Re: Quick Question About Korean Input Methods

From: verdy_p (
Date: Sun Jan 10 2010 - 14:02:58 CST

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    > De : "Curtis Clark"
    > > The real complexity does not seem to be within the separation of groups of vowels (unless Hangul is also used to
    > > write foreign diphtongs, without inserting any IEUNG between them), but in the separation of groups of
    > > like STR when they occur between vowels: it is not clear where the syllable break occurs, even if this does not
    > > change the rendering when using linear Hangul instead of presenting syllables in squares.
    > In Korean (according to my colleague), a syllable can end with two
    > consonants, but it can only ever begin with one. So the syllable break
    > can always be predicted accurately.

    If so, how can you translitterate common foreign names like Strasbourg ? S T / R A S / B U R ?
    i.e. with a vowel-less first syllable ? Isn't there cases where these two "syllables" collapse into a single Hnagul
    cluster (with multiple leading consonnants ?

    Yes I know that it is actually translated as "스트라스부르" (SIOS EU / TIEUT EU / RIEUL A / SIOS EU / PIEUP U / RIEUL
    EU, i.e. S Ə / T Ə / R A / S Ə / P U / R Ə ) but this is a surprizing transliteration as it adds "unnecesssary" EU
    vowels where they are not even needed, making it look like if it was "Seterasepur" (with a non geminated 's' in the

    Is the insertion of extra vowels 'EU' the Korean standard for writing foreign words, inscluding after a final
    consonnant (after the last RIEUL above)?

    If transliterating from French phonology (where it is written Strasbourg, with no double 's' like in German, and a
    mute final 'g') you would expect to enter STRASBUR in a Latin-based IME, but where the syllable breaks will break?
    According to your statement, it would break at ST-RAS-BUR, and the keys for B and P, or for R and L would produce
    the same Hanful jamo consonants the same (with just the initial/final consonnants infered).

    And doesn't Korean support a diacritic for making addionnal distinctions between voiced B and unvoiced P (as above),
    or between R and L, when they are important in foreign words such as proper names ?

    If the initial / final consonnant grouping is so universal, then why is this distinction even encoded ? You could
    just use the basic alphabet (and all clusters would be infered)... all that is needed is then to have a key for the
    mute consonnant (IEUNG) when a word starts by a vowel, and possibly the key for the "inserted" pseudo-vowel "EU"
    (treated like a short schwa ?).

    The distinctions between initial and final consonnants then becomes then superfluous (except esthetically when
    grouping letters into syllables, but this becomes exactly equivalent to the problem of hyphenating words in the
    Latin script). So the the Hangul composition square clusters would remain only by tradition in their typography...

    (And anyway there are lots of ressources in Korean that use the basic Jamo alphabet, without even encoding the
    syllabic breaks by a double encoding of consonnants, even if there are some difficulties to infer where clusters
    should be formed).

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