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X-SAMPA confusion (was: Introduction)

From:Ray Brown <ray.brown@...>
Date:Thursday, November 18, 2004, 15:15
On Wednesday, November 17, 2004, at 11:00 , Rodlox wrote:

> ----- Original Message ----- > From: Geoff Horswood <geoffhorswood@...> > To: <CONLANG@...> > Sent: Wednesday, November 17, 2004 11:05 PM > Subject: Re: Introduction > > >>> >>> I hate to be the bearer of bad news...but some folks here are trying to >>> replace X-SAMPA. > >> Aaarggh!! I just try to learn a system and they go and replace it!! ;P! > > that was pretty much my reaction.
No one on Conlang is in a position to replace X-SAMPA (Extended Speech Assessment Methods Phonetic Alphabet). SAMPA itself was drawn up between 1988 and 1991 by the SAM consortium to form the basis of a machine-readable phonetic alphabet for international purposes. X-SAMPA is an extension of SAMPA suggested by J.C. Wells of University College. London, in order that all IPA symbols may be mapped into 7-bit ASCII. Neither SAMPA nor X-SAMPA are have ever been norms on Conlang and they cannot, therefore, be "replaced".
> >> With what? Reasons?? > > if I understand, so they can call it "conlang x-sampa".
With respect, that is a silly, cynical remark. =================================================== On Wednesday, November 17, 2004, at 09:18 , Andreas Johansson wrote:
> Quoting Geoff Horswood <geoffhorswood@...>: > >> Aaarggh!! I just try to learn a system and they go and replace it!! ;P! >> With what? Reasons?? > > The reason is that certain features of X-SAMPA are widely perceived as > very > annoying. The system mostly used here is called "CXS", and is in most > respects > very close to X-SAMPA.
Partly so, but also for historic reasons. Once upon a time there were many systems for "IPA ASCII" (there probably still are). When long years ago I joined Conlang, the prevailing system here was one known as _Kirshenbaum_ [sic] but it had two drawbacks: i. it was designed principally for dealing with English and used a system of tags between angled brackets to denote more 'exotic' sounds; ii. Evan Kirshenbaum did not develop the system further. Gradually over the years, especially as more non-anglophones joined the list, X-SAMPA became more widely used. However, some Kirshenbaum features tended to survive, especially:
> Actually, I thought you were using it, since you transcribed Kazakh 'a' > as [&], > which represents the the vowel of English "cat" in CXS. In X-SAMPA it is > a low > front rounded vowel.
Yes, in Kirshenbaum [&] is the RP English 'a' in _cat_, in both SAMPA and X-SAMPA the symbol for that sound [{] thus in SAMPA/ X-SAMPA English _cat_ is written /k{t/. But in X-SAMPA [&] is the IPA _capital_ OE ligature, a low front rounded vowel, lower than the sound of French 'eu' in _neuf_ which is lower-case oe ligature and represented in both X-SAMPA and CXS as [9]. It is the _rounded_ version of X-SAMPA and CXS [a] and occurs in Danish _drømme_. In in CXS the sound is written [&\]. The result was that *in pactice* a mixed system was being used and occasionally misunderstanding did arise, particularly over the symbol [&] which some read as [æ] and other read as [Œ]. This was clearly unsatisfactory. CXS (Conlang X-SAMPA) was codified in order to regularize the position and to *avoid confusion*. IMHO those who are responsible for CXS deserve praise, not sneers.
> If that really is what you meant, Kazakh phonology and > spelling is rather weirder than I thought ...
Indeed. I had assumed _s&ljemjets1z bje_ was using CXS rather than X-SAMPA. But now I am confused. Is Geoff really using X-SAMPA and the first vowel of _s&ljemjets1z_ *rounded*? That would be weird vowel harmony. Ray =============================================== =============================================== Anything is possible in the fabulous Celtic twilight, which is not so much a twilight of the gods as of the reason." [JRRT, "English and Welsh" ]


Rodlox <rodlox@...>X-SAMPA confusion (sorry)