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> Chinese Quickstart Or Howto?
raduga
post May 18 2007, 07:03 AM
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It looks like Meanie and a few others have had good results with scim in pdaXrom;
possibly cacko and Sharp rom; some have tried to reproduce their results, and some succeed.

I've been trying with scim and pdaXrom- b3/Xii13/b4/r198 but haven't had
ANY luck getting it to actually work. Possible problems with fonts,
possibly with scim setup, possibly missing other components, possible bugs.

Can anyone who *has* gotten Chinese text input working reliably, in any
pdaXrom variant (or even, any non-pdaXrom variant) please describe
the necessary steps, necessary packages, etc, to get this working?

With abiword or (hopefully) lighter-weight editor?
Any possibility of a console (vi, joe, etc) editor?

thanks...
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ZDevil
post May 18 2007, 07:23 AM
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I was using Chinese inputmethod (SCIM, UIM, GCIN) to write Chinese under pdaXrom Beta3. But since Beta4/r121 upwards I can never get the Chinese inputmethods working, despite what other users' report of success (but without much detail). Probably it's due to the incompatibillity between the inputmethod programs and the libraries they use (mainly GTK/GTK+2 and glibc vs. libiconv).
Font in this platform is not an issue because the system simply uses truetype fonts as in desktop environments.

Sharp/Cacko have a few Chinese inputmethod programs to choose from, such as CKeyboard, Murphytalk and another one (forgot the name but it seems to have been announced recently). You need specially converted .qpf Chinese fonts to work under Qtopia. If you need the links or files I can find some pointers for you.

Chinese support in OZ and Angstrom is never clear, despite what the developers say "in theory it should work". And no action is seen taken to provide the functionality/font/program packages.

I have started using OpenBSD/Zaurus now. Everything aligns with the standard across different hardware/architectures. In fact my very next plan is to compile SCIM and/or zh-xcin for OBSD. I don't see any special reason why they will fail, particularly because they are already in the OpenBSD port collections. Or else there is still a way to use other BSD and Linux binaries, so more solutions are available.

You may also want to have a look at my (another) home forum, where I am one of the moderators:
http://www.pumb.org/forumdisplay.php?fid=15
, where people use Mandarin (official form), Cantonese (common form in Hong Kong) and English interchangeably. If you have problems with the Chinese (written Cantonese) there, people will automatically switch to English to help you out. smile.gif

Hope that helps.
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raduga
post May 18 2007, 09:52 AM
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QUOTE(ZDevil @ May 18 2007, 07:23 AM)
I was using Chinese inputmethod (SCIM, UIM, GCIN) to write Chinese under pdaXrom Beta3. But since Beta4/r121 upwards I can never get the Chinese inputmethods working, despite what other users' report of success (but without much detail). Probably it's due to the incompatibillity between the inputmethod programs and the libraries they use (mainly GTK/GTK+2 and glibc vs. libiconv).
Font in this platform is not an issue because the system simply uses truetype fonts as in desktop environments.

I have started using OpenBSD/Zaurus now. Everything aligns with the standard across different hardware/architectures. In fact my very next plan is to compile SCIM and/or zh-xcin for OBSD.  I don't see any special reason why they will fail, particularly because they are already in the OpenBSD port collections. Or else there is still a way to use other BSD and Linux binaries, so more solutions are available.

You may also want to have a look at my (another) home forum, where I am one of the moderators:
http://www.pumb.org/forumdisplay.php?fid=15
, where people use Mandarin (official form), Cantonese (common form in Hong Kong) and English interchangeably. If you have problems with the Chinese (written Cantonese) there, people will automatically switch to English to help you out.  smile.gif

Hope that helps.
*


Helps a lot, thanks!

a few things....

are scim, uim, gcim, compatible with eachother? Can I install them together,
or is it better to try to just use one at a time?

Under b4+ I was seeing immediate segfault when trying to configure scim.
On pdaxii13, I'm able to get scim to load; but the icon in the tray doesn't seem
responsive, most of the time.
None of the hotkeys seem to work in any application I've tried (abiword, leafpad)
and after manually switching to chinese input method, typing on the keyboard
only produces english output.

I haven't found a "standard" set of fonts, though, some other forums suggest "fireflysung.ttf".
I've installed this in /usr/share/fonts, and fc-list seems to find it,
but again, using AbiWord, etc, with this font, I don't seem to get any Chinese output.

I think I may have the locales set up wrong, or missing; I really *haven't* worked
with non-US-english locales under linux before, so I'm not entirely sure what I need.
I've just started learning Mandarin, so my competence in reading/writing is close to
zero; I'm hoping to improve. The Pumb forum looks neat, but I can't (yet) make heads nor tails of it.

I'm starting with a base install of pdaXii13 on akita; I'm not sure what packages to load on top of the base.

If you have any ideas, or if you'd just recommend diving in to the PUMB board; I'll try that.
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ZDevil
post May 18 2007, 10:02 AM
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You need to add some lines in .xinitrc to get the inputmethod working. I suppose you already know this already? Or can you detail what you've done so that we can probe any possible error?

On the contrary, I never had problem with inputmethods in Beta1 and Beta3, except inputting Chinese in QT apps with SCIM. While some report success, i never managed to get it working.

And as i said, after beta4 I cannot use them, which is one of the reasons I am not using pdaX now as my working system on Z.

I think you can only set up one inputmethod at a time, because you need to export the values of the inputmethods, and you cannot use more than one at the same time.
Maybe I am wrong here?

Do drop by PUMB if you use Chinese (I guess you do, otherwise what are we talking about here? laugh.gif ). People are also very helpful and friendly there, although the forum is not hacker-centric at all but instead is heavily common-user-oriented. If you know the chinese of my a/c name here, you should know who i am in PUMB. wink.gif
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desertrat
post May 18 2007, 10:48 AM
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QUOTE(raduga @ May 18 2007, 05:52 PM)
I'm starting with a base install of pdaXii13 on akita; I'm not sure what packages to load on top of the base.

I think you only need the base scim package, then as you're learning Putonghua (Mandarin is an archaic term) you need scim-pinyin, and for good measure you might want scim-tables as well.

After installing those, run:
CODE
gtk-query-immodules-2.0 > /etc/gtk-2.0/gtk.immodules


Now you'll want to set your locale to UTF and to tell X to use scim. I have these in my /etc/sysconfig/locale:

CODE
export LC_ALL=en_US.UTF-8                                                                
export LANG=en_US.UTF-8                                                                  
                                                                                       
export XMODIFIERS="@im=SCIM"                                                            
export GTK_IM_MODULE="xim"                                                              
export QT_IM_MODULE="xim"

In theory that's all you need for scim to work. However ...

... I had to add "scim -d" to my .xinitrc (or you use .xsession) for it to work - NB that doing this forces scim to load itself whenever you start X thus increasing startup time and using up memory. When I used beta1 I didn't use "scim -d", scim just started up whenever I used a program which allowed it, but then with beta1 scim only worked with gtk programs.

Anyway, more info here:
http://www.oesf.org/forums/index.php?showtopic=22304&st=0

QUOTE(ZDevil @ May 18 2007, 06:02 PM)
On the contrary, I never had problem with inputmethods in Beta1 and Beta3, except inputting Chinese in QT apps with SCIM. While some report success, i never managed to get it working.
With beta3, scim works nicely with qt programs (tuxcards, kdepim etc).

QUOTE
Do drop by PUMB if you use Chinese (I guess you do, otherwise what are we talking about here?  laugh.gif ). People are also very helpful and friendly there, although the forum is not hacker-centric at all but instead is heavily common-user-oriented. If you know the chinese of my a/c name here, you should know who i am in PUMB. wink.gif

I tried registering on PUMB once but it rejected all my webmail addresses sad.gif, any chance of dropping that restriction?
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ZDevil
post May 18 2007, 11:01 AM
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QUOTE(desertrat @ May 18 2007, 08:48 PM)
[SNIP!]
With beta3, scim works nicely with qt programs (tuxcards, kdepim etc).

I still don't know what goes wrong, very likely it's the locale setting. But I remembered I didn't need that for SCIM to work for GTK apps.
Anyway right now I am already plunging into OpenBSD. It is now very stable to use. I simply love using my Z with the most standard documentation and the very neat port system in the *nix world. And indeed it has all the potentials to be the real one for Z!


... Off topic (sorry tongue.gif )
QUOTE(desertrat @ May 18 2007, 08:48 PM)
[SNIP!]
QUOTE
Do drop by PUMB if you use Chinese (I guess you do, otherwise what are we talking about here?  laugh.gif ). People are also very helpful and friendly there, although the forum is not hacker-centric at all but instead is heavily common-user-oriented. If you know the chinese of my a/c name here, you should know who i am in PUMB. wink.gif

I tried registering on PUMB once but it rejected all my webmail addresses sad.gif, any chance of dropping that restriction?
*


I'm afraid not. I am no the site admin so I can't do much here. Sorry.
But you can definitely register with any ISP email address. It doesn't do anything negative (trust me on that -- i have been an old enough member there for 6 years; PUMB is now the 4th generation) but simply a measure to control spammers and bots and something like that. Hope that helps and really look forward to seeing you there! smile.gif
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sdjf
post May 18 2007, 03:22 PM
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QUOTE(ZDevil)
But you can definitely register with any ISP email address. It doesn't do anything negative (trust me on that -- i have been an old enough member there for 6 years; PUMB is now the 4th generation) but simply a measure to control spammers and bots and something like that. 


Some ISPs get blacklisted because of their history, but you're saying that can't be happening in this case. I do want to comment that in some forums, I just can't get registration to work, no matter what I do, and I believe it's often due to bad html that hasn't been run through a syntax checker, or other browser compatibility issues.

What I do in that case is ask a friend who uses mainstream browsers to sign up for me using their browser. Then, if I'm lucky, the site works fine for me. If all else fails, get a friend to help. wink.gif

ZDevil, I take it these applications your are talking about all still access the basic kernel in English, and console input still is in English? This is an important issue for me as I've been trying to make my site more friendly for people not fluent in English, in case they might want to use a translation engine. It's a challenge and requires major changes in writing style.

But I assume the linux code and commands are still in English, aren't they? HTML "code" tags are one piece of this, but http://babelfish.altavista.com is the only translation engine that comes out well in the testing I've done so far. And it will only work well at websites that have been designed with what I will call "technical translation friendliness" in mind.

I hope this isn't too OT. Is there a need for pages that are better read in native tongue using the messy translations of the free engines, than in English when it's not one's native language? If there isn't, then I'm wasting lot of time revising my site!

Thanks,
sdjf
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ZDevil
post May 19 2007, 08:50 AM
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QUOTE(sdjf @ May 19 2007, 01:22 AM)
ZDevil, I take it these applications your are talking about all still access the basic kernel in English, and console input still is in English?  This is an important issue for me as I've been trying to make my site more friendly for people not fluent in English, in case they might want to use a translation engine.  It's a challenge and requires major changes in writing style.

But I assume the linux code and commands are still in English, aren't they?  HTML "code"  tags are one piece of this, but http://babelfish.altavista.com is the only translation engine that comes out well in the testing I've done so far.  And it will only work well at websites that have been designed with what I will call "technical translation friendliness" in mind.

I hope this isn't too OT.  Is there a need for pages that are better read in native tongue using the messy translations of the free engines, than in English when it's not one's native language?  If there isn't, then I'm wasting  lot of time revising my site!

Thanks,
sdjf
*


To be honest, I still think the (free) online machine translation engines still suck. Translating English and Chinese in either way often ends up being indecipherable gibberish. huh.gif

As for the medium, I suppose English is the universal lingua franca and is easiest to work with for most people. Even though I am a Chinese speaker, more often than not I find the English sources much easier to read than the Chinese rash translations. Of course stuff written from the ground up or checked seriously after translation are fine. This doesn't simply apply to *nix but to many other fields and discipline as well.
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sdjf
post May 19 2007, 09:31 PM
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QUOTE(ZDevil @ May 19 2007, 09:50 AM)
To be honest, I still think the (free) online machine translation engines still suck. Translating English and Chinese in either way often ends up being indecipherable gibberish. huh.gif
As for the medium, I suppose English is the universal lingua franca and is  easiest to work with for most people.  Even though I am a Chinese speaker, more often than not I find the English sources much easier to read than the Chinese rash translations.  Of course stuff written from the  ground up or checked seriously after translation are fine. This doesn't simply apply to *nix but to many other fields and discipline as well.
*


Why ask the question if I didn't want an honest answer? Thanks. I know the translations suck. I just think they suck less if a few rules are followed to cut down on the craziness.

For sure, it's better to read in the original language. And anyone with a fluent knowledge of English has no serious need to use an engine.

I just know that it helps me to read a poor translation rather than try to read something in a language I am not fluent in, and have no idea how many people have serious problems with English documentation who would benefit.

I have read stuff translated to English and agree, it's very difficult to decipher. The most important stuff is often totally unclear. But still better than untranslated...I mean, some documentation is in Japanese, and I have no ability to read the language, so the rotten translation enabled me to at least get the gist of how to proceed.

But, translation engine issues aside, am I correct in guessing that it's just applications, and not kernel commands themselves, that get modified in porting to another language? I am just curious at this point.

Thanks,
sdjf
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ZDevil
post May 19 2007, 11:04 PM
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QUOTE(sdjf @ May 20 2007, 07:31 AM)
I have read stuff translated to English and agree, it's very difficult to decipher.  The most important stuff is often totally unclear.  But still better than untranslated...I mean, some documentation is in Japanese, and I have no ability to read the language, so the rotten translation enabled me to  at least get the gist of  how to proceed.


I think it works, provided that one has enough skills and background knowledge; but for a layman or newbie, asking him to set up a system by referring primarily to the machine translated docs can be nightmarish. biggrin.gif

QUOTE(sdjf @ May 20 2007, 07:31 AM)
But, translation engine issues aside, am I correct in guessing that it's just applications, and not kernel commands themselves, that get modified in porting to another language?  I am just curious at this point.
*


If i understand you correctly, you are talking about the applications and solutions of using Chinese on Z, right? In fact there is no complete localization of the system. Kernel commands, shells, settings are all in English. The "Chinese localization" (and also true of localization for any other language) here simply means three things: 1) Enabling Chinese fonts and inputmethods in shell and in X; 2) Changing the desktop and window menus from English to Chinese; 3) Changing individual programs' interface to display Chinese messages.
Or are you thinking of something else?
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sdjf
post May 20 2007, 09:54 AM
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Yup, you're right on all counts!

Documentation is usually hard enough to understand in it's original language, let alone via a slaughtered version of it. smile.gif

And thanks for explaining localization to me.

sdjf
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