The simplest way for the user to choose a locale is to set the
environment variable LANG. This specifies a single locale to use
for all purposes. For example, a user could specify a hypothetical
locale named `espana-castellano' to use the standard conventions of
most of Spain.
The set of locales supported depends on the operating system you are
using, and so do their names. We can't make any promises about what
locales will exist, except for one standard locale called `C' or
`POSIX'. Later we will describe how to construct locales.
A user also has the option of specifying different locales for different
purposes—in effect, choosing a mixture of multiple locales.
For example, the user might specify the locale `espana-castellano'
for most purposes, but specify the locale `usa-english' for
currency formatting. This might make sense if the user is a
Spanish-speaking American, working in Spanish, but representing monetary
amounts in US dollars.
Note that both locales `espana-castellano' and `usa-english',
like all locales, would include conventions for all of the purposes to
which locales apply. However, the user can choose to use each locale
for a particular subset of those purposes.
Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License