Has anyone seen a digitalized list of the Primitive Elements? Or a digitalized list of kanji radicals? Is there an actual font that includes either of those?
Do post-third edtion RTK book versions have the Primitive Elements printed--not hand drawn?
In my copy of the book, the primatives all appear to be printed---not hand drawn. I'd love to know of a font that would allow me to print radicals....Have you ever heard of such a thing?
Pangolin asked me,
"Do you mean a font containing the radicals on the yellowbridge.com site?"
No, I don't. RTK primitive elements are not the same as radicals although some correspondence may be found.
Someone I believe earlier replied to my inquiry about later RTK editions, saying that the Primitive Elements are printed as opposed to hand drawn as in the earlier RTK. This means that there must be a font; otherwise they could not be printed. It could be the case that the publisher created one just for RTK; or the PEs are essentially radicals and found in Asian fonts.
If you notice, some of the primitive elements are not typed in a full square. For example, the primitive for "kazoo" (page 189 in RTK 4th ed) looks like it was just cut from "discriminating" 識. And it's pretty clear that this is one of the primitives Heisig invented... Other primitives that look like they were just stripped from other kanji include "float" (p. 158), (which it seems is a simplification of double-fiesta), "apron" (p. 171), "piglets" (p. 208), "Pegasus" (p. 215), and "fledgling" (p. 242). All of these are clearly not "full-size", which makes it seem as though they were simply cut from other characters (and they appear in that exact form in another kanji on the same or next page). So it seems these characters are not actually part of any (available) font, and were manipulated as Pangolin suggested.
The primitives that are typed in a full square are either Chinese radicals or kanji in their own right (mostly rare I'd imagine, or Heisig would have just assigned them a number), so it makes sense that these characters would be in a font. But as to the ones Heisig created, it is logical that those characters were custom-made.
Edited: 2006-08-12, 10:18 pm
Actually, my interest was in setting up Supermemo to learn the Japanese names (and numbers) of the 214 traditional radicals. Therefore, the fact that a unicode font may have those radicals in the font (which apparently they do since they show up on the website, and rikaichan tells me the unicode value of them), then I can do that, if I want to. I want to finish RTK1 and possibly up to 3007 kanji before I bother with that.
Edited: 2006-08-12, 10:53 pm
Thanks for info given here about fonts. I have since found an easier solution for me in wanting digitalized Primitives, which may help others as well. Check out the archive at Remembering_The_Kanji, a Yahoo group, for the digital file, Heisig_complete_v3.doc kindly posted by penthisilea2005. The file lists the elements for each RTK1 kanji, including primitives. (Thank you, penthisilea2005, wherever you are.)
So all you need do is copy and past the desired Primitive into your own study notes. So far this file has had the ones I have needed. I am assuming that will be the case for the rest of the Primitives that I want.
Nix that. It's a nice file but what I got were probably radicals and even then the file lists many elements with just the keywords, not the graphics. In regard to Primitives, it's back to the drawing board ...
To avoid problems with copyright infringement,
maybe someone can just submit handwritten
images of the Heisig primitives.
You probably wont' ever need to be able to
copy-and-paste the primitives anyway. So
I think custom images would work.
Each to their own. Copy and paste primitives would suit me just fine. It would give great pleasure in making complete study notes, at the very least.
I can't see any copyright infringement. First, there is such a thing called "fair use" which would apply. But even if it didn't, the graphics we are talking about are in the public domain--most of them being radicals. The others may have other Japanese sources as RTK indicates.
Actually I have resigned myself that a digitalized list of RTK primitives is not to be found. Those that are radicals--I already have. But an incomplete list does not move me.
Thank you for your post anyway.
Kanji, you can probably stack different radicals in photoshop or illustrator or maybe that can be done in Word, to get the "radical combos" primitives.
Regarding copy-and-paste solutions, these would either involve bitmaps (as Fabrice says) or characters in fonts.
Regarding the latter, official radicals and kanji are defined as unicode code points, and each individual font implements a particular set of code points. Probably the biggest reason why this hasn't already been done is that Heisig primitives haven't been allocated code points by the unicode standards body.
I think it's technically possible to assign code points for the primitives in one of the "private use" code point ranges, then use a font editor to create your own true type primitives, perhaps basing them in part on existing characters that contain those primitives. You could then create your own "Kanji Plus Primitives" font.
This would work as long as everyone installed this font and used it instead of their standard kanji font. There'd also have to be general agreement on the code points used for each primitive. And you'd have to base your work on an opensource kanji font (if such a thing exists), because I'm sure you wouldn't be able to redistribute any font containing data derived from a copyrighted font. Finally, I'm sure it would be a hell of a lot of work.
?????, you're very right and kind to mention it. I put that off though because I imagine it would be a big task. I had hoped it might have been done already; or it could be collectively done through this site. Of course, we have the radicals, so that reduces the number of primitives to about a hundred or so. If I didn't have a day job, I might have had it done already, ha, ha.
Fabrice, sorry but when I copy-pasted your name in katana, it was transposed in transit! I don't know why that happened when it looked fine in my own window.
I began such a project inspired by your request, KANJI. I am interested in font design and have an ancient copy of Fontographer from about 1998 (which is still the current version for Windows! It only works properly on Windows 9x, so I had to create a Virtual Machine on my XP system to run it!).
I made bit-mapped images from a generic Japanese "text book" font (the type used in the stroke order diagrams in RTK1) and, unless the primitive was already a character in it's own right, I erased the unwanted portions of the character. The resulting bitmaps are imported into Fontographer and "autotraced" into the vector graphics form used for scalable fonts.
As for coding, does it really matter? I started by putting them in the order they appear in the index of RTK1, starting with code 21 ("!" in ASCII), avoiding any code clusters usually reserved for control codes. Fontographer doesn't handle double-byte Unicode schemes, by the way.
Anyway, I'm getting ahead of myself, because I'm not sure if I can find the time to complete it. As everyone has guessed, it IS a lot of work! I think I have several dozen so far. I may be encouraged to finish it, if people think it is worthwhile, but I don't think I would have a use for it myself.
(By the way, the displayed and printed result is superb, I impressed myself!)
Good work! I've got a spreadsheet that I'm working on, but it is just the 214 traditional radicals, which have a pretty good representation in the MS Gothic font. There are even a few of the "variations" of the radicals, but not all of them, at least not that I know of.
If anybody wants to look at what I've done, and maybe help out with more variations of radicals that I haven't found yet, let me know. I welcome the assistance, and naturally am willing to donate the work.
Bitmaps are resolution dependent. I would suggest to use the radicals found in chinese fonts, using the unicode website to find the radicals, and then stack them in a vector program like Illustrator. Then they can be resized, parts can be masked/clipped and if necessary missing bits can be added, all in vector mode. Then you can output bitmaps from that in any resolution.