Re: Keys. (derives from Re: Sequences of combining characters.)

From: William Overington (
Date: Thu Sep 26 2002 - 07:05:45 EDT

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    Marco Cimarosti asked about what key caps have to do with mark up or text

    My idea is as follows.

    A document would contain a sequence such as follows.

    U+2604 U+0302 U+20E3 12001 U+2460 London U+2604 U+0302 U+20E2

    This would have a meaning such as follows.

    It was a pleasure to welcome you to our stand at the recent exhibition in

    Please now consider the following sequence.

    U+2604 U+0302 U+20E3 12001 U+2460 Rome U+2604 U+0302 U+20E2

    This would have the following meaning.

    It was a pleasure to welcome you to our stand at the recent exhibition in

    This being because my published dictionary would state that sentence 12001
    within the Comet Circumflex system has one parameter and has the meaning as

    It was a pleasure to welcome you to our stand at the recent exhibition in

    The idea is based upon the telegraphic codes of days gone by, as used, in
    particular, on railway systems, except that this idea is for automated
    computer translation of preset sentences with one or more parameters. For
    example, someone in,say, Japan, who does not speak English (or does not
    speak it well enough to produce a professional quality translation) could
    communicate over the internet with someone in England who does not speak
    Japanese by using sentence C_C+12001 as above, provided that both sender and
    recipient have a dictionary for the Comet Circumflex system in his or her
    own language. The system needs the sender to encode the document. A
    recipient could, with an automated system, simply read the message in his or
    her own language. However, it will hopefully be possible to have a computer
    assisted encoding system whereby an end user may select sentences from topic
    areas and an encoded document be produced.

    In a computer system which does not have translation software installed, or
    has it installed but only uses it when specifically requested, the message
    would appear with a button at the start, provided that a font which carries
    the characters is being used. The message could then be translated, either
    automatically if translation software with a local database of C_C sentences
    in the local language is available, or manually from a dictionary of
    sentences. I expect that, whatever the potential for automation, to get
    started translations will be done manually. What languages will be used in
    early experiments will depend largely on whether any people who are fluent
    in a language other than English and can also translate from English into
    that language will want to try the system out, and thus upon whatever those
    languages happen to be. Ultimately, if no one is interested, I can get some
    translations done into a few languages by paying a professional bureau to do
    the work for me. However, the scope is there that the sentences could
    potentially be translated into many languages, both major languages and
    minority languages.

    Although I am preparing the sentences in English, it would not be necessary
    for either a sender or a recipient to know English, as, once the sentences
    have been translated once into their respective languages, then the code
    numbers could be used directly without using English in the sending and
    receiving of the messages.

    I have it in mind that I might author and publish, as shareware, a
    collection of sentences which could be used in business communications,
    hopefully gaining shareware royalties. For example, sentences making an
    enquiry about an item shown on someone's website, where the part number of
    the item is a parameter of the sentence. I am also interested in producing
    a set of sentences which might be useful in a distance education context. I
    am thinking of producing a few sentences asking about and commenting about
    the weather as a convenient way to experiment with a few sentences. For
    example, a sentence such as "It is raining." would not have a parameter, a
    sentence such as "The temperature in this room is P1 degrees Celsius." would
    have one parameter.

    There would clearly need to be lots of sentences encoded. However, I am
    hoping that meaningful communication will be possible with a collection of
    sentences which can be used with modern computing equipment.

    By using the U+2604 U+0302 U+20E3 sequence the system can be used within an
    email so that some special sentences are either translated manually or left
    in the original language. That, however, is only useful for one-to-one
    correspondence, for general publication of learning material only encoded
    sentences could be used, though that could, in conjunction with
    illustrations be potentially useful for some purposes.

    I am not envisaging doing any of the translation myself, as my linguistic
    knowledge is insufficient for professional quality translation work.

    Certainly, sentences for this Comet Circumflex system will need to be
    carefully designed so as to cover the needs of business communication
    without causing problems for a translation engine inserting parameters, so
    parameters will need to be either inert and not translated, or else
    translated in some parameterized form.

    Mr Cimarosti added the following.

    >Mr. Overington, why do you have this irresistible compulsion to mix up
    >apples and horses? (I feel that the usual "apples and oranges" is not
    >enough to convey the idea fully.)

    I like the phrase "apples and horses". I have not heard it before, is it
    your original?

    It has inspired me to write a song.

    I suppose that the answer to your question is that, if indeed it is a
    personality feature which can be described as you suggest, that it is
    because I am an inventor, interested in pushing the envelope as to what is
    possible scientifically and technologically. Sometimes such an approach is
    fruitless, yet at other times it can be very successful. In relation to the
    keys technique which I have suggested generally, and to the Comet Circumflex
    system in particular, whether these ideas will be successful or fruitless is
    something which cannot presently be determined.

    William Overington

    26 September 2002

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