Re: Unicode & Shorthand?

From: Philippe Verdy (
Date: Sat Sep 18 2004 - 20:42:09 CDT

  • Next message: Philippe Verdy: "Re: Unicode & Shorthand?"

    From: "Chris Jacobs" <>
    > ----- Original Message -----
    > From: "Christopher Fynn" <>
    > To: <>
    > Sent: Sunday, September 19, 2004 12:08 AM
    > Subject: Unicode & Shorthand?
    >> Is there any plan to include sets of shorthand (Pitman, Gregg etc.)
    >> symbols in Unicode? Or are they something which is specifically excluded?

    Pitman and Gregg are common in English-speaking countries, but most of these
    shorthand methods work well only with a particular language and are specific
    to it.

    Note that shorthand transcription is still not dead today, because of the
    natural speed of writing with it (more than 120 words/minute, instead of
    roughly 60 words/minute with stenotype or dactylography), and also because
    the quality of transcriptions from magnetic tapes or audio records is still
    highly discutable, notably when the audio environment is noisy (for
    juridical applications, it can be a big problem when one answer by a witness
    can't be understood clearly from the tape record).

    One solution used today (because stenographs become rare and old) is that
    the stenotypist or dactylograph that transcript a conversation must be
    present when the tape is created.

    > I don't know if it is excluded. A reason to exclude it would be if it were
    > a cipher of something already in.
    > The only set of shorthand I know something of, dutch Groote, follows the
    > pronounciation of the words rather than the spelling.
    > Can shorthand be seen as a cipher of IPA ?

    Not at all. Most shorthand do not reflect the same level of precision found
    in IPA, and the same sign represent several phonemes.

    See for example the wellknown French stenographie "Prévost-Delaunay method",
    with a small online presentation and initiation on
    In this method, most signs have multiple meanings, and there are
    abbreviations for phonemic elements commonly found at end of words, plus
    specialized signs for common semantics or words that are specific to the
    French language.

    It's not impossible to create a rendering system for such stenographic
    system, however the general layout is more complex than with traditional
    alphabets, because the layout of characters is highly dependant of the
    context of previous letters, and the system includes glyphic differences for
    initial, medial and final forms, and special joining rules that alter the
    glyph form, just to ease its fast transcription without holding up the
    drawing pen.

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