SVG version of our IMWA symbols
chazzer3332000 at YAHOO.COM
Sun May 6 15:21:33 UTC 2007
Sandy, Valerie, and others.
I guess I like seeing the human figure there, as a programming expedient, to actually help us figure out which lines are actually used in which angles as we develop the ISWA. If you program those anatomically as signs becomes standardized, we can see by positions which ones help to clear up some movements (like the LIBRAS sign for mental confusion, which to me would possibly be much clearer if there were arms attached.)
If there were some way to put in the hands, move them around, and then, using the human figure you have there, click to put in the arms as a character in the full drawing in the arms that help clarify (as they are always there positionally), then for a full writing we' d have the arms, but the standard writing would have no arms except when something is a critical difference (like a shoulder shrug). It would also standardize all arm lengths as they'd all be working off of the same figure. The head and neck could also be pictured in grey, and then brought forward to black with a click of the mouse, or a special dead key highlighting them if you wanted that area to show in the finished sign (like one uses the neck for "gostar" in LIBRAS) or "thirsty" in ASL.
The only drawback I see is the Gaebardenschrift methodology for full-mouth articulation as a multiple overlapping head would not easily be possible using this method.
The point and click method has really helped with the SignMail as people can do full gestures that have no "single word definition" from ASL or other signed languages to spoken languages.
Valerie Sutton <signwriting at MAC.COM> wrote: 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
The IMWA means Movement Writing...to 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
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
know...so 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
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 rotation...like 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 -
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