[tlhIngan Hol] xifan hol: k and q

Daniel Dadap daniel at dadap.net
Thu Jun 7 05:33:39 PDT 2018

> On Jun 7, 2018, at 07:16, De'vID <de.vid.jonpin at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Sat, 2 Jun 2018 at 21:08, nIqolay Q <niqolay0 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> boQwI' gives you an option of using k -> {q} or {Q}, is that something feasible on your end? 
>> I prefer to use boQwI' with k -> {Q}, since I can just use q for {q}. But I have noticed that some fonts use k for {q} and q for {Q} (or, technically, they use K for {q} and Q for {Q}, since the fonts map pIqaD to capital letters). I think I might be in the minority on this one. 
> Everyone keeps talking about fonts but that's only relevant if you're typesetting {pIqaD}, presumably on your PC (or laptop). 
> Many people (maybe most, in some demographics) are primarily on their mobile devices. The advantage of the "k" -> {Q} mapping is that it's effectively "optional" on soft keyboards: if you type Klingon as you normally would, you wouldn't even notice it was enabled. However, {Q} and {'} are on shifted keys, and mapping "k" and "z" to them allows a user to type them without shifting, which is a nuisance on a small device. It's also handy to be able to type "x" for {tlh} and drop "h" when its presence is unambiguous (like after "c"). With the "k" -> {Q} mapping, you can leave "xifan hol" mode on and the typical user (who knows nothing about font mappings) won't be confused when they're typing things in as-is. That's why that's the default, and swapping {q} and {Q} (i.e., "k" -> {q}, "q" -> {Q}) is an advanced option.

Yes, that is the thing I like about k=Q: it’s possible to implement a parser that can handle “normal” orthography (which I hate, by the way: I was trying to think of the worst thing you could possibly write in a sans-serif font the other day and came up with “lIlIllI'”: anybody have any other favorites?) or xifan hol transparently.

I think for the particular project I have in mind, since the xifan hol encoding serves a practical role rather than a purely convenience based one (protecting the text from being case-mangled and avoiding problems with the qaghwI'), and it’s mandatory rather than optional, there’s really no practical advantage to either mapping. I’ll probably go with k=q, since that’s what I’ve already been using and it does seem to be more established based on the small sample size of Klingon software I’ve encountered so far.

> -- 
> De'vID
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