Tuesday, March 22, 2005
DHTML Hanyu Pinyin to Hanzi Converter
I needed a simple way to type a small amount of Chinese characters. I did a bit of looking around for a Chinese "input method" for Linux, and they all seemed very hard to install/configure. Many also only had documentation in Chinese for some reason.
Eventually I thought "why don't I build it myself?". After all, I know I can get the pinyin to hanzi conversion information from unicode.org. I just needed to build a UI around it. So that's what I did.
By the way, Hanyu pinyin (or just "pinyin" for short) is the standard romanization system for Mandarin Chinese in mainland China, and it mostly consists of characters that are relatively easy to type on a US keyboard. Hanzi is what Chinese characters are called in Chinese.
With that I was then able to build a simple Hanyu Pinyin to Hanzi converter.
Note that this isn't meant to be a full substitute for a real Chinese input method, but it does the job if you only need a few characters, and it's a lot easier to install.