The Info List - CJK

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In internationalization, CJK is a collective term for the Chinese, Japanese, and Korean languages, all of which use Chinese characters and derivatives (collectively, CJK characters) in their writing systems. Occasionally, Vietnamese is included, making the abbreviation CJKV, since Vietnamese historically used Chinese characters
Chinese characters
as well. Collectively, the CJKV characters often include hànzì in Chinese, kanji, kana in Japanese, hanja, hangul in Korean, and hán tự or chữ nôm in Vietnamese.


1 Character repertoire 2 Encoding 3 Legal status 4 See also 5 References 6 External links

Character repertoire[edit] Chinese is written almost exclusively in Chinese characters. It requires over 3,000 characters for general literacy, but up to 40,000 characters for reasonably complete coverage. Japanese uses fewer characters — general literacy in Japan
can be expected with 1,945 characters. The use of Chinese characters
Chinese characters
in Korea
is becoming increasingly rare, although idiosyncratic use of Chinese characters
Chinese characters
in proper names requires knowledge (and therefore availability) of many more characters. Other scripts used for these languages, such as bopomofo and the Latin-based pinyin for Chinese, hiragana and katakana for Japanese, and hangul for Korean, are not strictly "CJK characters", although CJK character sets almost invariably include them as necessary for full coverage of the target languages. Until the early 20th century, Literary Chinese
Literary Chinese
was the written language of government and scholarship in Vietnam. Popular literature in Vietnamese was written in the chữ Nôm script, consisting of borrowed Chinese characters
Chinese characters
together with many characters created locally. By the end of the 1920s, both scripts had been replaced by writing in Vietnamese using the Latin-based Vietnamese alphabet. The sinologist Carl Leban (1971) produced an early survey of CJK encoding systems. Encoding[edit] The number of characters required for complete coverage of all these languages' needs cannot fit in the 256-character code space of 8-bit character encodings, requiring at least a 16-bit fixed width encoding or multi-byte variable-length encodings. The 16-bit fixed width encodings, such as those from Unicode
up to and including version 2.0, are now deprecated due to the requirement to encode more characters than a 16-bit encoding can accommodate— Unicode
5.0 has some 70,000 Han characters—and the requirement by the Chinese government that software in China
support the GB 18030
GB 18030
character set. Although CJK encodings have common character sets, the encodings often used to represent them have been developed separately by different East Asian governments and software companies, and are mutually incompatible. Unicode
has attempted, with some controversy, to unify the character sets in a process known as Han unification. CJK character encodings should consist minimally of Han characters plus language-specific phonetic scripts such as pinyin, bopomofo, hiragana, katakana and hangul. CJK character encodings include:

Big5 (the most prevalent encoding before Unicode
implemented) CCCII CNS 11643 (official standard of Republic of China) EUC-JP EUC-KR GB2312 (subset and predecessor of GB18030) GB18030
(mandated standard in the People's Republic of China) Giga Character Set (GCS) ISO 2022-JP KS C 5861 Shift-JIS TRON Unicode

The CJK character sets take up the bulk of the assigned Unicode
code space. There is much controversy among Japanese experts of Chinese characters about the desirability and technical merit of the Han unification process used to map multiple Chinese and Japanese character sets into a single set of unified characters.[citation needed] All three languages can be written both left-to-right and top-to-bottom (right-to-left and top-to-bottom in ancient documents), but are usually considered left-to-right scripts when discussing encoding issues. Legal status[edit] Libraries cooperated on encoding standards for JACKPHY characters in the early 1980s. According to Ken Lunde, the abbreviation "CJK" was a registered trademark of Research Libraries Group[1] (which merged with OCLC
in 2006). The trademark owned by OCLC
between 1987 and 2009 has now expired.[2] See also[edit]

Chinese character description languages Chinese character encoding Chinese input methods for computers CJK Compatibility Ideographs CJK strokes CJK Unified Ideographs Complex Text Layout languages
Complex Text Layout languages
(CTL) Input method editor Japanese language
Japanese language
and computers Korean language
Korean language
and computers List of CJK fonts Sinoxenic Variable-width encoding Vietnamese language
Vietnamese language
and computers


^ Ken Lunde, 1996 ^ Justia listing

This article is based on material taken from the Free On-line Dictionary of Computing prior to 1 November 2008 and incorporated under the "relicensing" terms of the GFDL, version 1.3 or later.

DeFrancis, John. The Chinese Language: Fact and Fantasy. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1990. ISBN 0-8248-1068-6. Hannas, William C. Asia's Orthographic Dilemma. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1997. ISBN 0-8248-1892-X (paperback); ISBN 0-8248-1842-3 (hardcover). Lemberg, Werner: The CJK package for LATEX2ε—Multilingual support beyond babel. TUGboat, Volume 18 (1997), No. 3—Proceedings of the 1997 Annual Meeting. Leban, Carl. Automated Orthographic Systems for East Asian Languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean), State-of-the-art Report, Prepared for the Board of Directors, Association for Asian Studies. 1971. Lunde, Ken. CJKV Information Processing. Sebastopol, Calif.: O'Reilly & Associates, 1998. ISBN 1-56592-224-7.

External links[edit]

CJKV: A Brief Introduction Lemberg CJK article from above, TUGboat18-3 On “CJK Unified Ideograph”, from Wenlin.com FGA: Unicode
CJKV character set rationalization

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