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Understanding Japanese Information Processing

Understanding Japanese Information Processing by Ken Lunde Published by O'Reilly and Associates, Inc. ISBN 1-56592-043-0 Pages: 450 Price: $29.95

There are many complex issues surrounding the use of the Japanese language in computing. Unlike English, which has 26 letters in a single alphabet, Japanese has thousands of characters in three scripts. The issues around handling such an unwieldy collection of data are formidable and complex. Up to now, researching and understanding the relevant issues has been a difficult, if not unattainable task, especially to a person who doesn't read or speak Japanese.

Understanding Japanese Information Processing provides detailed information on all aspects of handling Japanese text on computer systems. It tries to bring all of the relevant information together in a single book, covering everything form the origins of modern-day Japanese to the latest information on specific emerging computer encoding standards.

Here is a sampling of the topics covered: The Japanese writing system, Japanese character set standards, Japanese encoding methods, Japanese input and output, Japanese code conversion techniques, Japanese code and text processing tools, Japanese e-mail.

In addition, there are more than fifteen appendices which provide additional reference material, such as a code conversion table, character set tables, mapping tables, an extensive list of software sources, and a glossary.

Ken Lunde is the Project Manager for Japanese Font Production at Adobe Systems, Inc., a leading manufacturer of computer-based font technologies. The author also created and maintains an on-line document entitled JAPAN.INF, which has become an invaluable resource for people trying to understand the issues involved in dealing with Japanese text. The book expands on the topics covered in JAPAN.INF, and contains a rich complement of figures, tables, and lists unavailable in the on-line document.

Understanding Japanese Information Processing is able to both describe the Japanese language generally and cover very detailed specifics about implementing the language on computers. Anyone with only a casual interest in languages will find the book engaging. A programmer interested in writing a computer program which will handle the Japanese language will find the book indispensable.

Past news for O'Reilly Media, Inc.

CJKV Information Processing, Second Edition

The second edition of Ken Lunde's CJKV Information Processing (O'Reilly Media, Inc., 2009, ISBN 13: 9780596514471) has been released in print and PDF versions. The second edition has been thoroughly updated to provide web and application developers with the latest techniques and tools for disseminating information directly to audiences in East Asia. It reflects the considerable impact that Unicode, XML, OpenType and other modern technologies have had on East Asian text processing in recent years.

Registration opens for EuroOSCON

Widespread adoption of open source technologies by European governments and organizations has put Europe in a leadership position in the open source space. To continue championing open source in an international forum, O'Reilly Media has launched its first O'Reilly European Open Source Convention (EuroOSCON). Registration has just opened for EuroOSCON, which will be held in Amsterdam October 17-20, 2005. Discounted registration pricing is in effect until August 29.

EuroOSCON 2005 targets the specific needs of European developers, programmers and systems and network administrators, helping them to deliver the benefits of open source technology in all its variations to their companies and organizations. The program committee has assembled tutorials, sessions, panel discussions and on-stage conversations focusing on all aspects of building applications, services and systems that take advantage of the open source platform with an emphasis on practical skill-building. For more information, visit:

CJKV Information Processing enters second printing

Ken Lunde's ”CJKV Information Processing” (O'Reilly, 1999, ISBN 1-56592-224-7) has gone into its second printing with some minor changes and corrections. ”CJKV Information Processing” provides a comprehensive survey of Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese writing systems, methods of entering text, methods of presenting text, tools and programming techniques. It also covers such topics as JIS, ISO and Internet standards; multilingual text on the World Wide Web; Java; SGML; XML; and Unicode.

World Wide Lexicon project to provide multilingual database

US software designer, Brian McConnell, plans to build the World Wide Lexicon (WWL) project, a multilingual translation database, to provide translations of the many languages not included in existing on-line translation databases. McConnell is releasing a new distributed computer program, which works like programs such as SETI@home. Multilingual volunteers who download the software will be asked to provide short translations when the program detects that the computer user is less busy. McConnell hopes that people who speak more unusual languages will volunteer as translators.

The first version of the program will be demonstrated at the O'Reilly Emerging Technologies Conference in California in May 2002. But some experts are already unsure about the practicality of the system, especially in terms of quality assurance. McConnell, however, hopes to develop an automatic system for peer review, to ensure that translations are accurate.

To get the WWL database started, McConnell has designed a ”spider” program to roam the Web and select common words from foreign Web sites. These will be sent to relevant volunteers for translation. When a sufficiently large database has been built, users will be able to download another client program and search for different words. Words that are not found will be sent to volunteers for translation. The WWL has been designed using the Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP), so it can be integrated into other computer applications, such as an add-on to Web browsers.

Second edition of Programming Perl released by O'Reilly

O'Reilly & Associates announced the second edition of their best-selling Nutshell Handbook Programming Perl. Co-authored by Larry Wall, the creator of Perl, this book is the authoritative guide to Perl version 5. Perl is free, easy to get (Programming Perl tells how and where), and widely used. Programmers use Perl to easily manipulate text, files and processes. Perl provides a more concise and readable way to do many jobs that were formerly accomplished by programming with C or one of the shells. Version 5 of Perl includes object-oriented programming facilities.

This heavily revised second edition contains a full explanation of the features in Perl version 5.003. Contents include: an introduction to Perl; explanations of the language and its syntax; Perl functions; Perl library modules; the use of references in Perl; how to use Perl's object-oriented features; invocation options for Perl itself, and also for the utilities that come with Perl.

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