What is en_US ?

Timothy Murphy tim at birdsnest.maths.tcd.ie
Wed Jun 13 13:37:55 UTC 2007

I'd like to enter a small caveat
about the use of the description "en_US"
when there is no other version of English on offer,
eg when installing Fedora.

First of all, the difference between different variants of English
is negligible, in my opinion.
I never heard of anyone misunderstanding something
because it was in en_US rather than in en_GB.

Secondly, giving a variant name like this when there is no alternative
wastes a lot of time going up and down menus
to see if there is some alternative choice.

I know Americans spell a few words wrongly, but so what?
Plenty of people make spelling mistakes,
and it doesn't affect one's understanding in the slightest.

I tested a group of students some years ago,
to see if they knew whether a book was published in the US or the UK,
and none of them had the slightest idea.

Timothy Murphy  
e-mail (<80k only): tim /at/ birdsnest.maths.tcd.ie
tel: +353-86-2336090, +353-1-2842366
s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland

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