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Re: a few MULE criticisms

From: Stephen J. Turnbull
Subject: Re: a few MULE criticisms
Date: Sat, 17 May 2003 16:32:37 +0900
User-agent: Gnus/5.1001 (Gnus v5.10.1) XEmacs/21.5 (carrot, linux)

>>>>> "Hin-Tak" == Hin-Tak Leung <address@hidden> writes:

    Hin-Tak> Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:

    >>>>>>> "Hin-Tak" == Hin-Tak Leung <address@hidden>
    >>>>>>> writes:

    Hin-Tak> The more popular methods tend to be ones in which the
    Hin-Tak> choices are narrowed down quickly and evenly as one more
    Hin-Tak> keystroke is added to the sequence.

    >> An explicit list would help.  Emacs could offer them in order
    >> of popularity, at least to the extent that they are available
    >> in free versions.

    Hin-Tak> That's a somewhat difficult task. I mentioned 4 major
    Hin-Tak> pronounciation/dialect systems (Mainland China, Taiwan,
    Hin-Tak> Hong Kong, Singapore); and unlike the Japanese

I'm aware that there's a huge variety, and that it's impossible to
give a definitive list.

But what's really different about the Japanese is that they won't
hesitate to answer such a question.  (Of course the educational system
and the Myth of Japanese Homogeneity is an important factor in the
willingness, but the important thing to the implementation is getting
an answer, for whatever reason.)  Usually the first such answer is
dead wrong, of course, but such lists are easily changed and easily
worked around or customized.  So by the time you've iterated over ten
Japanese, you're doing pretty well.

If you want, you can specify "where you're coming from" (in this case,
quite literally) and we can start to differentiate the Chinese
"sublocales".  And be greedy.  Ask for the list _you_ want.  If there
are more than a billion ethnic Chinese, I bet there are 100 million
who mostly agree with you.  Anything that makes 100 million people a
little happier with Emacs is a GoodThang[tm].  :-)  Note that one
effect of having an "official list" is that those who would want
something else will have something to point at and say "Gaak! that's
dead wrong!", and they'll offer their own lists.  Does that mean your
list goes away?  No, it means that to start with we add a customizable
variable like

Chinese Input Method Priority:
  [X] Leung's list (where you come from: im1, im2, im3, ...)
  [ ] Lee's list (Hong Kong: im3, im2, im1, ...)
  [ ] Custom list [..................................]

and then as we know more about how that correlates with other aspects
of Emacs usage, we start to build up the "sublocale" concept.

    Hin-Tak> The Chinese (ethnic) can't even agree on what constitutes
    Hin-Tak> the Big5 character set :-) - Big5 was a "convention" and
    Hin-Tak> there is a 5-10% difference between e.g. Hong Kong and
    Hin-Tak> Taiwan.  This is in contrast to the Japanese JIS level
    Hin-Tak> 1/level 2 sets, which are government controlled and
    Hin-Tak> revised centrally.

You mean the same Japanese who on the next to last major revision of
the standard still managed to leave out a couple of officially
recognized name characters?  Yes, the Chinese have bigger problems and
more various needs.  But localization is hard for everybody.  The
sooner we start, the better.

Institute of Policy and Planning Sciences     http://turnbull.sk.tsukuba.ac.jp
University of Tsukuba                    Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
               Ask not how you can "do" free software business;
              ask what your business can "do for" free software.

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