Chonburi, by Cadson Demak, is a Pinyin-friendly font that also covers Thai.
Because of its relatively small size, it could work well on Thai-language Web pages that also include Pinyin. Maybe there aren’t many of those now, but eventually….
It is available through Google Fonts.
I’ve just added to Pinyin.info the tenth and final issue (December 1989) of the seminal journal Xin Tang. I strongly encourage everyone to take a look at it and some of the other issues. Copies of this journal are extremely rare; but their importance is such that I’ll be putting all of them online here over the years.
Xin Tang 10
Although I’m giving the table of contents in English, the articles themselves are in Mandarin and written in Pinyin.
- FEATURE ARTICLES
- ZHOU YOUGUANG: The Next Step of Language Modernization
- CHEN ENQUAN: Experiments Should Be Carried Out on the Phoneticization of Chinese Characters
- LI YUAN: Romanized Chinese Must Be Finalized
- LI PING: To Be a Promoter of Script Reform
- ZHENG LINXI: Wu Yuzhang and Chinese Phonetic Spelling
- ZHANG LIQING: How Should the Tones of Chinese Spelling Be Indicated?
- LIQING: Elephants
- CHEN XUANYOU (Tang Period): The Wandering Soul
- WU JINGZI (Qing Period): Third Daughter Wang
- LU XUN: On the Collapse of Thunder Peak Pagoda
- RUI LUOBIN: The Adventures of Chunmei and Mimi
- COMIC DIALOGUES: Toad Drums
- WEI YIJIN: Dreams at Twenty
- DIAO KE: In Praise o f the Spirit of Bees
- GE XIAOLING: A Song to the Disabled Children
- YBY: The Story of the Magic Square
- SHORT SKETCHES
- DIAN EWEN: Interesting Tidbits about Script Reform Abroad
- LI YUAN: A Few Statistics on Tones Notations in Romanized Chinese
- LEARNING MANDARIN
- FROM THE EDITORS
Essays 1743 is a public-domain font family that has all of the vowel/diacritic combinations needed for Hanyu Pinyin, though the third-tone marks tend to look a bit stiff relative to everything else. Regardless, I’m a sucker for old-style figures (e.g., examples B and D).
In 2012 China revised its official guidelines for writing Pinyin.
These are the Hanyu Pinyin Zhengcifa Jiben Guize (official translation: “Basic Rules of the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet Orthography”), promulgated as GB/T 16159-2012.
Among the changes are that some alternate forms are now allowed, for example “wo de” (my) may also be written as “wode”. I’m not thrilled about that; but I know some people will welcome this.
I’ve added a few notes, such as for errors in the original document.
So far I have made only a version in so-called simplified Chinese characters. But eventually I’ll add one in traditional Chinese characters and an English translation.
When I first looked at Pablo Impallari’s font Lobster around the end of 2011, it wasn’t yet capable of handling Pinyin with tone marks. But Lobster has improved since then.
A Pinyin-friendly bold condensed script font that looks good and is free — that’s great news.
It can handle Cyrillic too.
It’s available through Google Fonts.
Unfortunately, its companion, Lobster Two, doesn’t have the same range and so cannot be used for Hanyu Pinyin with tone marks. But I’ll check again in a few years, just in case.
The ninth issue of Xin Tang is now available here on Pinyin.info. The journal, which was published in the 1980s, is in and about romanization. By this point in its publication most everything in it was written in Hanyu Pinyin (as opposed to Gwoyeu Romatzyh or another system). Xin Tang is interesting not just as a forum in which one can read original content in Pinyin. It’s also important for the history of Pinyin itself. Over the course of its nearly decade-long run, one can see its authors (including many top people in romanization) working out Pinyin as a real script.
Xin Tang no. 9 (December 1988)
Here’s an English version of the table of contents. Note that the articles themselves are, for the most part, in Mandarin.
- Wang Jun: Perfecting Hanyu Pinyin and Broadening Its Use
- Wang Naican: “Established at Age Thirty,but the Task is Heavy and the Way is Long”
- Apollo Wu: China Needs an Alphabetical Script
- Zhang Liqing: Must Written Chinese Have Tones Indicated?
- Qian Yuzhi, Li Shuo: Research on Alphabetical Spelling of Tones
- Victor H. Mair: A Letter Concerning the Compilation of an Alphabetically Ordered Dictionary
- Pinyin and Computers
- Guo Xiao, Chen Zhiqiang: Welcoming the Era of the Popularization of Word Processors- An Interview with Professor Zhou Youguang
- Yin Binyong: Pinyin Computers Force People to Change Their Writing Styles
- Wu Yue: Using a Computerized Chinese Typewriter to Help in Creative Writing
- Jin Huishu: Few Special Spellings Are Required for “Automatic Conversion from Pinyin to Chinese Characters”
- It Is Not Difficult to Master Pinyin Computers (report from Henan)
- International Computer Conference Held in Toronto in 1988 (report from Canada)
- Children’s Corner: Literature
- Little Xie’s Long Trunk,
- The Adventures of Chunmei and Mimi (illustrated serial by Rui Luobin),
- Encounter beneath the Lighthouse,
- The Oriole and the Eagle (Liqing),
- The Fig Tree (Xu Hongxin)
- Classical Chinese Selection
- A Passage from the Zhuangzi
- Learning Mandarin
- Letters from Readers
- Commemoration of the Thirtieth Anniversary of the Promulgation of the Scheme for Hanyu Pinyin Official
- Promulgation of the Basic Orthographical Rules for Hanyu Pinyin
- The Bilingual Pedagogical Experiment of Zhang Zhigong
- Hangzhou Experiments with a New Pedagogy Using Pinyin
- Announcement of a New Book: “Chinese Romanization: Pronunciation and Orthography”
I’d like to share a note that Zhou Youguang, the father of Pinyin, very generously wrote to me last week.
??Mark Swofford ???????,????????????.???Swofford ?????????!
G?nxiè Mark Swofford xi?nsheng de p?ny?n w?ngzhàn, b? p?ny?n yòngzuò xuéxí Zh?ngwén de g?ngjù. W? zhùhè Swofford xi?nsheng de g?ngzuò huòdé chéngg?ng!
Y?yán sh?rén y?ubié yú qínshòu,
wénzì sh? wénmíng bié yú y?mán,
jiàoyù sh? xi?njìn y?ubié yú luòhòu.
shí nián 107 suì
The New York Times has just published a profile of Zhou Youguang, who is often called “the father of Pinyin” (though he modestly prefers to stress that others worked with him): A Chinese Voice of Dissent That Took Its Time.
This profile focuses not only on Zhou’s role in the creation of Hanyu Pinyin but also on his political views, which he has become increasingly public with.
About Mao, he said in an interview: “I deny he did any good.” About the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre: “I am sure one day justice will be done.” About popular support for the Communist Party: “The people have no freedom to express themselves, so we cannot know.”
As for fostering creativity in the Communist system, Mr. Zhou had this to say, in a 2010 book of essays: “Inventions are flowers that grow out of the soil of freedom. Innovation and invention don’t grow out of the government’s orders.”
No sooner had the first batch of copies been printed than the book was banned in China.
Although the reporter’s assertion, following the PRC’s official figures, that “China all but stamp[ed] out illiteracy” is well wide of the mark, there is no denying Pinyin’s crucial role in this area. I recommend reading the whole article.