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Old 20th January 2010, 07:24 PM
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Smile A Chinese keyboard!

This is only the beginning as a new expansion of top level domains, including non-Latin characters, hits web browsers world-wide.


After several years of lobbying by national network centers that were ready to implement IDN top level domains, the ICANN Board at ICANN's 36th meeting in Seoul, South Korea, last October accepted the "fast track process" whereby those national network administrators who were ready to implement could begin to do it through ICANN. Zhang says that on the first day of the process CNNIC had already submitted the ‘.中国' request on behalf of China to ICANN but that they "still need to go through the evaluation and delegation processes."



CNNIC has applied for China's ccTLD to be the characters for China in both traditional and simplified script. The particulars of the input method devised for Chinese characters has meant that any Chinese speaker who wishes to write in Chinese will have had to first at least master the Latin script (if not the actual English language) because the Latin script is the most common input method for Chinese characters. This differentiation with other alphabet systems (Arabic, Russian, Devanagari, etc) is significant because while Arabic, Russian or Indian users have their own keyboards with their own alphabets, the sheer diversity of the Chinese pictographic writing system has prevented the development of a "Chinese keyboard" in the way these other languages have developed theirs.



The question inevitably arises of how the IDN will alter the culture of the Internet. Paul Mockapetris, who invented the Domain Name System in the early 1980s has said that IDNs are "a huge opportunity for balkanizing the Internet or uniting it – we'll know which way it goes in about ten years. "



Like it or not, IDN's will soon be an indelible part of the internet. Conservative companies content with the market shares they currently hold will most certainly see these new domains and languages as thorns in their side. While more entrepreneurial companies will see IDN's for what they are: a chance to use the internet to reach previously unconnected customers. Which category Baidu fits into remains to be seen.

http://www.cibmagazine.com.cn/Featur...main_game.html

Last edited by blastfromthepast; 20th January 2010 at 07:26 PM..
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Old 20th January 2010, 09:57 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

I am afraid what the US accepts as Journalism is diagnosed as Incontinence in more enlightened realms.
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Old 20th January 2010, 10:17 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

The IDN keyboard people must be doing a lot of business in China.

Last edited by blastfromthepast; 20th January 2010 at 10:18 PM..
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Old 20th January 2010, 10:21 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

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Old 20th January 2010, 10:24 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!



http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...%3Den%26um%3D1

I found some stickers on ebay that let you turn a normal keyboard into a Chinese keyboard. My intention was to learn the Wubi layout, but as it turns out these stickers are for a traditional character input. While they make my laptop look totally pimped out, I don’t think they are useful to someone learning Mandarin / simplified.

My teacher says the pīnyīn system is usually the best input system for English beginners anyway.

If you are learning Mandarin / simplified, the stickers will not really help you, but it does make your laptop look really cool. The stickers are only a couple dollars so if you are into putting stickers on your laptop, they are worth a look. Here are some tips for putting them on.

* When you’re pulling the stickers off the sheet use some tweezers, and grab them from one of the top corners. It makes it easier to get them centered on the keys before you press the sticker on. For reference, here is what the stickers look like (my apologies or the bad picture).

Stickers

*

In the picture you can (hopefully) see that it says what keys the stickers should go on. Double check the key; the order of your keyboard keys might not be the same as on the sheet.
*

I put the stickers on my laptop. With a laptop, there is an extra bit on the the numlock keys that shows what the keys do when the numlock key is pressed. This conflicts with the stickers. The stickers use that space to display the characters. At first, I tried to scrape off the numlock items with a razor blade, but it started putting grooves in the keys. I could feel the grooves with my fingers when I typed, and it was annoying. The best way I found to remove the numlock items is to just color over them with a sharpie.
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Old 20th January 2010, 10:24 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

That one is no good for the other 46,960 characters. It only types 30 x 2 characters.
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Old 20th January 2010, 10:27 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

That impression is caused by total ignorance of how the characters are related. This keyboard will generate anyone of the 50K characters in 5 keystokes or less.

Chinese can achieve at least 160 words a minute on this keyboard. Can you do that in English?
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Old 20th January 2010, 10:30 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

I think the bigger issue is that this is being published in the magazine CHINA INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS, hosted on a .CN domain. Shouldn't they know better?

Last edited by blastfromthepast; 20th January 2010 at 10:31 PM..
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Old 20th January 2010, 10:32 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

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Originally Posted by blastfromthepast View Post
I think the bigger issue is that this is being published in the magazine CHINA INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS, hosted on a .CN domain. Shouldn't they know better?
Yes, and you can see how the artificial barriers to trade come into play. I cannot, however, understand why it is the Americans that insist on erecting them.
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Old 20th January 2010, 10:33 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

For someone who bills himself as a "language junkie"…
Quote:
Sebastian Cohen is a language junkie. He is currently getting his fix in Beijing.
http://www.gelfmagazine.com/contribu...tian_cohen.php
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Old 22nd January 2010, 05:14 AM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck View Post

... My intention was to learn the Wubi layout, ...

My teacher says the pīnyīn system is usually the best input system for English beginners anyway.

....
chinese is hard.

to use pinyin input, one needs to know how a character is pronounced, one then gets the best-guess plus a pull-down list from which to pick the correct one if the best-guess turns out to be wrong. obviously, one still needs to have at least some vague idea of what that character looks like.

randomly picking the character for gold, 金 , for example, its pronunciation "jin4" has 24 choices in standard windows ime with 11 of them commonly encountered: 金今禁津巾斤筋襟浸矜觔.

using wubi or canjie input, since one is basically constructing each character by its parts, one has to know (almost) exactly how that character is written.

because with wubi and canjie, one is precisely specifying the actual character, it is true that in theory, with a lot of practice (wubi and canjie input are a lot harder to learn than pinyin input), a person who speaks and writes chinese well can be more productive with wubi or canjie than with pinyin.

chinese pronunciation is difficult for non-chinese speakers because of its "tones" (the same pronunciation can have up to 5 different tones and thus 5 different sounds that non-chinese-speakers do not recognize as different sounds).

but that is nothing compared to learning how to write chinese.

chinese is very hard.


amy cheng

p.s. some interesting reading http://pinyin.info/readings/texts/moser.html
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Old 22nd January 2010, 08:45 AM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

Are they using voice recognition at all?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmyCheng View Post
chinese is hard.

to use pinyin input, one needs to know how a character is pronounced, one then gets the best-guess plus a pull-down list from which to pick the correct one if the best-guess turns out to be wrong. obviously, one still needs to have at least some vague idea of what that character looks like.

randomly picking the character for gold, 金 , for example, its pronunciation "jin4" has 24 choices in standard windows ime with 11 of them commonly encountered: 金今禁津巾斤筋襟浸矜觔.

using wubi or canjie input, since one is basically constructing each character by its parts, one has to know (almost) exactly how that character is written.

because with wubi and canjie, one is precisely specifying the actual character, it is true that in theory, with a lot of practice (wubi and canjie input are a lot harder to learn than pinyin input), a person who speaks and writes chinese well can be more productive with wubi or canjie than with pinyin.

chinese pronunciation is difficult for non-chinese speakers because of its "tones" (the same pronunciation can have up to 5 different tones and thus 5 different sounds that non-chinese-speakers do not recognize as different sounds).

but that is nothing compared to learning how to write chinese.

chinese is very hard.


amy cheng

p.s. some interesting reading http://pinyin.info/readings/texts/moser.html
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Old 22nd January 2010, 09:02 AM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

I've been using sougou pinyin, and it's super easy to use and supports initials, e.g. wxhn -> becomes 'i like you'. pinyin is wo-xi-huan-ni

The popular gongsi that most old timers here can recognize is simply 'gs'.

So you don't actually need to know the tone in order to type. Typing chinese using pinyin is easier than speaking chinese, let alone write.



Quote:
Originally Posted by AmyCheng View Post
chinese is hard.

to use pinyin input, one needs to know how a character is pronounced, one then gets the best-guess plus a pull-down list from which to pick the correct one if the best-guess turns out to be wrong. obviously, one still needs to have at least some vague idea of what that character looks like.

Last edited by touchring; 22nd January 2010 at 09:03 AM..
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Old 23rd January 2010, 05:23 AM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubber Duck View Post
Are they using voice recognition at all?
there is voice-input software.

although i have not tried any chinese voice-input yet, i suspect that it would be the most efficient input method for me personally.

voice-input would be particularly desirable for creative writing, because one would be able to narrate a thought in its entirety, then correct the mis-guessed characters after the whole composition is completed.

chinese keyboard input is difficult for creative writing, where one constantly tries to be different and unique in both style and phrasing, instead of accepting predefined words/phrases the software is offering, or even something previously user-defined.

so one ends up constantly correcting the guess/offer and there goes the thought (not that the thought is that outstanding to start with in my case ;-).

maybe that is why elegant writing seems rare on the net in chinese compared to in english; people either seem brief and coarse, or they sound like one another (accepting the same "offer"?)

potential problems for voice-input
1. one needs to be able to consistently differentiate the 5 tones (this is mainly an issue for non-native speakers),
i would assume the tones do not have to be accurate (you can train the software to recognize "your" tones), but they do need to be distinct and consistent.
2. one needs to be able to enunciate the different sounds.
for some chinese who grew up speaking a southern dialect instead of mandarin, they pronounce the mandarin pinyin sounds "shi" and "si" both as "si" (similar to the stereotype joke how a japanese may not be able to enunciate "fry" and "fly" differently). for them the voice-input may present a challenge.


amy cheng

Last edited by AmyCheng; 23rd January 2010 at 05:40 AM..
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Old 23rd January 2010, 05:35 AM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

Quote:
Originally Posted by touchring View Post
I've been using sougou pinyin, and it's super easy to use ...
if you already speak and write chinese well.
for a non-native-chinese speaker, the difficulties are in learning the language at the first place.

maybe i shall give the freeware sougou pinyin a try someday, but on the other hand, the dumb old Windows ime is less likely to be watching over me...


amy cheng

Last edited by AmyCheng; 23rd January 2010 at 05:41 AM..
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Old 23rd January 2010, 05:36 AM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmyCheng View Post
maybe that is why elegant writing seems rare on the net in chinese compared to in english; people either seem brief and coarse, or they sound like one another (accepting the same "offer"?)
With its minimalist and sparse approach, maybe Chinese would have been better off using Classical Chinese online — and for domain names.
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Old 23rd January 2010, 11:02 PM
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Re: A Chinese keyboard!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blastfromthepast View Post
With its minimalist and sparse approach, maybe Chinese would have been better off using Classical Chinese online — and for domain names.


suits me.

i am one of the few scarce specimens left who can still write classical chinese; but then, why write if only oneself and a dozen others can understand what one has written?

amy cheng
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