SWISS-FRENCH SignWriter Program

Valerie Sutton sutton at SIGNWRITING.ORG
Mon Mar 17 15:46:34 UTC 2003

SignWriting List
March 17, 2003

Dear SignWriting Listers, and Anne-Claude!
Thank you for your message below, Anne-Claude. Your group of teachers
will be the first to write Swiss-French Sign Language in SignWriting,
so that will be an exciting and new experience for all of you...I am
sure you can do it too...And I am happy to help.... ;-)

There are two SignWriting computer programs free for download on the

1. SignWriter DOS

2. SignBank 2002

Download the US version of SignWriter DOS, and download SignBank
Runtime (if you do not own FileMaker). Your group could start working
with both programs immediately.

Then, if your group can use the DOS program, I will be happy to create
a Swiss-French version of it free of charge. Send me the illustrations
of your fingerspelling and I can create the Swiss-French Fingerspelling
keyboard for you. When I am done, you will have a new version of
SignWriter DOS that opens in the French spoken language, but has the
Swiss-French fingerspelling keyboard, the Swiss-French alphabetic
keyboard (Switzerland types French differently than in France...some
alphabetic characters are on different keys), and an empty dictionary
file waiting for you to add your signs to the dictionary. You will be
able to switch back and forth between the US dictionary and your new
Swiss-French Dictionary, once I send you the new version.

Warning!....SignWriter DOS only works on Windows 95, 98, 98se, and ME.
It does NOT work on Windows NT, 2000 or XP. If you are using NT, 2000
or XP, you can run SignWriter DOS if you purchase a program called
Virtual PC (made specially for NT, 2000, or XP). If you are using a
Macintosh, there is a Virtual PC for the Mac too...I type in SignWriter
DOS daily on my I am quite spoiled by Virtual PC!! To
learn more about Virtual PC, go to:

Virtual PC

In summary, Anne-Claude, there is a mountain of free materials on our
web sites...Perhaps your teachers will want to start by reading some of
our literature online, printing it, and then try to translate some of
those books from ASL to Swiss-French Sign Language...

Children's SignWriting Library

Best of luck with your project, and please send my regards to everyone
on your team -

Val ;-)
Sutton at


> Anne-Claude in Switzerland wrote:  I have a meeting on tuesday with
> the teachers of one of the deaf schools in the french speaking part of
> Switzerland (Fribourg) to try and define a project about using SW in
> the classes with the deaf kids... I already made a presentation last
> year but everyone was too busy and didn't have the energy to start
> anything new... even though they were all really interested! Ok... I
> just have questions about SignWriter and the possibility for you to
> develop a French-swiss version... What does it mean for you? how much
> time would you need to prepare such a thing ? How much money would you
> need to do it?... Is there a way to combine ASL and LSF (France)
> version which only have a few difference with the sign language used
> in the french speaking part or would you have to create a competely
> new version? Let me know if anything like this would be possible and
> when... Just in case the teachers want to go on with it... I'm sure
> they are going to ask me about it... so I ask you first to make sure I
> don't give them too much hope and then don't have a way to do anything
> with them...I thank you in advance for your quick answer...Take good
> care, Anne-Claude
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