SVG version of our IMWA symbols

Valerie Sutton signwriting at MAC.COM
Sun May 6 14:45:06 UTC 2007

Hello Everyone...

Just a few other thoughts from me...I like your editor ideas too, Sandy!

And Sandy...I am sorry I thought you wanted to program Movement  
Writing...I misunderstood...

The IMWA means Movement me that means DanceWriting and  
Skateboard writing and Norwegian craftsmen swinging an axe!....

Let's work with the ISWA now...The International SignWriting  
Alphabet....SignWriting does have a Movement-Writing form for  
phonetic writing (which Kelly Jo eluded to yesterday regarding the  
enormous detail of writing the differences in fist tensions from  
signer to signer), and a more simplified form for Everyday Use....but  
there are still fewer symbols than in the IMWA...which includes  
skateboarding etc.

There are specific rules as to what is white in the symbols, and if I  
handle the new ISWA folders for you properly, this will be at least  
defined for you, when you create the SVG.

There is the complication that not all symbols need 96  
rotations...there are 8 Categories of symbols and each one's  
rotations are handled differently, if you are going to program those  
differences to get rid of the number of symbols...that programming  
was developed by Rich Gleaves for SignWriter DOS years ago as you that we could cut down on the number of symbols  
entered...he figured out all the ways things could flop and  
rotate...for example...faces work differently than hands etc...each  
Category has a different standard way of using Fills and Rotations on  
the grid...

But even with that fancy programming, there were still some symbols  
that did not fit those categories and still needed work...after 10  
years of programming SignWriter DOS...

And even if those glitches were fixed, we still have another  
problem...that some symbols look like each other, even though they  
are technically a different the plain square white  
palm...looks the same in several different rotations...

But those different rotations are important for sorting dictionaries  
properly, and so they must be there...

That problem was never solved either, in SignWriter DOS, because  
although Rich programmed all the flops and rotations properly, the  
typist could not see when they had chosen the wrong rotation because  
the two rotations looked the same...

Oddly enough that is NOT a problem with reading or writing  
SignWriting for the end user (the signer can read these fine because  
of other clues in the written sign)...but in programming, it is a  
problem because we need the correct ID number when sorting  
dictionaries by Sign-Symbol-Sequence....if we have a SignSpelling  
Column, like we do in both SignBank and SignPuddle, we can  
technically correct that problem before sorting, which is excellent  
for now...and thank goodness for the excellent SignSpelling features  
in SignPuddle 1.5!

Regarding the stick figure...

SignWriting only uses a full upper-body stick figure in its phonetic- 
Movement-Writing form...or when writing gesture that is related to  
signing but not a part of a formal signed language...

But for everyday writing of signed languages, we do not need very  
many arm lines, and slowly those can become standardized in size...

I will be working with creating the ISWA with all symbols in one  
folder, plus another folder with the symbols grouped by category,  
plus all the ISWA symbols in SignBank 8.5 which can be printed in a  
database to give you a notebook with every symbol to refer to....I  
hope to start this work at the end of this month...

I think the ISWA is a wise change...I am tired of seeing Skateboards  
in the SignWriting symbolset!

I am proud of our DanceWriting system, which can record full  
classical ballets under a musical score...but just as the Roman  
Alphabet does not record music, the SignWriting Alphabet does not  
need to include symbols for writing dance!

Someday I hope to really have this enormous writing system for all  
forms of human and animal and insect movement in a symbolset called  
the IMWA...but not in 2007!

Have a wonderful Sunday everyone -

Val ;-)

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