When writing a document in SW...

Valerie Sutton signwriting at MAC.COM
Tue Aug 22 13:11:15 UTC 2006

SignWriting List
August 22, 2006

Hello James -
Have you ever tried to write in vertical columns with SignText? I  
understand that writing from left to right is what you are used to,  
and there is nothing wrong with that, but it would be good to try the  
new vertical way too...just a thought ;-)

Change is hard for everyone...but it happens despite us!

And the vertical writing with Lanes is one change that has improved  
the writing of sign language grammar and that is important I  
think...so it is a change for the better...

Val ;-)


On Aug 21, 2006, at 7:42 PM, James Shepard-Kegl, Esq. wrote:

> I can see that spatial comparisons and role shifting are apples and  
> oranges,
> and I did not mean to suggest that the two concepts (or topic  
> marking and
> role shifting) were synonymous -- far from it.
> Sometimes, I just use a particular symbol to convey a particular  
> grammatical
> concept.  SignWriting utilizes a transparent system almost all of  
> the time,
> but that is a rule that I think need not be honored in every instance.
> Punctuation depends upon a code which the reader simply has to  
> know, and if
> not obvious, then someone has to teach its significance.  Well, I am
> thinking there is no harm in that, especially if one is wedded to  
> horizontal
> writing, as I seem to be.
> -- James
> on 8/21/06 9:36 PM, Valerie Sutton at sutton at signwriting.org wrote
>> SignWriting List
>> August 21, 2006
>> Hi James -
>> James Shepard-Kegl, Esq. wrote:
>>> "Lanes", eh?  As in "topic markers" and "role shifting", I reckon.
>> No. Lanes is a SignWriting term for writing Spatial Comparisons (or
>> whatever other name it might be called), but that is actually not
>> role shifting...it is comparing one thing on the left with the other
>> thing on the right...but you are not changing roles...just comparing
>> one item with another...and when people do these comparisons in Sign
>> Language, they shift their weight a little to one side of
>> center...their whole upper body shifts a little to the left or
>> right..not necessarily twisting, but just upper-body-shifting...this
>> cannot be written properly in either SignWriter DOS or SignWriter
>> Java because writing from left to right, horizontally, weight-
>> shifting is not easy to write or read...just placing the hands on the
>> left or right of the shoulders is not enough to show the shifting of
>> weight...Vertical lanes provide this weight shifting information and
>> are easy to read...I explained it to Judy when she was here  
>> earlier...
>> You can read about Lanes in this Grammar document below:
>> Writing in Lanes
>> http://www.signwriting.org/lessons/grammar/vertical/vert004.html
>>> There is a symbol for that, or at least, a symbol that I use for
>>> that (arrow
>>> showing twist of the torso to the left or right, as applicable), as
>>> role
>>> shifting is critical and must be conveyed.  In this way, I can
>>> write left to
>>> right, although this would work vertically just as well.
>> That arrow is for a twisting torso, but it does not show the whole
>> upper body adjusting itself to the left or right of center. A
>> twisting arrow does show the torso twisting to one side or the other,
>> but not shifting its weight to one side or the other...So technically
>> you could have a twisting of the torso, but still have the whole body
>> over in the left lane or right lane...so those are two different
>> things...
>>> Snag it works with SignWriter Java, which gives me the white
>>> background.
>> Great. I am so glad you have tools that work for you!
>> Did Judy show you SignText with Lanes?
>> Val ;-)

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