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From:  Stuart Thiessen
Date:  Mon May 8, 2000  12:47 am
Subject:  Re: SW in Databases

At 14:00 05/07/2000 +0000, Trevor wrote:
>On Sat, 6 May 2000 16:22:56 -0700, Valerie Sutton
> > Hello Everyone and Trevor -
> > Many thanks for the information about all of these database software
> > programs - wow - there are a lot of them! ;-)
>and that's not the half of them.
> > The question is how we can take the EXISTING SignWriter 4.3 and
> > combine it with EXISTING database software.
>I think the problem is the "existing" SignWriter 4.3. I've not used it
>enough to make a definitive statement concerning its interoperability with
>other applications. From the context in which the original questions wer
>asked (moving SW dictionaries to a database) I think the easiest method is
>to create ad addtional utility that will extract the dictionary file into a
>(new) format suitable for importing into a database system (and
>comma-delimited might be suitable). The issue will be how to convert the
>SignWriter glyphs into a "blob" that can be loaded into any datbase.

It seems to me that there could be a possibility of building a trap into
the routine that reads the user's keystrokes and based on that (and a
knowledge of the keyboard in use) save that "linear" information into a
format that could be reproduced. Perhaps a standard database could be
developed with an internal database of SW symbols as they are represented
by the keyboard. A program attached to that database could read the
keystrokes and extrapolate the sign from the captured keystrokes. If the
Sutton Sign Sequence is solidified enough ( I haven't seen it in full so I
don't know), then perhaps those keystrokes could be analyzed to determine
what symbols were used and perhaps even determine the appropriate Sutton
Sign Sequence for that sign.

Perhaps the real benefit might simply be to create a linear format for the
Sutton Sign Sequence and use the keystrokes to analyze the sign's structure
and then create some linear ASCII representation that can go into a
database record. Then sorting can be done on that field, while a image
could be placed in a image field to convey the SW itself without trying to
extrapolate the sign.

Altering the SW 4.3 source to build a trap like this would require a
compiler that can compile that Pascal code that SW 4.3 is written in. I do
not have access to a Pascal compiler and I am not entirely sure exactly how
the keystrokes were captured in the first place, but that part would seem
reasonably simple. Analyzing the sign from those keystrokes is the real

For what it is worth,


For the programmers (amateur or otherwise) on the list, does this seem
reasonable? I'm suggesting this in general. If any wish to discuss this,
I'm not entirely sure if this should be on the list or off the list, but it
is related to the topic of how to utilize another database.

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