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Publication numberUS3665450 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 23, 1972
Filing dateJul 2, 1968
Priority dateJul 2, 1968
Publication numberUS 3665450 A, US 3665450A, US-A-3665450, US3665450 A, US3665450A
InventorsCarl Leban
Original AssigneeLeo Stanger, Carl Leban
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and means for encoding and decoding ideographic characters
US 3665450 A
Abstract
Chinese language characters are transcribed by assigning coded digits such as letters or numerals to define first the gross form of each character on the basis of the arrangement of sections in the character, then to define the shapes of elements in each section, then to define the relative juxtaposition and cross over and enclosure and size differentiation of elements within each section; and by ordering the digits on the basis of a predetermined sequence of element appearance within each section and on the basis of a predetermined sequence within sections. The thus transcribed characters can be numerically or alphabetically indexed. They can be used to select preset typing strokes that can be assembled into characters and thus form a Chinese language typewriter.
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United States Patent Leban [451 May 23,1972

[54] METHOD AND MEANS FOR ENCODING 3,422,419 1/1969 Mathews et a1 ..34o/324.1 AND DECODING IDEOGRAPHIC 3,325,802 6/1967 Bacon ....340/324.1 CTERS 3,325,786 6/1967 Shashoua et al. ..340/324.1 [72] Inventor: Carl Leban, Lawrence, Kans. m 5mmI-n, John w Caldwell [73] Assignee: Leo Stanger, Summit, N .J a part interest Assistant Exa'mner-c'len Swannm 22 Filed: July 2, 1968 I 57] ABS-ACT [21] P'' 742076 Chinese language characters are transcribed by assigning coded digits such as letters or numerals to define first the gross 1 Related Appliufion form of each character on the basis of the arrangement of sec- CQRIiHuafiOII-iH-Pan 0f NOV. tions in the character, then to define the shapes of elements in 1967, abandonedeach section, then to define the relative juxtaposition and I cross over and enclosure and size differentiation of elements [52] US. Cl. ..340/324 A, 95/4.5 J within each section; and by ordering the digits on the basis ofa [51] Int. Cl. ..G06k 15/20, B4Ib 19/04 predetermined sequence of element appcannce within each [58] Field of Search ..340/324 A; 178/20i 155; Section and on the basis of a predetermined sequence wnhin 9 l J sections. The thus transcribed characters can be numerically or alphabetically indexed. They can be used to select preset [56] References cued t in strokes that can be assembled into characters and thus YP 8 UNITED STATES PATENTS form a Chinese language typewriter. 3,335,416 8/1967 Hughes ..340 324.1 21 Claims, uni-swin Figures r "T o 1 I I I II KEYBOARD -12 I TRANSDUCER I .L

, p, b I I 1 13 1 l 5.1 CONSONANT VOWE L NUMERAL RESET MISC. I I m SIGNAL SIGNAL SIGNAL SIGNAL SIGNAL I GENERATOR GENERATOR 36 GENERATOR 3a GENERATOR GENERATOR I I 3 0 -42 I L; i" I I l I l I ELEMENT I I SELECTOR GENERATOR Ie 1| 44 I 52 1 46' ,46 I i I I POSITION AND SIZE COMPUTER I l I l I 50 I I H I H 1 I ll ELEMENT v TIME V TIMEESSZIIfiE POSITION I R gmgg I voLTAGE I FORMER I H g E' fS Q'S BIASING NETWORK I I V GATE SYSTEM I L I- M l 20 w I II PATENTEUHAY 2 3 I972 sum 02 or 12 Fig.

QIFTX+ I left slant horizontal left slant cross upper left corner lower left corner square step square zed left and right slant left over right dot square horizontal rectangle left dot left-right dotflanked vertical left angle left acute angle left curve counter-clockwise hook right slant vertical oblique cross right slant cross upper right corner lower right corner slant step slant zed right and left slant right over left dot full space square vertical rectangle right dot right-left dotflanked vertical angular "3" right acute angle right curve clockwise hook PATENTEUHAY 23 I972 sum 03 or 12 ght.

Clear vertical se May have more tha 460 Cl O0 Enclosed on three or four sides.

Clear separation of upper left and lower right.

Clear separation of upper right and lower left.

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Clear separation of lower left and upper right.

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May have more than two sections. Fig. 4c 3 Fig. 4d

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paarupy (paarup akgiombu-fiabakbuwbbufic. bafetu 4: bamepuqup g baneoffeub Ockequpqpu I Fig. 27 ma (pebetu kabobeub) FF naobabbu) E (bafeebakubitet)otet) V x X X PATENTEDMAY 23 I972 sum 11 or 12 Maw u m 2 0 N MU O EOD NBS N m HH S Y T F III w OPERATING NETWORK PRINTER OPERATING NETWORK PRINTER -FIG.46

OPERATING NETWORK MEMORY PRINTER MEMORY READOUT PATENTED MAY 2 126 FIG-47 l-m-1 EEEBEE- 130 jg @5128 3 -.'ERncAEPosmonER| I HORIZONTAL POSITIONER SIZE SELECTOR MOVER ELEMENT COUNTER ELEMENT SELECTOR \ms scANNER- 110 k 108 MEMORY INDEXER 136 we TRANSDUCER o 0 KEYBOARD Y O o o o o o o o F|G.48 L104 158 158 H158 a 15a GROSS FORM 1,0 INDICATOR g BOUNDARY ERASE 158 f I SECTION BOUNDARY CONSONANT REDUPLICATOR SPACER PRINT lvowEL V r I r r MEMORY COMPUTER -1s2 164 PRINTER METHOD AND MEANS FOR ENCODING AND DECODING IDEOGRAPHIC CHARACTERS REFERENCE TO COPENDING APPLICATIONS This is a continuation-in-part of the copending application Ser. No. 682,400 filed Nov. 13, 1967 and now abandoned. The contents of the Copending Application are herewith made a part of this application as if fully recited herein.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION This invention relates to transcribing ideographic characters, particularly Chinese language characters so they may be classified, indexed and rewritten. According to one aspect the invention relates to a typewriter for writing any or all of the approximately 50,000 existing Chinese language characters, as well as any yet to be created, with a simple keyboard.

The Chinese language and some other oriental languages are written in some 50,000 or so characters that comprise a number of strokes of varying sizes and positions within each character. This method of writing contrasts with other written languages such as English or other European languages which employ alphabets having a small number of digits or letters. Numbers of such letters of similar size are assembled and arranged in specific order within each word and follow each other sequentially in one specific direction such as left to right across the page. This sequence and directional arrangement of a small number of letters permits classifying the words on the basis'of the letters conventional locations in the alphabet, that is alphabetically. As a result, alphabetically written languages are amenable to type setting, typewriting, telegraphy, and/sorting through assembly and disassembly of the letters. On the other hand Chinese language characters are not readily disassembled or reassembled. Thus, until now no means have been found to obtain commensurate advantages for the Chinese language and its characters. The Chinese language for example uses atelegraphic code that consists of arbitrary dot and dash combinations, namely the international Morse Code for the Numbers through 9,999 for less than the 10,000 of the almost 50,000 characters in the Chinese language. Moreover, Chinese language texts, even important reference works, newspapers and periodicals, are indexed inadequately if at all. The eflicient use of modern data processing techniques has been substantially blocked by this problem. Attempts to remedy this situation have depended upon the application or modification of traditional analytic classification systems.

THE INVENTION According to a feature of the invention the aforesaid difficulties are overcome by assigning to each of a number of arbitrarily selected constituent elements of any character a machine compatible number or letter while assigning for each of a number of inherent positional relationships of the character another machine-compatible number or letter, and assembling the numbers or letters of the elements in predetermined order into code words. The numbers or letters used herein may be generically described as digits.

According to another feature of the invention the coding is simplified by adding digits to indicate each characters gross form.

According to yet another feature of the invention drawings; typewriter is obtained. Specifically an operator enters the code for any character into a storage device by means of a keyboard. Upon completion of such coding the storage device selects appropriate elements of which some thirty or so are stored in a writing apparatus, which are then written on appropriate portions of a paper.

These and other features of the invention are pointed out in the claims. Other objects and advantages of the invention will be understood from the following detailed description when read in light of the accompanying drawings FIG. 1 is a schematic diagram'illustrating an apparatus emboding features of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a chart illustrating the elements which the apparatus of FIG. 1 prints out separately; FIGS. 30 to 3e are diagrams illustrating progressive print out of the apparatus in FIG. 1 for particular inputs;

FIGS. 4a to 4g are charts illustrating gross forms of Chinese language characters which the apparatus of FIG. 1 recognizes and illustrating samples of characters conforming to each gross form;

FIGS. 5a 5j are charts illustrating other examples of the manner in which the apparatus of FIG. 1 recognizes the forms of FIGS. 4a to 43;

FIGS. 6a to 6d are charts illustrating forms which the apparatus of FIG. 1 recognizes as contiguous FIGS. 7a 7e are charts illustrating the juxtaposition of elements that the apparatus of FIG. 1 prints out in response to the shown inputs;

FIGS. 8a to 8g and 9a to 9d are diagrams illustrating progressively the print out of the apparatus of FIG. I for particular inputs;

FIGS. 10a and 1012 are charts illustrating characteristics of the elements of FIG. 2; 7

FIGS. 11 to 18 illustrate examples of characters printed out by the apparatusof FIG. 1 in response to the accompanying alphabetical inputs;

FIG. 18a is a schematic block diagram illustrating details of the apparatus in FIG. 1;

FIGS. 19 to 44 are examples of Chinese character printouts for the alphabetic or digitial inputs that accompany them;

FIGS. 45 and 46 are block diagrams of other systems embodying features of the invention, namely a transmitting system and an indexing system;

FIG. 47 is a partly schematic and partly pictorial block diagram of a Chinese language typewriter embodying features of the invention, and including and indexing mechanism also embodying features of the invention; and

FIG. 48 is a block diagram of still another typewriter embodying features of the invention.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS In FIG. 1 an input mechanism 10 corresponds to a conventional typewriter having a keyboard 12 and a platen 14. However, in FIG. I the keyboard includes a transducer 15 that transmits electrical signals corresponding to the letters being struck on the keyboard 12 to an electronic operating network 16. Each time the pairs of English language letters shown in FIG. 2 are struck on the keyboard the network 16 applies a pair of time-function voltages to the beam deflecting members of a cathode ray tube 18 in an optical printer 20 so as to produce an image corresponding to the 36 elements 22 illustrated in FIG. 2. Each element 22 represents a stroke or group of strokes of the written Chinese language. When properly reduced or magnified and juxtaposed these 36 elements form substantially all the Chinese language characters now in existence and yet to be developed.

FIG. 2 shows these 36 elements arranged in two columns. The general characteristics of the left column are left orientation, horizontality, orthogonality. The general characteristics of the right column are right orientation, verticality and slantness. Each element is represented by a consonant of the English language as indicated in the table. Those consonants in the left column precede a vowel. Those consonants in the right column follow a vowel. Each pair of elements is further paired to form a quartet of elements of similar form. Such quartets are represented by pairs of related consonants as follows:

p, b single straight lines r, d crossed lines g corners f, v paired slants or dots m, n rectangles c, j dots r angles x, h curves and hooks Voltages producing the same images corresponding to the 36 elements 22 illustrated in FIG. 2 are also available by striking for each letter a in FIG. 2 and other vowels such as e i or u. The operating network distinguishes between these vowels to apply direct current biasing potentials that position the images relative to one another on the face of tube 18.

Striking the vowel a in each element 22 FIG. 2 causes the operating network 16 to apply no direct biasing potentials if the element is the first element of a character being entered. If it is not the first, striking the vowel a causes network 16 to apply biasing potential which shifts the image being formed horizontally to the right and shifts the preceding element entered to the left so that the new element is adjacent to the right of the previous element. Striking the vowel e in an element which it and a consonant in FIG. 2 define creates biasing potentials that vertically position the image of the element below the immediately preceding entered element 22. The vowel 1' indicates an element contained in the left part of a previous element or displaced to the left of the vertical centerline of a structure being developed. Thus striking the key for this letter causes the network 16 to produce biasing voltages which shifts the image of the element to the left. In some cases, if the previous containing images are such as to contain only on their left, their corresponding voltages generate additional potentials to cancel this leftward shift of the i image.

The vowel o is struck by the operator as part of an element to indicate any element contained on the right of the previous element which was not a rectangle, or contained in any rectangle, or any element displaced to the right of the vertical centerline of the structure being written. Thus the operating network 16 creates voltages which shift the image on tube 18 to the right in response to the letter 0. If the previous element contains only on the rightor centrally, or is a rectangle, the network 16 does not shift the 0 image at all.

The vowel u indicates elements written over preceding elements. The network 16 biases the image forming voltages to place the element image over the previous element image or images.

The operating network 16 moreover has attenuating means which responds to the number of elements typed in each character to thereby attenuate the image producing voltages to produce their images within a square of the cathode ray tube 18. The attenuation for the first element entered is such as to cause it tofill the square. Dots such as defined by ac, ca, av, and va may vary only slightly in size and so occupy only a portion of the square. Thus if the letters ac were typed first, the image on the tube would appear as in FIG. 3a. lfthese letters were followed by he the image would be changed as shown in FIG. 3b. Again following these letters with be and be respectively produces the images of FIGS. 30 and 3d. FIG. 3e illustrates the result of adding the letters me to produce acbebebeme.

Chinese language characters may be divided into a small number of groups according to their gross morphology, that is their general shape. To simplify the operator's task the operating network 16 further biases the output signals so that the elements 22 of a character can be considered by the operator in groups and entered on the keyboard in groups. The operating network 16 distinguishes between seven such groups based on that number of arrangements of non-continguous portions of the character, called sections. The arrangements of sections are shown in FIGS. 4a to 4g. An operator precedes the entry of the first element 22 of a character by first entering a numeral which defines the characters gross form.

If all the elements are contiguous in the character so that it has only one section as shown bythe example in FIG. 4a the operator precedes the entry of elements by striking the key 1 on the keyboard. On the other hand if there exists a clear separation between right and left, regardless of how many portions there are, as shown by the examples in the gross form mode of FIG. 4b he presses the numeral key 2. For characters with a clear horizontal separation of top and bottom as shown in FIG. 40 he strikes the numeral 3. Where the character is enclosed on 3 or 4 sides as in FIG. 4d he strikes 4. For a clear separation of upper left and lower right, or lower left and upper right as shown in FIGS. 4e and 4f he strikes 5 or 6 respectively. For the configuration of FIG. 4g he strikes 7 on the keyboard.

However, because the seven arrangements of FIGS. 4a to 4 do not account for all possible forms, the operator arbitrarily responds to those not shown by striking the numeral 1. In cases where more than one arrangement of the sections shown may be possible, the operator strikes the lowest possible numeral.

In all these cases the operating network 16 responds by establishing biasing voltages on the beam deflecting elements of the tube 20 which confine element images to first the left section, or if there is no left section then the upper section, and after the operator enters an asterisk the right section or if there is no right section then the lower section.

Certain side by side entities when they occur alone are considered properly to be identified by the numeral 2. However, when they are combined with other forms as sections they are considered as if they were contiguous. These exceptions are shown in FIG. 5.

Contiguous structures are never split in determination of gross form numerals. Any structure is considered contiguous if any stroke necessarily or incidentally touches or crosses another stroke. Examples of such contiguous structures appear in FIG. 60. Any stnicture composed of a series of parallel lines, dots or curves with no intervening strokes such as shown in FIG. 6b are considered to be contiguous for the purposes of FIGS. 4a to 4g. Moreover a structure is contiguous if it consists of horizontal lines immediately above or below a rectangle. Examples of such contiguous'structures are shown in FIG. 6c. Other structures which are considered contiguous are ones with a dot immediately above any horizontal line or the horizontal portion of any element or structure including rectangles. This is shown in FIG. 6d.

Characters are typed on the keyboard with the defining section first followed by the remaining section or sections in order from upper left to lower right. The so-called defining sections of each of the gross forms in FIGS. 40 to 4g are shaded. They are the entire character in FIG. 4a, the left section in FIG. 4b, the upper section inFIG. 4c, the enclosing section in FIG. 4d, the upper left section in FIG. 4e, the upper right section in FIG. 4f, and the lower left section in FIG. 4g.

In entering characters in the'keyboard, the gross form nu meral corresponding to the arrangement of sections is written before the first element of the first section. After the numeral or number indicating gross form is entered and the operating network 16 establishes appropriate bias, the elements 22 of the character are typed. The elements 22 are entered from upper left to lower right, element by element, with upper taking priority over left and with the exceptions that containers precede the elements contained and over-writing elements follow the elements they over-write. Relative juxtaposition of elements is indicated by the vowel of the elemental syllable as illustrated in FIG. 7. FIG. 7 illustrates several pairs of elements with their appropriate alphabetic nomenclature and shows how the nomenclature follows the elements juxtaposition.

After the numeral, as each pair of letters is typed to represent an element 22 and its position, the operating network 16 again performs the image positioning functions illustrated in FIGS. 3a to 3e. However, if the pairs of letters follow the numerals 2 to 7 the operating network 16 first fills the square of FIGS. 3a to 3e. As each element is entered it compresses the prior elements and shifts their position to accommodate the newly entered element. When an asterisk marking a succeeding section is entered, the network 16 confines previously entered elements to the area of the respective defining section and and controls the beam deflecting potentials to confine the elements following the asterisk to the other section or sections of the character. The first vowel in each section is always 4, unless the first element is laterally displaced. Examples of this sequence appear in FIGS. 8a to 8f and 9a to 9d. Here the letters below each figure indicate the nomenclature entered and the image formed at each particular stage in forming the character. The elements which are basically dots, namely those defined by va, av, ca, and ac may vary only slightly in size and so occupy only a portion of the allotted space rather than a whole space when they start a sectron.

FIG. a and 10b tabulate the properties of all the elements. While most of these properties are inherent in the form of the respective elements some are arbitrary. Such arbitrary properties include mutant q-forms, containment function restricted to a portion of the element, crossover function restricted to a portion of the element and restricted juncture.

The column q in FIGS. 10a and 10b illustrate mutant forms for the elements on their lines. The network 16 responds to a q typed after typing of the elemental nomenclature by changing the image of that element on tube :18 to its mutant form. When a q follows the nomenclature of elements for which they are no q forms in FIGS. 10a and 10b the network 16 merely extends the image of the element on the tube 18 in length.

FIGS. 10a and 10b have a column of stroke counts, S/C. These values are available for automatic indexing of typed characters according to total stroke count when using a computer.

Most elements exhibit the property of containment, that is other elements may occasionally be written within their compass. The column headed Containment, in FIGS. 10a and 10b shows those elements possessing this property. The portions of those elements employed in this function are marked i and a.

In Chinese characters some elements possess the property of over-writing other elements. These are indicated in the typed nomenclature by the u-ablaut, that is the u variation, of the elemental vowel such as bu or ul. In FIGS. 10a and 10b the column headed u-ablaut shows those elements which function in this manner. Some of these function totally, that is, any part of the element may over-write other elements. Some elements possessing u-ablaut are restricted in this'function, with only part of the element over-writing other elements. Those parts are marked with a small circle in the illustration.

All elements possess the property of incidental juncture, that is they touch other elements at points determined by their respective forms and juxtaposition. Elements which do not touch are parallel elements or the parallel portions of elements, reduplicated elements or elements in reduplicated structures, and elements with intervening elemental space.

Four elements, the left and right slants, pa and up, the right dot ac, and the left acute angle ra also possess restricted juncture. The illustrations FIG. 10a and 10b under the heading called .hncture show that when an element pa or up is horizontally juxtaposed with the free horizontal portion of another element, or vertically juxtaposed with the free vertical portion of another element, that element touches the slant at midpoint. The effect is similar to oblique juxtaposition. The left acute angle ra, when juxtaposed below the left angle la, meets it at the mid-point of its own slant portion. The right dot ac meets the left and right acute angles and the slant step in the manner illustrated.

All q-forms, exhibit incidental juncture only.

The printer 20 possesses an optical system for focusing the image on tube 18 onto a photographic recorder 32. The latter shifts with each entry of a number 1 7 to a new space to start the image of a new character.

To use the typewriter, the operator first sets the recorder 32 to start with the first image. The defining section of any character is typed first, proceeding from upper left to lower right, one horizontal level at a time. Upper always takes priority over left except that containers precede the elements contained and over-writing elements follow the elements they over-write. Where ambiguity may arise, as in over-writing over only one other element, horizontal precedes vertical in the entries. The network 16 always evenly divides the space available for writing. The elements are evenly spaced within each level, and the various levels and columns are evenly spaced within the section or character. Symmetry and mirror image symmetry are obtained wherever possible.

Since typing proceeds from top to bottom, containment cannot occur from below, but is viewed as a process occuring at the same level as the container. The container is that element immediately preceeding the contained element regardless of the complexity of the structure. Elements within the container follow the usual juxtapositional rules but they are removed from the larger juxtapositional stream. Thus the element following the contained element is juxtaposed relative to the container preceding. No mark is made to show the containment terminal for a single contained element. Where such cases occur the absence of a marker indicates that only the ablauted element is contained. When more than one element is contained it is necessary to mark the terminal so that ambiguity of juxtaposition is avoided. The containment terminal marker, is entered immediately following the last contained element. The element following the closed parenthesis is juxtaposed relative to the container. Some examples occur in FIG. 11. The network 16 then varies the image accordingly.

Occasionally an operator encounters a container which is itself contained. In such cases he types according to the usual rules with the qualification that when more than one element is contained in the inner container that terminal is typed as and the outer container terminal is doubly closed when necessary to avoid ambiguity. Examples appear in FIG. 12. The network 16 varies accordingly.

The square ma may contain only one element. In cases where a square contains more than one element the full space square am is entered and the network 16 fills the space available for writing. The oblong rectangles rm and an may contain a single element although they more often contain two and rarely more than two. Some examples appear in FIG. 13. As contained elements are removed from the larger juxtapositional stream, so are they removed from the size determination inherent in that stream. The size of contained elements is determined by the size of the container and thus is only indirectly afiected by the larger configuration. Thus the operator after entering such elements causes the network 16 to make no changes in the biasing potentials on the tube 18.

The network 16 must occasionally create a space necessarily occuring between elements that might otherwise touch. In the nomenclature such space is indicated by the symbol y followed by the appropriate juxtapositional vowel. It behaves like any other element. That is, it serves as a juxtapositional referent that may be contained or overwritten or both, or may be marked by terminal markers, and its size is determined in the same manner as any other element in the same structure. An example of its use appears in FIG. 14. Sometimes elemental space is required within a structure to secure proper spacing and size of other elements. An example appears in FIG. 15. Sometimes space may be required as part of an element, in effect a shortening of the element, quite the opposite of the extension indicated by q. In such an instance the letter y is doubled and does not employ a vowel of its own nor affect juxtaposition. The space applied is considered part of the marked element following, as in the example of FIG. 16. The network 16 adjusts the elements accordingly.

The vowel i and 0 are also used to create lateral displacement of elements to the left and right respectively of the vertical center line of the image being formed by the network 16. Thus, elements displaced above crosses are juxtaposed above the horizontal crossbar and are typed as in FIG. 17. Ifthe element below a displaced element is also displaced, then it is also typed with a displacing vowel. But if the element below a displaced element is aligned with the vertical center line of the structure being typed, then it is typed with normal juxtapositional vowel e or sometimes u if it overwrites. Examples appear in FIG. 18.

In FIG. 1 the operating network 16 responds to the typing upon the keyboard 12 and the resulting output from the transducer 15 by energizing one of five generators 34, 36, 38, 40 or 42. The consonant signal generator 34 is composed of separate pulsers, respective ones of which emit a pulse in response to typing of the letters p, b, t, d, k, g, s, z, f, v, m, n, c, j, l, r, x, or h. The vowel signal generator 36 is composed of separate pulsers, each responding to one of the vowels a, e, i, 0, or u. The numeral signal generator 38 possesses respective pulsers responding to numerals 1 through 7. The reset signal generator 40 possesses pulsers each responding to one of the symbols and blank space. A miscellaneous generator 42 possesses pulsers responding respectively to the typing of q, y, w, An element selector generator 44 responds to a pulse from one of the pulsers in the consonant signal generator and one-of the pulses from the vowel signal generator, when a consonantand a vowel follow each other, to produce Outputs along preselected output lines on the basis of whether the consonant preceeded the vowel or the vowel preceeded the consonant. Thus, for the eighteen consonants entered into the keyboard combined with suitable vowels, as previously described, the element signal generator emits signals along 36 output lines 46. The signals along" the lines 46 energize the appropriate gate in a time sharing selector gate system 48 which receives the horizontal and vertical voltages coming from an element voltage former 50 that generates horizontal and vertical voltage signals corresponding to each of the 36 elements so that they can be formed with these voltages by applying them to the deflection plates on a cathode ray tube. The time sharing selector gate'system 48 further fits the selected elements that have been typed into the keyboard and indicated by the elements selector generator into successive time slots on a time sharing multiplex basis.

At the same time, a position and size computer 52 receiving the output signals from the elements selector generator 44 and the vowel signal generator 36 as well as the numeral signal generator 38 computes the size each element is to be as such element is entered on the basis of the number of elements in each horizontal level and the number of horizontal levels in each structure, section and character. Computer 52 also computes the position each element is to occupy on the basis of the particular vowel with which it is associated that deter mines whether it is below, to the side, or otherwise juxtaposed relative to a previous element and whether it is to occupy one or another portion of the character, that is section, as determined by the numeral signal generator. The computer 52 operates a time sharing position and size biasing network 54 that suitably attenuates and applies DC biasing potentials to each of the signals in each of the time slots emerging from the time sharing selector gate system 48. An adjustment circuit 56 passes the signal from the time sharing position and size biasing network 54 to the deflection plates of the cathode ray tube 18. This adjusting circuit 56 may at the operators option be manually controlled so that the ultimate appearance of the character on the scope conforms to normal esthetic principles. The operator may also control it manually so that desirable options such as bold-face, under or side-lining and the like may be employed.

The position and size computer 52 also establishes outputs which respond to the output from the miscellaneous signal generator in response to the nomenclature q, y, w and being typed. The typing of the letter q biases the particular element into its mutant form. This involves the use of attenuating and biasing networks.

An example of some of the details of the circuits in the network 16, particularly the manner in which the element selector generator 44 is contemplated or operates appears in FIG. 18A. Here, as mentioned, the consonant signal generator 34 is composed of eighteen pulsers 58 each responding to one of the consonants being typed. Similarly, five pulsers 60 constitute the pulsers of the vowel signal generator 36. The element selector generator 44 further comprises OR circuit 62. The OR circuit 62 applies a signal, when any of the pulsers 60 are actuated by typing any one of the vowels, to one of 18 sequence discriminator circuits 64 in the element selector generator 44. One of such sequence discriminator circuits 64 appears in detail. In addition to receiving signals from the OR circuit 62 it receives signals from its associated consonant pulser 58. The purpose of the circuit 64 to determine whether the consonant signal arrived before the vowel signal or the vowel signal arrived before the consonant signal.

When a consonant signal arrives first the pulser 58 being activated applies a pulse signal to one side of a flip-flop circuit 66 and switches it from its quiescent stable condition to its ac tive stable condition where it applies a signal to an AND circuit 68. Since the flip-flop circuit 66 is stable it continues to apply the signal to the AND circuit. At thesame time, the pulser 58 applies a simple pulse to an AND circuit 70. However, this pulse lasts only momentarily and is short enough so that it will remove the signal from the AND circuit before a subsequent signal arrives. Upon a vowel being entered into the keyboard 12 and one of the pulsers 60 applying a signal to the OR circuit 62 a pulse is applied to the AND circuit 68 having the flip-flop signal thereon. At the same time the same pulse shifts a flip-flop circuit 72 from its quiescent state to apply a continuous signal upon the AND circuit 70.-The pulse upon the AND circuit 68, when combined with the continuous signal from the flip-flop 66, acuates the AND circuit 68 to shift a flip-flop 74 into its active stable state. This produces an output at the line 76 indicating that the consonant of the pair of vowel consonant combination arrived first. An OR circuit 78 responding to this output applies a suitable signal to a line 79. The latter carries the signal to all the flip-flops in the sequence discriminator circuit 64 so as to set them into their quiescent state for the arrival of subsequent consonant vowel combinations. The flip-flops are set through diodes 80.

In the event that the vowel signal is entered first the signal from the OR circuit 62 first shifts the flip-flop. 72 to its active state and applies a continuous signal at the AND circuits 70. Only a pulse of short duration appears at the AND circuit 68. This goes away almost immediately. By the time the successive consonant pulse arrives at the flip-flop 66 the AND circuit 68 is inactivated. However, at the same time, the pulse appears at the AND circuit 70 and activates a flip-flop 82 to produce an output at the line 84 indicating that the vowel precedes the consonant. The OR circuit 78 again then shifts all the flip-flop circuits back to their quiescent state for the upcoming vowel consonant combinations.

In this manner, for each consonant there can exist two elements which are properly selected in the time sharing selector gate system. The outputs along the line 76 and 84 and their corresponding outputs from other circuits '64are applied to the position time computer as described with respect to FIG. 1. I

The circuit of FIG. 1 is thus able to respond to entries by producing any character existing in the Chinese language, and if desired, its output may be changed by manual adjustment in the adjustment circuit 56. After each character is entered and a new character is started by means of the numeral being entered into the keyboard, the optical system 30 records the picture of the character on the face of the cathode ray tube 18 onto the printer 32 and a motor M advances the printer 32 in position for the next character.

To achieve a certain amount of elegance and require a minimum of manual adjustment the computer 52 in the network 16 performs certain biasing functions and is programmed to do this in response to particular inputs. For example, if elements are displaced to both right and left the computer 52 and the network 16 places the right element on the same level as the immediately preceeding left element as in the examples of FIG. 19. When the elements are spread across a horizontal level none are considered displaced and the elemental space is used to achieve proper spacing and size as in the examples of FIG. 20. This involves the use of the letter y. The position and size computer operates to obtain theresulting character configuration in the computer. In ambiguous cases which are fortunately very rare, any structure beginning with a displaced element and following other structures in the same section is vertically juxtaposed by the computer 52. This is shown by the position of ocedpu in the example of FIG. 21.

A blank space is entered before such displaced element for clarity.

'When a cross, oblique cross, or slant cross is juxtaposed below other elements the position and size computer places the upper portion of the cross in such a position as to penetrate any free space in the structure above. In other words, wherever such space exists the horizontal cross bar, or midpoint in the case of the oblique cross, is the juxtapositional referent. Examples are shown in FiG. 22.

The computer 52 creates overwriting by responding to the letter u to form the so-called u-ablaut of the vowel of the overwriting element, which is written following the elements overwritten. In its simplest form overwriting extends over all previously written elements as in the examples of FIG. 23. The signals from the reset signal generator 40 of the terminal marker, causes the computer 52 to create an end to the overwriting. When overwriting elements composed of single lines in one direction the operator enters the terminal marker, and the computer 52 places the boundary immediately preceding the bounded element. This is shown by the examples of FIG. 24. For elements such as corners or rectangles which have both horizontal and vertical or slant componants, the computer 52 responds to the marker being placed before the element to indicate top and/or left boundary and the marker after the element to indicate right and/or bottom boundaries. Precise indications of boundary are necessary. to distinguish structures of similar form, as in examples of FIG. 25. Here the boundary markers clearly distinguish between the last two structures.

The computer 52 is also set to respond to additional rules which the entering operator follows to lend additional understanding and elegance to the typing procedure. For example, placement of the overwriting terminal marker after an element representing a rectangle or corner may cause some ambiguity with respect to the element following. The computer as well as the operator follow the rule that the marker is assumed to mark a boundary on the rectangle or comer as in example FIG. 26. However, in cases where the boundary lies on the following element the computer 52 and the operator follow the rule that a blank space precedes the marker for clarity. Such instances are infrequent but occur in such structures as shown in FIG. 27.

If only the elements within a container are overwritten then the computer 52 as well as the operator follow the rule that the overwriting element is written within the terminals of the containment and may not overwrite them. Examples appear in FIG. 28. If an element overwrites the container as well as the contained, then the operator and the computer 52 follow the rule placing it outside the terminals of the containment as shown in FIG. 29. When an overwriting element vertically divides a container containing elements not overwritten, then the overwriting element is written first and the contained elements are juxtaposed relative to the overwriting element as shown by the examples in FIG. 30. Overwriting elements horizontally dividing a container which contains elements not overwritten follow the rule that the overwriting element is written fust and contained elements are juxtaposed relative to the immediate preceding container as in examples of FIG. 31.

Since corners and angles are composed of components in two directions the operator and computer must make a choice when they are overwritten. For overwriting by horizontals or verticals the crossing point is incidentally determined, that is horizontals cross the verticals or the slantportion while verticals cross the horizontal portion of corners and angles. For overwriting by slants the rules are that left slant crosses the upper portion of comers and angles and right slant crosses the lower portion of corners and angles. Examples of this are shown in FIG. 32. Crosses, which overwrite only above the crossbar, are overwritten only below the crossbar. The crossbar itself does not overwrite. FIG. 33 illustrates some examples.

In overwriting comers and angles or any container it is convenient to apply the following restrictions so that the com- Ill puter and the operator perform according to the following rule: Any element whose overwriting portion consists of a single straight line overwriting one side one side of a container, be it a single element or a structure of more than one element, may overwrite any parallel side and any contained elements of such container not terminally marked, but may not overwrite any non-parallel side as in the examples of FIG. 34.

For convenience the circuit 16 and partially the computer 52 are arranged so that it follows the other rules set for the operator entering the elements, as follows:

Because of the restricted overwriting function of certain elements and additional restrictions imposed by these writing rules under certain conditions some elementsmay not be written but must be synthesized from simpler elements. Chief among such cases are the crosses. The examples of FIG. 35 clarify this rule.

Dots, ca and ac, latterly displaced to the left or right of the vertical center line of any structure may not be overwritten by any vertical or mutant slant within that structure; that is they are displaced beyond the reach of the overwriting. In structures composed of a series of successive overwritings, juxtaposition is determined incidentally. However, a series of parallel or partly parallel overwritings are vertically juxtaposed if the overwriting elements are horizontal. Moreover they are horizontally juxtaposed if the overwriting elements are vertical. Examples of these three cases appear in first three characters of FIG. 36. To achieve consistency in the nomenclature when choosing the overwriting element in ambigious cases, the operator and computer 52 follow the priority rules that first the element which overwrites the most elements is the overwriting element. Second, the simple element overwrites the complex, and third, vertical overwrites the horizontal.

To further avoid ambiguities all non-mutant q-forms extend from their starting point to the limit of the space available for writing. No problem arises from the case of horizontals, but in the case of verticals it is useful to observe the following rule: Any element juxtaposed horizontally with respect to a vertical q-form shall evenly divide the space to the right of such q-form with those elements juxtaposed directly below it. The examples of FIG. 37 help clarify the operation of this rule.

Sometimes portions of a character may exhibit a complexity which requires juxtaposition of structures rather than elemerits. Such juxtaposition is called resection and is of two types, horizontal and vertical. Horizontal resection, indicated by the resection marker, followed by an element in horizontal juxtaposition, means that the structure following the resection marker is written at the same horizontal level as the structure preceding, back to the previous boundary. The computer and the remainder of circuit 16 perform this function in response to the resection marker. If a boundary must be supplied, the resection terminal marker, is used. An example of such a character and its typing entry appears in FIG. 38. Vertical resection, indicated by the resection marker, followed by an element in v ertical juxtaposition occurrs when a vertical q-form appears in some structures, and it is necessary to mark a terminal to its otherwise continuing extent. An example of such a character and its entry form appears in FIG. 39. An additional marker to indicate the final terminal of resection is unnecessary since all such resections seem to compose sections of characters and the boundaries are inherent.

Resection can be avoided through resort to economical alternatives achieved through the writing rules. For example, the structure shown in FIG. 40 can be written using resection as shown by the first typed entry in FIG. 40 but is more economically rendered by resorting to containment rather than resection nomenclature as shown in the second entry.

A phenomenon similar to resection, but simpler and more frequent in occurrence, is reduplication. Significant economy is obtained in the nomenclature in cases where structures rather than elements are reduplicated. The reduplication marker w followed by appropriate vowel is placed immediately following the last element in the structure to be reduplicated. If the reduplicated structure is a section or container other markers may intervene.

, Reduplication applies to all preceding elements back to preceding boundary. If necessary to indicate a boundary the resection terminal marker, is used. Some examples of reduplication are illustrated in FIG. 41.

The hooks, elements ha, ah are unique in the table of elements, being the only elements, aside from elemental space of course, with zero stroke count. Under most ordinary circumstances the hooks may be conveniently and economically ignored, as in fact they are ignored in many type fonts and writing styles. There are certain situations in which the hooks served a discretionary function, being the only element distinguishing two otherwise, identical characters. An example appears in FIG. 42. In such cases, which are very rare, the hook may not be ignored. Ifforasthetic reasons a user wishes to employ the hooks, a few criteria must be used. The left hook ha is actually a clockwise hook differing in orientation depending upon its juxtaposition. Thus, the character shown in FIG. 43 contains two hooks, ha and he. The hook may not contain other elements and may not overwrite or be overwritten, and juxtaposition is relative to the element to which the hook is attached; that is the element immediately preceding. In a similar fashion the right hook is counter-clockwise as shown in FIG. 44.

For achieving essential consistency in the nomenclature, structures should be such as to use the fewest possible elements, consistent with the writing rules. Elements themselves may be synthesized only when it is not possible to write a structure within the limitations imposed by the writing rules. In other cases, the operator should use the minimum possible number of elements and other indicators.

It will be noted that the writing rules serve mainly to reduce the number of entries necessary for achieving a particular result in the ultimate output. The computer 52 needs simply to be programmed for such an arrangement.

FIG. 45 illustrates a system for transmitting Chinese language characters back and forth over distances. Here the output of the transducer 15 in the circuit is transmitted directly across a line or other transmission medium 80 to a receiving station composed of a circuit 16 and 20. The receiving station also has a transmitter corresponding to the circuit 10 which in turn can transmit signals over the transmitting medium 80 back to the original transmitter having circuit 16 and a circuit 20.

The invention may also be utilized in entering information into a memory for the purpose of classification. Here as shown in FIG. 46 a memory is placed between the circuit 10 and the circuit 16. Information from the transducer is fed into the memory and retrieved by a read-out device 88 from which it may be fed to the circuit 16 when the information is desired. The read-out device may also retrieve the stored information and transmit it to a classifying device 90, or to a transmitting medium for read-out elsewhere.

FIG. 47 illustrates still another embodiment of the invention. Here an input mechanism 102 corresponds to a conventional typewriter having a keyboard 104, but includes a transducer 106 that transmits electrical signals corresponding to the letters and symbols being struck on the keyboard as in FIG. 1 into an electronic memory 108. The latter stores the transmitted signals until a signal marking the end of a complete Chinese language character is struck on the keyboard. The memory 108 then energizes a scanner 1 10.

The scanner 110 scans the memory 108 and transmits the number of elements to an element counter 112. The latter recognizes the complexity of the character and the apropriate size of the average element. It enters the information into a size selector 1 14. The latter also receives information from an element selector ,1 16 which from the scanner 110 has entered therein the first scanned element together with the gross form of the character so the size selector 1 14 can consider whether the element is part of an enclosing or enclosed section.

The element selector 116 energizes a mover 120 composed of a motor that axially moves a frame 122. The latter supports a set of coaxially arranged type discs 124. Each type disc 124 carries on its edge raised type faces in the form of one of the elements in graduated sizes within the size range suitable for such elements in Chinese language characters. The mover 120 moves the frame 122 until the disc having the element selected by the element selector 116 and the area of the character section to be typed on a paper carried by a platen 126 are juxtaposed. The size selector 114 energized by the stroke counter 112 starts a motor 128 which rotates the discs on the frame 122 until the correct size of type face on the disc appears opposite the typing area for the character to be typed.

The scanner 110 now energizes a horizontal positioner 130 and vertical positioner 132 that raises and lowers the platen 134 so as to place the element type face on the disc opposite the portion of the space in which the character is to be typed that will be occupied by the element on the disc. The element is then struck. The scanner 110 goes to the next elements to be entered until the entire character-is typed. An operator then enters the next character in the keyboard. The platen is shifted manually or automatically to the next character position on the paper.

An indexer 136 responding to the memory 108 receives the entry for each character and stores it. It also alphabetizes the character on the basis of its English language spelling so that the scanner 110 can trigger it and retrieve the character as desired.

In efiect the keyboard 1 04, memory 108 and indexer 136 form a complete indexing system of its own. An operator need merely enter each character by its elements into the indexer 136 through the memory 108. The indexer 136 then arranges the characters on the basis of their entry alphabet. To read out the scanner 110 or other means recovers the alphabetized information from the indexer 136. The indexer may for example be a punch tape arrangement or punch card arrangement that allows for alphabetical recovery.

FIG. 48 illustrates still another embodiment of the invention. Here the keyboard 104 energizes the indicators 158 shown and feeds them into a memory 160. A computer 162 determines the character configuration and number of sections. It counts the structures and elementshorizontally and vertically within sections to determine the sizing and spacing. The computer 162 then feeds this information back into the memory and to a printer 164 as instructions for printout.

While embodiments of the invention have been described in detail it will be obvious to those skilled in the art that the invention may be embodied otherwise without departing from its spirit and scope.

I claim:

I. The method of encoding and decoding non-alphabetic characters comprising, entering into a storage device a given symbol defining one of the elements in the character, successively entering into the storage device given symbols defining other elements in the character, and entering with the given symbols defining other elements in the character given ones of a finite plurality of predetermined symbols defining the positions of the other elements relative to the element defined by the previous symbol.

2. The method in claim 1, further comprising entering in the storage device a symbol defining the gross form of the character so as to divide the character into sections, and only thereafter entering the given symbol defining said one of said elements, and completely entering the symbols defining the elements in one section of the character before proceeding to enter the symbols of elements in another section of the character.

3. The method of claim 1, which further comprises transmitting the symbols in said storage device to readout means, and converting the symbols to the elements and printing the elements.

4. The method as in claim 3 which further comprises counting predeterrninal ones of said elements that have been entered while ignoring predetermined others of the entered elements, and adjusting the size of the individual ones of the elements as they are printed and on the basis of the number of elements counted.

5. Apparatus for encoding and decoding non-alphabetic characters, comprising information storage means, first entering means for successively entering into said storage means predetermined symbols defining elements in said character, second entering means for successively entering into said storage means given ones of a finite plurality of predetermined symbols defining the position of each element relative to the previous element, and means for utilizing the symbols entered into said storage means.

6. Apparatus as set forth in claim 5, further comprising gross form entering means for entering into said storage means a symbol defining the gross form of the character to be entered.

7. Apparatus as in claim 5, further comprising means responsive to said storage means for reconverting said symbols to elements, and means for printing said elements out so as to reconstitute said character.

8. Apparatus as in claim 7, wherein said means for reconverting includes type faces andsaid means for printing includes a type platen.

9. Apparatus as in claim 7, wherein said means for reconverting include a scope, and said printing means include optical means for recording the image formed on said scope.

10. Apparatus as in claim 7, further comprising means for counting predetermined ones of said elements which have been entered, means for ignoring other ones of said elements which have been entered, and means for adjusting the size of the individual ones of the elements as they are printed on the basis of the counting.

1 l. The method of forming non-alphabetic characters comprising, entering into a system a first symbol, entering a pair of symbols, forming the image of one of a finite plurality of elements on the basis of the firstof said symbols, forming an image of one of a finite plurality of elements on the basis of one of the pair of said symbols, and juxtaposing the images relative to each other in one of a plurality of finite juxtapositional relationships on the basis of the other of said symbols in said pair.

12. The method as in claim 11, further comprising the step of adjusting the sizes of the images on the basis of the number of images.

13. The method as in claim 11, further comprising the steps of entering additional pairs of symbols, entering a gross form symbol, forming an image of one of a finite plurality of elements for each pair of symbols entered on the basis of one of the symbols in each pair, juxtaposing the images relative to each other in one of a plurality of finite juxtapositional relationships on the basis of the other of the symbols in the additional pairs of symbols entered, and adjusting the juxtapositional relationships of groups of images relative to other groups of images on the basis of the gross form symbol.

14. The method as in claim 11, further comprising the steps of entering a gross form symbol, confining the images in one area defined by the gross form symbol, adjusting the sizes of the images on the basis of the defined area, entering additional pairs of symbols, forming an image of one of a finite plurality of elements for each pair of symbols entered on the basis of one of the symbols in each pair, juxtaposing the images relative to each other on the basis of the other of the symbols in the additional pair of symbols entered, confining the images in another area defined by the gross form symbol, and adjusting the sizes of the images on the basis of the other defined area.

15. The method as in claim 11, wherein the images are formed on the basis of each symbol entered in the fonn of hooks, crosses, boxes and curves.

16. An apparatus for forming non-alphabetic characters, comprising control means, a finite plurality of first entering means for successively entering into said control means ggedetennined s bols defining elements in the character a rte plurality 0 second entering means for entering into said control means with each of said predetermined symbols given symbols defining the position in each element relative to the previous element, forming means responsive to said control means for successively forming one of, a finite plurality of predetermined images based on each of the symbols entered into said first entering means, and positioning means in said forming means for juxtaposing each of the images relative to each other in one of a finite plurality of juxtapositional relationships on the basis of the symbols entered by said second entering means.

17. An apparatus as in claim 16, wherein said forming means includes size adjustment means responsive to said control means for adjusting the size of the images on the basis of their number.

18. An apparatus as in claim 16, further comprising third entering means for entering with a plurality of predetermined symbols a symbol defining an area to be occupied by a given plurality of said symbols and another area to be occupied by another plurality of images.

19. An apparatus as in claim 18, wherein said forming means includes size adjustment means responsive to said control means for adjusting the size of the images on the basis of number in the defined area.

20. An apparatus as in claim 19, wherein said forming means forms on the basis of symbols entered, hooks, crosses, boxes and curves.

2]. An apparatus as in claim 16, wherein said forming means forms, on the basis of the symbols entered, one of a plurality of hooks, crosses, boxes and curves.

t a: a

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Classifications
U.S. Classification345/472.3, 400/110, 382/243, 396/557
International ClassificationG06F3/00, B41J3/01, G06F3/01
Cooperative ClassificationB41J3/01, G06F3/018
European ClassificationB41J3/01, G06F3/01M