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hunxueer

"alphabetical order" in chinese

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hunxueer

this is a rather random question, and i wasn't sure of the appropriate section for it, but i figure it's something we run into while living here, so here goes:

oftentimes we run into lists of cities--for instance, on train schedules, bus schedules, on websites where there are portals for different cities. in english, or, i presume, other romanized languages, these lists would be ordered by alphabet. but in chinese, how does this work? does everybody just have to scan the (sometimes rather long) list to find what they're looking for? i see on web sites it oftentimes appears to be ordered from biggest to smallest city, but even that's arbitrary and not constant. what is the ordering scheme in a language like chinese?

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muyongshi

For cities if they are not alphabetical, which alphabetical is used for the most part. Even the dictionaries are alphabetical and if someone grew up w/ at least a basic education they know pinyin so it's not that difficult, I have seen them arranged first by province and then by size. So yeah if it's a podunk area someone would just have to scan.

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skylee

Besides arranging things according to pinyin, another method is to arrange names according to the number of strokes, and then by the stroke order, e.g for all characters of 7 strokes, the ones start with a dot come first, then those start with a horizontal, then those start with a vertical, etc.

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muyongshi

Where else would that be used other than dictionary? I think I've seen something else arranged by that but I can't remember what it was....

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roddy

Not sure, but I think I've maybe seen it used for order of authors' names on journal articles?

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gougou

The first time I installed a Chinese language pack, sorting by stroke order was the only option I had (e.g. in Excel). Now, I have the choice between either - not sure what changed though.

Oh, and the alphabetical sorting is not particularly clever - Chongqing for instance ends up at the bottom of the list (as Zhongqing).

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skylee

telephone directories

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shibole

gougou: could excel be using "bpmf" order vs. "abcd"?

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gougou
gougou: could excel be using "bpmf" order vs. "abcd"?
I wouldn't know what bpmf sorting order looked like, but I guess it should have been based on radicals, e.g. all the characters with the 一 radical appearing together.

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Lu

Bopomofo is also used for ordening CDs in music shops here in Taiwan. It's not based on radicals but on sounds, like pinyin, but the order of the bopomofo 'alphabet' is very different than that of the Latin alphabet. (It goes bo po mo fo, de te ne le, etc.)

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fireball9261

If you are in Taiwan, a lot of lists would be ordered by bopomofo (zhu4 yin fu2 hao4), especially the dictionary. You can use both radicals + number of strokes as well as zhu yin fu hao to check for words.

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