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Beider-Morse Phonetic Name Matching

Beider-Morse Phonetic Name Matching is an algorithm that emerged from a research project sponsored and funded by the Institute. It was developed by Alexander Beider and Stephen P. Morse to search name lists for names that are phonetically equivalent to the desired name. It is similar to a soundex search in that an exact spelling is not required. But unlike a soundex, it does not generate a large quantity of false hits. From the spelling of the name, an attempt is made to determine the language. Phonetic rules for that particular language are then applied to transliterate the name into a phonetic alphabet. If it is not possible to determine the language with a fair degree of certainty, generic phonetic rules are used instead. Finally, language-independent rules regarding such things as voiced and unvoiced consonants and vowels are applied to further insure the reliability of the matches.

Click here for a fuller description of this development written by Alexander Beider.