Introduction to Locales

Locales encapsulate information about linguistic, cultural, and technological conventions and standards. Examples of information encapsulated by a locale include the symbol used for the decimal separator in numbers and the way dates are formatted. Locales are typically used to provide, format, and interpret information about and according to the user’s customs and preferences. They are frequently used in conjunction with formatters (see Data Formatting Guide for Core Foundation). Although you can use many locales, you usually use the one associated with the current user.

The operating system supplies data for dozens of different locales, regardless of which languages are installed.

Organization of This Document

The following articles explain what locales are, how they work, and common tasks you might perform with them: