | XML info |