Encyclopedia > Chinese input methods for computer

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Chinese input methods for computer

Because the Chinese language is an logographic language in which one "character" corresponds roughly to one "word" or meaning there are vastly more characters, or glyphs, than there are on a standard computer keyboard.

To allow the input of Chinese using standard keyboards a variety of keyboard input methods have been designed.

Keyboard input methods can be classified in 3 main types: by encoding, by pronunciation, and by structure of the characters. The following are just some samples of Chinese input methods. Many of those input methods have variations. Full Pinyin and Double Pinyin are variation of the Pinyin input method.

Different people are most comfortable with different methods and so there is no likelihood of a "standard" method evolving.

Other means of inputting Chinese characters are note widely used but include stylus and tablet, with hand-writing recognition software, as the most common alternative, and then OCR optical character recognition (OCR) and voice recognition. As with English language all these methods suffer from high error rates.

Table of contents


Character Structure

Combination of Pronunciation and Character Structure

Character Encodings


  • English-Chinese Translation

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