[Sw-l] Report from Steve's desk

Stephen E Slevinski Jr slevin at SIGNPUDDLE.NET
Sat Aug 8 23:08:14 UTC 2015

On 8/1/15 9:58 AM, Stefan Wöhrmann wrote:
> Hi Steve,
Hi Stefan,

Sorry for the late reply.  I'm back from vacation now.
> As you already know I startet with the "Rand-Keyboard" Prensentation 
> ..and thanks to Yair`s kind support I am on my way to get more 
> familiar with that although there is still a long way to go to really 
> understand..smile
Hi Stefan,

I've appreciated all of your comments and investigations of the Rand 
keyboard.  It is a very important development.  I was able to reference 
the keyboard several times when I presented to the Unicode Technical 
Committee a week and a half ago.

Your perspective and creations are appreciated.

> My question to you about FSW:
> M558x548S30a00482x482S14c21473x522S14c20535x482S28909509x511S33e00482x482 
> 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 
> S38700463x496 
> M523x558S20500513x543S18011487x528S31400482x482S33f10490x502S18019489x538 
> S38700463x496 
> M535x567S34800482x488S31400482x488S10043505x533S20500495x556S30120482x477 
> M588x519S36500437x482S34c00466x482S34800497x482S36100527x483S30007527x483S10011560x489S22a07568x476S2f900577x467 
> M543x532S36e00477x520S37803513x477S15a12487x472S15d1a484x453S37803453x496S3770b521x503S3780b454x466S31400482x482S33e10493x503 
> S38700463x496 
> M542x538S33e00482x482S15d20520x511S26600526x475S2f900527x463S31400482x482 
> M572x603S14c40466x525S14c48443x539S2fb04468x595S2e74c451x578S30a00446x482S34000446x482S2e700475x564S34c00519x482S11511545x501S20e00554x536S22f04547x555 
> M561x557S14c01518x530S14c09456x530S26506546x538S26512436x534S36e00477x519S30a00483x482S34010493x505 
> M527x577S33100482x483S20311503x498S23003501x520S37906476x575 
> S38800464x496 
> M555x537S33e00482x483S10001509x507S10009468x507S21100522x498S21100465x498S28807535x501S2881f445x498S30a00482x483
>  As far as I understand ...Your development of FSW - Data allows 
> people in the future to post messages written in SignWriting on any 
> (??) website on the Internet once the Unicode symbols are ...what?

Unicode is not a magic bullet, but Unicode is the world standard.  It is 
best to use a Unicode solution for your characters.   Formal SignWriting 
is a Unicode string that has been stable for 3 1/2 years.  You can use 
Formal SignWriting on any website today with varying degrees of work.  
The Rand Keyboard has a built in viewer that can be used on most websites.

As far as I know, there is no workable alternative to Formal 
SignWriting.  Some people still use an XML solution, but I wouldn't 
advice new projects to use XML for SignWriting, unless it's SVG.

I recently argued against the Unicode 8 release.

> People do not longer have to open these documents in a special 
> SignWriting Program but can look at nicely presented SignWriting 
> notations.  Is that correct?
That is the ultimate promise of Unicode, but not quite.

In theory, I have been promised a bi-directional conversion from the 
Formal SignWriting of today into a Unicode solution of the future. That 
means that all of our current data would be compatible, but not quite.

Formal SignWriting correctly allows for the freeform positioning of 
symbols.  The user picks the position of the symbols.  This design 
feature has some frustrations, but the advantages far outweigh the cost.

A future Unicode design of SignWriting may not allow the freeform 
positioning of symbols.  People have talked about this for years. The 
idea is that a complex font will handle what the sign looks like.  This 
will allow for people with different fonts to share the same data and 
have the signs look different, but reasonable to the viewer.  I have 
been a skeptic of this approach from the start.

So the Unicode process is resetting I hope.  Some people are going to 
try a future Unicode design.  Others will investigate my 2 Unicode 
proposals.  We are several years away from anything useful in Unicode.

> I personally like the freedom to create documents with different 
> workflows ...So to type directly with the "Rand-Keyboard" would be 
> fun. On the other hand I do have a lot of practice and therefore this 
> method is pretty effective, I look for a program that "translates" 
> search-words by SignWriting-Entries

I appreciate different workflows as well.  Whether it's the keyboard or 
mouse, whether you search by spoken language or you search by sign 
language with symbols, locations, and orders; the important part is to 

I especially appreciate writing fast and touch-typing in particular.  I 
would love to have a touch-typing manual for the Rand-Keyboard.  The 
manual should be repetitive and thorough.  After several weeks of 
drills, muscle memory would start to develop.

> ...and look whether YOU  opened the option to copy the FSW data.
> Can you please explain..what are the methods at the moment to get this 
> kind of Data?
> As far as I know:
> 1) "Rand-Keyboard"
> 2) SignMaker 2015
> 3) SignPuddle   (Dictionary)
> M602x606S2d320454x528S35000398x484S20300437x548S20300433x565S37806403x573S37806452x556S34700428x484S36100458x484S35d04505x482S34c00535x482S33b00566x482S10011558x576S10019534x576S10031558x533S10039531x533S2d606578x559S2d61e515x561
> 4) SignPuddle Literature Dictionary   (love that !!)
> AS1eb20S15a37S26a07S20e00M527x522S15a37473x483S1eb20486x503S20e00498x492S26a07506x477 
> AS18720S18720S2d606S2d61eS20300S20300S2fb00M526x540S18720504x511S18720479x511S2d606504x484S2d61e474x485S2fb00492x478S20300506x460S20300480x460 
> AS18040S18048S26500S2f900S36100M519x584S18040488x569S18048466x528S26500489x549S2f900491x541S36100482x482 
> M533x530S15a56506x493S14c52480x474S20e00491x501S26c00484x515S22522467x470
There is the ASL Wikipedia.  You can get FSW data from SignWriter 
Studio.  I believe Rachel Channon will have the FSW data available with 
the SignTyp linguistic coding system data set in the future.

I hope to see others soon.

One secret you may not know is that FSW data responds well to a double 
click.  This will select an entire sign.  You can either double-click 
the visible ASCII coding as above or you can double click the SVG in the 
newer FormalSignWriting applications. After you double click to select 
the sign (which may or not make a visible change), you can right-click 
(or press-and-hold) to access the sub-menu to copy the data.  This works 
in the new SignMaker 2015,  the SignWriting 2010 Javascript Library, and 
should work with the ASL Wikipedia and the Rand-keyboard. You'll have 
different levels of success based on the operating system and browser.
> Last question ..do not feel pushed...You think some time  the 
> wonderful  SignMail option will work again??
Smile.  SignMail.  Such a great idea, but such the wrong way I did it.  
SignMail is not compatible with the new servers and the enhanced 
security.  I have investigated SignMail for several hours and several 
days, trying to find a way to make it work.  I have been successful in 
the past, but this last time I lost the trail. Somewhere in the middle, 
the emails go poof.  I need to rebuild SignMail from the ground up.  
Unfortunately, it's a lower priority. Luckily, the newer tools are 
making development easier for myself or another programmer who decides 
to tackle the idea of SignMail.




Valerie Sutton
SignWriting List moderator
sutton at signwriting.org

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