Charles Butler chazzer3 at EROLS.COM
Thu Jul 18 15:32:24 UTC 2002

Hi, Judy,

I was at DeafWay only on Wednesday and never did see your poster session.
My class was three escalators down at the Hilton hotel, but still managed to
draw over 100 people.  I sat in the two sessions prior which talked about
"sign language literature" as if videotape was the medium of a written
language.  Then a session on "sign language poetry" which tried to explain,
in English, the concepts of handshape, articulation, and parallel motion
with no diagrams and a lot of Excel files, but no graphics, and a videotape
that did not work.

My private poster session (I carried my posters around with me all day) was
well received.  Every Deaf person who looked at it could read it immediately
(and most had never seen Sign Writing before).

I think that if Deaf Way happens again, we may just have to be armed with
literature, have a booth, have TONS of sandwich board posters to become
walking exhibits, and simply be prepared to teach one-on-one.

I did see Marianne Stumpf and spent a little time with her.  She attended my
lecture (we had 3 people scheduled in one hour, one cancellation, so each of
us got 20 minutes to lecture and 20 minutes total for questions).

The one question we got about the "ease of writing" was "when will we have
the system available for normal transmission by email like any other written
language."  I was able to at least address that question by saying that
projects in Brazil and elsewhere are looking into "notepad" technology to
enable sign writing direct transmission.  Technology can now be our friend.

I did see a number of "videotape/computer" exhibits at the fair, and tried
to get some basic information from several of them about possibly
interfacing them with Sign Writing.  There was interest from the publishers
of several Sign Language textbooks when I made them a proposal to create a
supplement to their textbooks in Sign Writing.  Working with already
published works would show people the facility of the system using reference
works they already have in hand.

I'm going to try to put together a proposal for them, and try to build in a
cost component for transcription, or at least a royalty arrnangement if they
choose to publish and disseminate a SW supplement with their own literature.

Sorry I missed you, Judy, but SW was certainly presented.


----- Original Message -----
From: Judy A. Kegl <kegl at MAINE.RR.COM>
Sent: Thursday, July 18, 2002 10:58 AM
Subject: Re: DeafWay

> Barney Vega and I attracted a good audience for our SignWriting poster at
> the DeafWay II Convention in Washington last week.  (Claudia Avila from
> Condega gave a presentation on education in rural Nicaragua, but her tallk
> was cut from 45 minutes to a mere 13, and packed with six other presenters
> similarly constrained -- with no questions permitted -- so this was an
> of everyone's energy and time.)  In future, it's poster sessions for me
> everytime!
> We looked for Charles Butler, but never met...too bad, really.  Charles,
> were you there??
> You know, folks at some sessions were lamenting that ASL literature will
> lost to future generations because videotapes decay.  I sit there bemused
> when I hear this.  Here is a radical concept:  how about WRITING THE
> In science and academia, new ideas are denounced as impractical and
> then years later are accepted as obvious truths.
> -- James Shepard-Kegl

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