display Asian Characters in director
display Asian Characters

  display Asian Characters

The general question is: what I need to do to be able to display Asian (Chinese,
Japanese, Korean, Thai, etc) and European (Russian, etc) in both platforms
(Macintosh and Windows)?


That's a broad subject--I'll see what I can do in a few paragraphs.

You can use English, French, or German Director to display most Western European
languages. It's missing some characters for some Scandinavian languages, but
you're good in English, French, Spanish, German, Dutch, Italian, Portuguese,

The projector will run on just about any system--computers started in the West,
and retain their Western bias. I recommend you embed all your fonts, though.

To develop for Asian languages, specifically Chinese (S), Chinese (T), Korean,
and Japanese, you will need the Japanese version of Director. Build your Chinese
projector on a Chinese-enabled system, Korean on a Korean-enabled system, and so

There are a couple ways to get an Asian system--for simplicity, I'll use
Japanese. For Apple, you buy the Japanese system, or the Japanese Language Kit.
On Windows, you can get Japanese Windows, or you can buy an add-in like Twin
Bridge, which gives your system Japanese capabilities (and, coincidentally,
Chinese and Korean).

Regardless of how you make the projector, though, it will *not* run on European-
language systems unless you convert the text to bitmaps. The encoding system for
CCJK is just too different to be compatible (for now, at least, until Unicode is
more widely accepted). Because of the thousands of characters in those
languages, they use a multibyte encoding system (often mistakenly referred to as
"double-byte"). Only Asian systems are capable of handling that encoding.

As to other languages such as Greek, Turkish, Arabic, Czech, Cyrillic, and the
like, you're unfortunately out of luck. You would have to hack a font that
conforms to ISO 8859.1 standards, uses the right Windows code page, etc., and
embed it. Still, you would be out of luck on input.

Interestingly, some less widespread languages like Lao, Khmer, Burmese, and
Tibetan have adopted fonts that will work on an English system, though again you
need to embed them.

As the computer world stands now, it is a tower of babel. Unicode will go a long
way towards fixing that, though it only addresses characters, not mode
(vertical, right-to-left, bi-directional).

Of course, once you get beyond the linguistic issues, you have to deal with
cultural and geographic issues such as date and time format, decimal and
thousands separators, currency, and the like. These can vary within a language--
French-speaking Canadians use dollars, while European French use francs.

For more specific information, I advise you check out Nadine Kano's latest book--
she's written a series on localization for Windows. It's a treasure trove of

Kerry Thompson
Learning Network

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