A Gregg Shorthand font

Has anyone come across a font that is made to resemble Gregg Shorthand?  I have been seeking somthing like that.
I realize that the letters would not join (connect) properly but it would be an interesting project.
Thanks,
    Jason

(by jasonstracner2 for everyone)

31 comments Add yours
  1. Psetus has been working on writing software that will convert text into perfectly joined Gregg.  You can download a free brainstorm version from the Documents section — "SH List Generator.zip" or something like that.  Hmm.. I guess he took down Greggory.zip.  Other than that, no, there are no Gregg fonts in existence as far as we can tell.   _________________________________ Go, Speedwriter, go!

  2. Does this program work like a Japanese Input Method Editor — where the program parses your sentence, makes its best guess on what the sentence should be, placing it on the page "tentatively," until you "confirm" that it is correct? If incorrect, the IME allows you to select the correct form from a dropdown menu.   This kind of program would be entirely hot, and would allow for easy publishing of books and other material without the need of a professional shorthand writer to do the writing.   Psetus, have you worked with an Input Method Editor, for Korean, Japanese, Chinese? I'm excited about this.   Kindest, Stenomouse Erstwhile LPM at Microsoft

  3. It would most certainly be difficult. I think the ideal shorthand font system would be like the Japanese IME. You type the word phonetically, and it shows each stroke separately until you press enter to draw from a huge fontset of every Gregg word, assembled a bit like the Korean fontset. However, this might prove problematic for new words in our language. It would also take quite a while and no one has that kind of time, right? Improper phrases like "Thanking you for your kind attention to this matter, and hoping to hear from you at an early date, I remain Yours very truly" (th u f k i ten sh ths m a t nd o p e r f m u t [reversed e] d a mn u v t). You would have to have to split it into "thuf kitnsh thsmat ndoping erfmu t[reversed e]dt [reversed a]mnuvt."

    Making good IME software that produces natural-looking outlines would require lots of work. 🙂

    —Andw. Owen

  4. I was thinking of something more simplistic. I was reading something about the 'Shaw alphabet' and saw some nice Shaw fonts. That made me think that there should be a font that sort of resembles the characters that are used in Gregg shorthand. I was thinking that there might be such a novelty somewhere on the internet. But now you have sparked my interest in a program that could generate shorthand using keyboard input. I was thinking that VML could be a good display system for this. Here is an example of a VML drawing editor: http://www.symbols.net/articles/vml/editor.htm  (This is nothing more than a glorified html page. It just uses special tags to make it all work.)
    There are lots of examples of VML tools that are freely available on the net. All that is needed is an interface to convert keystrokes into VML and the resulting VML back into the keystroke characters (for re-editing). This program could be just a simple webpage that you browse to and type into. You just memorize which buttons to push in order to get the VML editor to output the correct drawing strokes to produce your shorthand strokes. Very interesting – I wonder how many keys would be needed to map all of the possible shorthand strokes to keyboard keys. Anyone have an answer to this? With the 26 letters of the alphabet counting lower and uppercase that gives up 52 keystrokes that could be mapped. Would there be more than 52 strokes needed to do this? I guess it could be something like pressing e to draw a small clockwise loop and shift+e to draw a counterclockwise loop – and so on. I wonder if very fast speeds could be reached with such a system. Also a simple font might be fun to have too. Like when you type the letter “o” it displays like a “u”, an “n” would be “-“, and so forth. As a computer programmer I might be able to make some of this happen if there is any interest in having such a program.

  5. Jason!!
    You have piqued my interest! I have been thinking
    about such a program for some time now, but I know little to nothing of computer
    programming.
    I hope you have some help with this project, and
    alert me if I can assist (clerically) in any way!
    Janet

  6. We are all able to read both cursive handwriting and printed text in English and likely in what ever languges in which we are literate   Why not have an alphabet as Jason originally suggested — a computer generated typeface would not look like cursive Gregg, but why should it? Reading unjoined text is clearly second nature to us all or we'd have to write all our posts in cursive.

  7. An advantage of using an IME to pre-process your text imput, is that you can type just as you always do — no abbreviations or single key-to-character mapping necessary. You type in your text, the parser parses it and based upon programmed syntax rules, it determines the most likely components for the sentence. You can then highlight individual elements, and make modifications as you wish. We know that relatively high speeds can be obtained with this method. However, it does require a huge character set/ font set, and some rather robust rules.   The question one is inclined to ask has to do with practicality, though. Thinking in terms of cost-to-benefit, can you justify the investment in time and money to create such a tool that only a few folks will use?   The IME approach has worked with numerous "double-byte" languages, such as Arabic, Chinese, Hebrew, Japanese, Korean. But, in terms of cost-to-benefit, perhaps Jason's VML approach is more realistic.   Kindest, Stenomouse Gregg Speedwriter Wannabe

  8. For your referencing pleasure:   Related post: A Text to Gregg Translator Related post: Greggory Demo! Related post: "Greggory" Shorthand List Generator Demo!! Related post: Gregg Shorthand & Computers   __________________________________ Go, Speedwriter, go!

  9. I've thought about shorthand printing systems back when typewriters were state of the art. It wouldn't be that hard to have a word or a phrase linked to a specific string of letters or numbers (or symbols). So 'thank you for your letter' could be the shorthand phrase: th-u-f-u-le (in Simplified) which could be imput as: thufule

  10. Yes, you could have it do that, if you wished to use some sort of abbreviation for typing. Or, you could simply map the correct phrases/outlines to regular qwerty writing, no need to abbreviate at the keyboard if you preferred not. I'd rather not have to relearn my keyboard to accomodate shorthand input, but certainly that could be an option. You could also use radio buttons to select which version of Gregg you wished to output, but this would require separate dictionaries/fonts. My guess is that it would be best to develop for one version, and if your project is successful, you could develop for other versions later.   My guess is that Anniversary or Simplified would be the most likely candidates.   Cheers, Stenomouse Gregg Speedwriter Wannabe

  11.   Wow!  I found this free downloadable Gregg font on the McGraw-Hill website.  Looks like they're a step ahead of us.  Sike–I drew it in MS Paint.  Might be fun for sending secret emails, or IMing, but I'm not sure if it would be useful for much else.  Can you read what I wrote?   ______________________________  

  12. Oh, sorry, I was just trying to be funny; there's no font on McGraw-Hill.  Do you see the funny looking font at the very beginning and end of the message though?  It's a graphic, so should show up.   ____________________________________ Go, Speedracer, go!

  13. I was going to try and start making a Gregg font today but it seems that the software that is required to do that costs money.  I thought I could find a free program that would create a font but I couldn't locate anything like that.  Ugh!   Also, I don't see where I can download a copy of the program shown at the link that was posted called "A Text To Gregg Translator".  It looks nice.  I would like to try it out.

  14. This all seems like lots of fun, but is there a seious purpose? This discussion seems about fifty years too late. The invention of the stenography machine made possible the writing of letters, words, phrases, brief forms and whole sentences with the least amount of symbols (truly a secret code for those who are not trained in its use), and as far as the computer goes, I have seen young students type at a pace that would give stenographers whiplash! Since most of the Alphabet shorthand systems seem to base their symbols, abbreviated spelling, and brief forms on existant lightline and shaded shorthand systems, it seems to me that that would be the way to go. Mewonders why when so many allegations of excessive memorization are made against early Gregg (unjustified in my opinion), and since one is constantly striving to increase speed in Gregg, and since even in the old days typists saw shorthand and typing as separate skills both requiring practice, what does all this discussion profit us?       DOC

  15. Stenomouse: Thanks for the info! I see the Bible has been done in Pitman but probably not Gregg. That might be a nice project. Using shorthand for all sorts of miscellaneous reading is of course useful. I have most of the shorthand versions of famous novels published decades ago. I see your reasoning for producing learning materials and of course for the avid learner there never is enough. So all interested parties go to it. As a labor of love one does not have to worry about how many people will use it.The personal challenge, fulfilment and love of the art is rewarding in itself!    DOC

  16.   __DOC__
    Thanks for the info! —-   Not at all, Doc. Just a bit of philosophizin' and wishful thinkin' on my part.   __DOC__
    I see the Bible has been done in Pitman but probably not Gregg. That might be a nice project. —–   Yes! I've often wondered if this had been done, and if not why not.   __DOC__ Using shorthand for all sorts of miscellaneous reading is of course useful. I have most of the shorthand versions of famous novels published decades ago. —–   I'm actually interested in learning what all was published. I have a fairly large selection of texts and several lit pieces, but don't have a good feel for how extensive Gregg literature might have been.   __DOC__ I see your reasoning for producing learning materials and of course for the avid learner there never is enough. —–   Yepa! The greater the exposure to different kinds of literature, I'm guessing the greater facility with shorthand.   __DOC__ As a labor of love one does not have to worry about how many people will use it.The personal challenge, fulfilment and love of the art is rewarding in itself!  —–   May skill happily meet with opportunity here! I'd love to see a robust shorthand tool.   Cheers,
    Stenomouse 

  17. My idea wouldn't actually need a lot of new learning. A keyboard letter or combination or symbol would match the Gregg symbol. So th would indicate the 'ith'; u would indicated 'u' etc. There would be a few conventions to learn for left-vs-right 's' and 'th' etc. Brian

  18. ___BJB___
    My idea wouldn't actually need a lot of new learning. A keyboard letter or combination or symbol would match the Gregg symbol. So th would indicate the 'ith'; u would indicated 'u' etc. There would be a few conventions to learn for left-vs-right 's' and 'th' etc. —–   Hmm. Why would you wish to do this, if you could simply map to normal keyboard input? Isn't it easier if "ith"at the keyboard yields "ith" in Gregg, and so forth? What is the advantage of using abbreviated keystrokes or special symbols?   Why not let the computer do the heavy lifting? The advantage to using the regular keyboard input is that you don't have to guess at what the outline might be or the "spelling" of the word in Gregg if you don't absolutely know it. Rather, the computer presents the statistically "most-likely-to-be-correct form, or you can choose from a selection of candidates in a drop-down menu. One who might not know the keystroke abbreviation for a particular outline might be able to recognize the correct outline from a list of candidates, provided using regular qwerty input.   By contrast, using special abbreviations assumes that you already know the "spelling" of the outline in Gregg. This may or may not be the case.   Then again, if your program has a few bells and whistles, it could include options for both a standard qwerty or "special Gregg" keyboard mapping. This same approach is used with Japanese. While a rather large percentage of Japanese prefer to use the English keyboard for text input (because they can then avoid having to learn two separate keyboards), there are those who prefer a Japanese keyboard for input because it saves them keystrokes (because nearly every Japanese character is a consonant-vowel combination).   Cheers, Stenomouse

  19. Above comment is well taken. I think we're coming at this from 2 different angles. I am thinking that (1) I want to retain a high degree of control over the output–for example, whether a string of words should appear as a phrase or as separate words–and (2) that the fewest possible keystrokes results in the least time for keyboard entry.   Your idea sounds more like a computer program that would read text and then call up the correct shorthand outline(s), perhaps making independent decisions about which of multiple correct forms could be used. The probability function sounds like speech recognition, which is very fine (and very contemporary); my thoughts–which date back now at least 2 decades–were more toward giving me (or other users) front-end control over output while saving time during entry.   About 11 years ago, I wrote a macro in WordPerfect that let me modulate the various permutations of Greek vowels with its various accents. There are also certain chanages that can occur with consonants, and I included those in my marco. I had considered attempting to use a combination of one or more of ALT, CTRL, SHIFT but found that there weren't enough permutations. I had also attempted to write macros that would change a Greek vowel by placing a diatricial mark after the letter had been entered; this approach proved unworkable because it failed to give access to the full range of characters needed for classical Greek and becuase its memory load was too great.   My Greek macro brought up a dialogue box in WordPerfect that instructed the user to specific (1) which Greek vowel was needed, (2) which breathing (if either) for the vowel was needed, (3) which of 3 accents (if any) was needed, and (4) whether an iota subscript was needed. So, for example, if the user needed a Greek letter alpha with smooth breathing and circumflex accent with an iota subscript, the user would called up the macro and into the dialogue box type: "asci," where a=alpha, s=smooth breathing, c=circumflex accent, i=iota subscript.   This approach worked best given the vast number of permutations possible and also reduced the memory load on the user to only a few keystrokes. I used this macro extensively during 3 semesters of New Testament Greek and in other exegetical writing.   Anyway, it was from this point of view that I was coming at the shorthand question. Brian

  20. Has there ever been a strong proposal for a AGS (ASCII Gregg Shorthand)?  It looks like that is what would be needed first.  This would be the standard way to enter Gregg shorthand into a computer without using special fonts or drawing programs.  AGS could then be used by programs to create/draw graphical representations.  It could also just be used by itself to express shorthand.   If this has never been done then I suggest we put our heads together and come up with this.  My only recommendation on this is that it be as compact as possible to aid in entering text into a computer as high speeds.  I suggest a single character for each stroke (using both upper and lowercase if that is necessary).  Also, I think there should be a character to show disjointing (like when you put a t stroke at end of a work to express -ed).   The obvious letters would be aeiourtpsdfghjklzvbnm.  Maybe "-" would be the disjointing character.  I am not sure about the dot that shows -ing or the backwards s (maybe z).  I am sure that there are other stokes that I am not thinking of right now.   It seems to me that AGS might spark people's interests as a way to enter text into a computer at a faster rate of speed because it has further applications as a way to write on paper.   Ideas?

  21. That's so cool, Andrew. I did a similar thing, tho not nearly as extensively, and used the x as sh. I love those caps O & U for tilted o & u and q Q for over and under ith.   Do people really write the s stroke on a tilt? when using it for an x? I rely totally on context to tell me when I'm reading an x. Even my DJS manuals don't show much of a tilt, if any, after the introduction of the concept of tilt for the x sound.   Brian, I love that idea of crossing the x, but doesn't it slow you down?

  22. Crossing the x doesn't slow the writer down to any significant extent. Since you already rely successfully on context, reserve crossing x's for outlines where absolutely mandatory or where you're not confident that context alone will be sufficient. Brian

  23. Great job, Andrew.  I think this should be put out for public comment as a proposal to adopt this standard as the official representation for Gregg shorthand using ASCII.  We might even attempt to get some standardization organization to bless this as official.  – Good idea?   Would it be alright if I put out a small website for this purpose?

  24. I just added these two files to the documents section.

    GreggShorthandFont.ttf
    GreggShorthandFont-Key.jpg (This shows how the font is used.)

    I found a free program called DoubleType that let me create the font. If anyone wants the source code for creating/editing the font with DoubleType just let me know.

Leave a Reply