forum SignWriting List Forum
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From:  Judy Kegl
Date:  Tue Oct 27, 1998  5:06 pm
Subject:  Re: Frequently-Asked Questions

This is one of those issues that my wife Judy can address with inspiring
eloquence, but I am more earthy by nature.

The terrific thing about SW is that it is not really all that iconic.
Rather, the system sets forth a clear and readily understanbale CODE which
allows the reader to reliably predict the "spelling" of the sign. In
short, SW is a visually phonetic coding system. (One might argue how much
a specific sign language may be iconic, but SW most definitely is not.)

It takes years and years of schooling to learn to write Chinese -- each
written form must be memorized by rote. One can master SW in a matter of

-- James Shepard-Kegl

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