A very funny thing is happening to me: I am a subscriber of the UNICODE list
(about Unicode, a standard word-wide encoding of characters for computers)
and of the BRAILLE list (about giving help to Braille users) and, two or
three minutes ago, it looked like the two lists were talking together about
the same thing (the definition of what Braille is).
By the way, is seemed to me that the UNICODE list was answering a that
question I had asked to BRAILLE list... I have been quite puzzled for a
And the message by Jim Angerbrod on UNICODE list (that is quoted hereafter)
seems an aswer to the current topic on the BRAILLE list: not only Braille is
not a language per se, but it is not even correct to say that it is a
different way of writing English. Braille is actually a different way of
writing any language - potentially any language.
Maybe one could say that, originally, Braille was a different way of writing
FRENCH: the mother tongue of Louis Braille.
Regards to both lists!
Marco Cimarosti (Italy)
FROM UNICODE MAIL LIST:
> Tuesday, September 21, 1999
> The 1990 edition of 'World Braille Usage' (published by Unesco and the
> Library of Congress's National Library Service for the Blind and
> Physically Handicapped but now out of print) has Braille code assignments
> for the following scripts: Latin, Arabic, Cyrillic, Chinese (phoneitc
> see below), Greek, Devanagari, Gujarati, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, Kannada,
> Malayalam, Bengali, Oriya, Gumurkhi, Gaelic, Hebrew, Japan (kana) Korean,
> Sinhala and Thai. It is arranged by country and since several countries
> may use the same script several scripts are repeated, quite possibly
> without the the same code used for the same letter in all cases.
> The China (mandarin, pages 18-19) part assigns 18 codes for initial
> consonants, 34 codes for finals, 4 for tones and 6 for punctuation; total
> 62 codes. The Hong Kong (Cantonese, pages 30-31) part assigns has 19 codes
> for initials, 53 for finals, 8 for tones and 9 for punctuation: total 89.
> So there is some overlap in the latter--e.g., the same code (top
> four dots) is used for one sound (ligature nj (U+014B)) in initial and
> final position and for the same following a small turned 'a' (U+0250) in
> final poisiton. Two tones also have the same code--no dots.
> Don't ask me any more, I read neither Chinese nor Braille and this
> is, I admit, somewhat remote from Unicode.
> Jim Agenbroad ( jage@LOC.gov )
> The above are purely personal opinions, not necessarily the official
> views of any government or any agency of any.
> Phone: 202 707-9612; Fax: 202 707-0955; US mail: I.T.S. Dev.Gp.4, Library
> of Congress, 101 Independence Ave. SE, Washington, D.C. 20540-9334 U.S.A.
FROM BRAILLE MAIL LIST:
I was always under the impression that braille is a different way of
writing the ENGLISH language and is not a separate language. This
different from American Sign Language, which has it's own grammar
etc. Braille has the same grammatical rules as English, it is just
represented in a different way.
On 9/22/99, Margaret Tomasik wrote:
>I hope someone can help. Has anyone been able to get his or her
>award foreign language credit for braille? Virginia allows
>language credit for Sign Language. My school division allows
>credit for braille. I am teaching braille to a young man who is 18
>old with RP. He is a junior in high school and is seeking an
>diploma. His block schedule is full of higher level math and
>has had 2 credits of Spanish. For an advanced diploma he needs 3
>of Spanish or 2 credits of an additional language. If he could
>foreign language credit for braille, he could take another course
>instead of Spanish 3. Has anyone out there faced a similar
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