Re: Writing a proposal for an unusual script: SignWriting

From: Stephen Slevinski (
Date: Sat Jun 12 2010 - 11:56:47 CDT

  • Next message: Stephen Slevinski: "Re: Writing a proposal for an unusual script: SignWriting"

    Curtis Clark wrote:
    > On 6/11/2010 2:08 PM, Mark E. Shoulson wrote:
    >> I should probably read up more about SignWriting before trying to
    >> answer, but (yes, that stupid "I should do X but...") I'm wondering
    >> if there might be ways to shoehorn things into Unicode's style anyway.
    >> One answer might be what was done for Western musical notation.
    > Another is the Plane 1 math alphabets, which can be used in ordinary
    > writing, but which are more common in formulas with a precise
    > 2-dimensional layout: again, a higher-level protocol (in this case,
    > MathML or TeX) is needed for full use. (One might even imagine a SignML.)

    There is already roundtrip mapping with Binary SignWriting between
    12-bit hexadecimal, UTF-8, and XML (called BSWML).

    The main problem with using a higher-level protocol is that is regulates
    SignWriting to a second class writing system.

    As an example, consider Wikipedia. Page names need to be written in the
    target language. Page names are supposed to be in UTF-8. Page names as
    XML would not be valid.

    Besides, I'm much rather parse characters with regular expressions than
    rely on XML. XML really is overkill when we are only dealing with 2
    types of structures: signs and punctuation.

    Here's an example for "hello world" in American Sign Language. Each of
    these is equivalent.

    12-bit Hexadecimal:
    0fb18738c39c4c04c618738c3934b94b020538c3924d14b32ef38c3924c949c 38838c392

    UTF-8 (plane 15):
    󽠁󽡒󽪔󽪘󽮫󽯃󽥷󽪒󽪞󽯁󽯕 󽠁󽢍󽪒󽪢󽯆󽯌󽢍󽪒󽪙󽮿󽮶󽤋󽪒󽪘󽯗󽮹󽧵󽪒󽪘󽯏󽮢 󽪎󽪒󽪘

    <sign lane="0">
      <sym x="-40" y="-16">󽡒󽪔󽪘</sym>
      <sym x="-18" y="2">󽥷󽪒󽪞</sym>
    <sign lane="0">
      <sym x="-13" y="-7">󽢍󽪒󽪢</sym>
      <sym x="-20" y="-29">󽢍󽪒󽪙</sym>
      <sym x="4" y="-26">󽤋󽪒󽪘</sym>
      <sym x="-4" y="-49">󽧵󽪒󽪘</sym>


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