On 8/9/15 11:15 AM, Stefan Woehrmann wrote:

Hi Steve,


thank you very much for your detailed answer. Of course I am not able to understand anyhing of the software-secrets behind these developements but I will share your answer with our delegs team. ;-))


Hi Stefan,

I realize that I talk technical.  I appreciate everyone who takes the time to read my emails. I have sufficiently built up my foundation to show some great visuals.  3 years ago, I could talk about it, today I can show it.  We're improving all of the time.  Slowly to the future, step after step.

The software secrets are all contained in the SignWriting 2010 Javascript library (SW10JS).  It is self contained and less than 6 KB zipped.  If your development ever uses Javascript, you can shorten the development time significantly regarding visual display and advanced searching.

If you are using a language other than Javascript, you will need to recreate the SignWriting library functions.  I would suggest an open source license, but that is not required.  I have the SignWriting library available in PHP as the SignWriting Icon Server (SWIS), but it is a legacy server and contains many layers of conversions with older data formats and other loose ends.

In time, I hope that other programming languages will have a free and documented function library for Formal SignWriting.  In Javascript, SW10JS has the cleanest model focusing on Formal SignWriting.  In PHP, SWIS is backwards compatible with previous models.  Both libraries implement the advanced searching of Formal SignWriting.

Thanks for explaining to visualize FSW Data as SignWriting ... I checked it with the Rand-Keyboard.  Wow ..this is cool.

It is very cool.  Although Yair started with the SignWriting Thin Viewer, his keyboard has far outgrown my FSW viewer script.  The initial script was less than 3,000 characters long.
* http://swis.wmflabs.org/#thin

I am so excited for the Rand-Keyboard and for increased activity on Incubator for all sign languages.  I wrote about the Yair's keyboard development for the Wikipedia Signpost as a suggested story.  If anyone wants to help me polish the story, I'd appreciate it.


I see that you wrote my name sign.  This is the same way that Madson Barreto wrote it last year at the 2014 Symposium.  He wrote it by hand in the blink of an eye.  How long does it take to write with the Rand Keyboard?


Can you look for the meaning of a sign once you know the FSW Data of a sign?

Ah.  That is exactly the point.  You can search for FSW stings based on exact matches or approximate matches which meet a set of criteria.

This can best be seen through SignMaker 2015.  For searching, you need to load the correct dictionary.  I picked the ASL Dictionary with the English interface.

I copied my name sign above and pasted it into the FSW field on the dictionary tab.

If the FSW string is valid, it will be loaded into the SignBox.

Excellent.  Now open the search tab.  There are 6 options, but 2 are grayed out.

Any of the first four buttons will find my name sign in the SignPuddle dictionary.  It has been entered twice.  Very nice to be added.  Neither has a SignSpelling Sequence, so I will add that in SignMaker.

When my sign name is sortable, it is longer and looks like this.

The searching is powered by query strings.  After pressing one of the search buttons (Same Symbols is below), the appropriate query string will appear at the top of the green dictionary box.

If you can read query strings, then the above is searching for 3 exact symbol keys:  S33100, S20310, and S26b02.

Playing around, I found out that my name sign is the only ASL sign in SignPuddle that uses that exact movement arrow, but there are over 30 that use the same arrow with different rotations and different fills. Query string QS26buu.  With SignMaker, delete every symbol but the movement arrow and then press the search button "Base Symbols".

Thanks for informing me about the problems with SignMail.  I am sorry to hear that ..it has been such a neat way to exchange messges with my students. But we will find a workaround with screenshots and gifs  since it is so easy and no problem at all to create a message with the delegs Editor ... Thanks for your feedback.



Thank you Stefan.  I love to talk about SignWriting.  I realize that I deal with abstract concepts, but I'm happy to say that I've been stable for 3 1/2 years with no further disruptions planned.

There is a trail of historical formats before Formal SignWriting, but they are larger and more complex to process.  Searching in Formal SignWriting takes the blink of an eye. 

I'm happy that you and your classes have enjoyed SignMail.  It is on my list, but as part of SignPuddle 3.  I still need to get back to the new SignText based on SignMaker 2015.

I am so grateful that you have Delegs you can use in your classroom. What a great time to write signs!



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