1958 (February 11) : The PRC adopts Hanyu Pinyin Fang'an (汉语拼音方案 - Scheme for the Chinese Phonetic Alphabet) as the official romanisation method.
1977 (III/8) : The official romanisation system for Chinese at the UN.
1981 (August 1) : Pinyin becomes an ISO standard (ISO 7098: Information and documentation -- Romanization of Chinese).
1991 (December 19) : ISO 7098 gets revised. The Technical committee responsible is ISO/TC46/SC2
It uses the western alphabet in combination with tones. (see also pinyin howto)
Beside not idicating the tone of a word there are two ways display the tones : to put the number of the tone at the end of the word (i.e. zhang3) or by writing the tone (i.e. zhǎng). Input methods don't necessary require to input the tone.
The advantage of pinyin as an input method is that it can be used on a standard (Western) keyboard. The only problem is 'ü', this cannot be inputted using a qwerty-keyboard. 'ü'; is mostly mapped to 'uu' or 'v'. The disadvantage is that the amount of corresponding characters for an input is large,
Example: 中国 > zhong + guo or zhong1 + guo2
(depending on the program to input it could also have been inputted as 'zhong guo' or 'zhongguo')
Where to put the pinyin tone marks
- A and e trump all other vowels and always take the tone mark. There are no Mandarin syllables that contain both a and e.
- In the combination ou, o takes the mark.
- In all other cases, the final vowel takes the mark.
For a compharison bewteen ShuangPin and pinyin, check my Jianpin page.
IME : Google released a pinyin IME. Google Pinyin is completely in Chinese and made to input simplified Chinese but it's also able to use traditional Chinese. To switch to traditional Chinese, go to the settings, dictionary and pick 'traditional Chinese'.
web : Taiwan Romanization (pinyin) and culture
web : Pinyin romanization of Mandarin Chinese
web : Where to put tone marks
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