Hello to all...I'm new to this list...

Valerie Sutton sutton at SIGNWRITING.ORG
Thu Jul 21 07:01:12 UTC 2005

SignWriting List
July 20, 2005

Dear Adam!
Many thanks for this great message below...I am sorry I did not get  
to answering sooner...I have been very nervous over setting up the  
videophone to Brussels, Belgium...let us cross our fingers it will  
work in an hour...We have worked 6 months in planning the SignWriting  
Symposium taking place in Brussels in the next two days, so it is  
very exciting to think of all the people gathering there together  
right now!

> My name is Adam Paul Valerius, & I'm from Cincinnati, Ohio, United  
> States.

Happy to meet you, Adam!

> I have mostly normal hearing & vision, but I communicate most  
> comfortably when using tactile signing like the Deaf-Blind use.

This is so interesting! How did you learn tactile signing? I have  
very little knowledge of tactile signing...I am sorry about that. But  
I have watched some interpreting with Deaf Blind, and from a pure  
movement point of view, the movement of touching the hands would be  
written quite differently in SignWriting, than regular signing  
would...do you have a video clip of tactile signing we could look at,  
to see how the movements could be written?

> I've been fluent in Signed English for 8 1/2 years & fluent in ASL  
> for 4 years.


> Please DON'T mention family because I don't one due to having been  
> abused & neglected as a child & for the first 4 years of adulthood  
> (almost; I'm NOT yet 22).

I am sorry to hear about this...but I admire your strength! And you  
are still young...a good life ahead of you...smile...Maybe  
SignWriting will help, who knows!? If nothing more, it is a creative  
project and it helps me when I am not well...to have something to  

> I learned sign in the first place because I have extreme difficulty  
> expressing myself verbally (using words). I speak w/the same type  
> of speech impediment as the Deaf & Deaf-Blind who are able to  
> speak. Also, knowing sign helps ME equally as much as other  
> signers. My visual & tactile systems work well together, so I know  
> sign both visually & tactilely. If I lose my visual memory, I'll  
> still remember sign language because it's still in my tactile  
> memory, which I can't lose without getting some kind of seriously  
> debilitating disease or dying.

Wow...Isn't Sign Language wonderful? Beautiful languages...that is  
why I love to write them!

> I joined this list cuz I really like the idea of SignWriting.  
> SignWriting on a tactile mobile device would really help me.

Is a tactile mobile device different than other mobile devices? I am  
new to all mobile devices! ;-)

> I'll NEVER write English again once that technology is available.

SignWriting is not easy to program and I cannot imagine it being an  
immediate possibility...Would you be interested in learning how to  
add signs to our ASL dictionary on the web with software that is  
already developed? I would be glad to teach you how...Go to:

ASL SignPuddle

or you can download other software for SignWriting...go to...

SignWriting Downloads

> I understand some people may feel uncomfortable with it, but the  
> courts in the United States insist on writing everything down to  
> keep records of everything said, done, & ordered. If SignWriting  
> became widely used in the United States, & mobile devices could  
> translate between SW & English, no interpreters would be necessary.  
> Also, no signers would have to learn English, either, which would  
> enable physically Deaf & physically Deaf-Blind signers to remain  
> independent when telecommunicating WITHOUT knowing how to write  
> English words in a syntax that resembles their signing.

There are so many aspects to what you say above...It takes a long and  
complex answer...SignWriting itself is like an alphabet...the symbols  
can be used to write the movements of any signed language. But  
developing translating programs between two languages is a different  
issue, and a different kind of software...for example, just because  
we have a way to read and write French and English, does not mean  
that translation software is so good that we never have to learn the  
other language...translation software does not understand the grammar  
of signed languages well enough to eliminate the other language yet...

Having said that, have you tried the translation software for  
SignWriting, using English glosses?


Or send us an email written in SignWriting!

> I saw what some others said about "mainstream non-signers taking  
> over ASL". I DON'T believe the mainstream non-signers would take  
> over ASL. It's already a worldwide language with thousands of  
> dialects anyway, so how could they do more than just make their own  
> written dialect, just like they already have their own signed dialect?

I am so busy that I didn't even see that comment about  
mainstreaming...but I agree with you that there is nothing to worry  
about...languages change continually anyway...English is constantly  
changing too, so if ASL is influenced by this or that, that does not  
make it a bad language...it makes it a normal language! meanwhile we  
can write it, no matter what the dialect, and that is all that  
matters to me -

> Deaf people already know the difference between the way they sign  
> ASL & the way a hearing person signs it. That difference in dialect  
> is all I could think of that hearing people would do to it.

Sure. You are absolutely correct!

> Whatever y'all do, please DON'T express any anger towards me. In  
> Cincinnati, I seem to be the only person out of 740,000 people who  
> is smart, gentle, & emotionally stable. EVERYONE else seems to LOVE  
> aggression, irritability, & ignorance.

Grin! I would never be angry at anyone...so that will not happen. Our  
SignWriting List is about learning SignWriting. I can tell you are  
very very smart and I look forward to writing some ASL with you!

> I probably am developing sensorineural Deaf-Blindness cuz I had  
> surgery 4 years ago to correct a brain malformation I was born  
> with. I just haven't been to the neurologist yet. I've been  
> misdiagnosed with several mental illnesses & developmental  
> disabilties for my whole life due to emotional extremes resulting  
> from others' refusal to meet my communication needs.

I am sorry to hear this, Adam, but it is great you have joined the  
List and I think we all are communicating just fine together! So now,  
what sign in ASL would you like to write? I can show you how to add  
it to the online ASL dictionary...smile...

> Later,
> Adam Paul Valerius

We have two Adams who know ASL on the List now...Adam Frost and Adam  
Valerius...very nice!

Val ;-)

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