Jump to content
Chinese-forums.com
Learn Chinese in China

  • Why you should look around

    Since 2003, Chinese-forums.com has been helping people learn Chinese faster and get to China sooner. Our members can recommend beginner textbooks, help you out with obscure classical vocabulary, and tell you where to get the best street food in Xi'an. And we're friendly about it too. 

    Have a look at what's going on, or search for something specific. We hope you'll join us. 
ICboard

An Input Method for Foreign Chinese Learners--ICboard

Recommended Posts

ICboard

Do you wish the pinyin keyboard could help you get the correct characters and type better?


ICboard may be the one you need —— an input method which is developed to assist foreign Chinese learners(especially for the beginners of native English speakers) to type Chinese better. 

 

Key features:

 

- Display of tone and common English translation

- Long press shows more (a mini dictionary with marked HSK vocabulary)

- Translation Input (No need to switch to translation apps to search unknown words when you are typing)

 

Click HERE to learn more      (Android only now)

 

We made many improvements according to people's suggestions on the first version 4 months ago. Now it changes a lot. You can download it at Google Play and take a look.

 

Look forward to hearing more feedback from you all!

 

 

Edited by ICboard

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Site Sponsors:
Pleco for iPhone / Android iPhone & Android Chinese dictionary: camera & hand- writing input, flashcards, audio.
Study Chinese in Kunming 1-1 classes, qualified teachers and unique teaching methods in the Spring City.
Learn Chinese Characters Learn 2289 Chinese Characters in 90 Days with a Unique Flash Card System.
Hacking Chinese Tips and strategies for how to learn Chinese more efficiently
Popup Chinese Translator Understand Chinese inside any Windows application, website or PDF.
Chinese Grammar Wiki All Chinese grammar, organised by level, all in one place.

roddy
40 minutes ago, ICboard said:

Check following URL for details:

Literally terrified the cats.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tomsima

Did I just cycle through a bunch of words and still have no idea what this keyboard actually is?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hofmann

They want you to download a beta. It's not on the Play Store because they aren't that serious.

 

BTW, @ICboard, almost nobody is going to do that. Talk to marketing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ICboard

How get ICboard works?

 

01 Installation and Use

1. Start ICboard.
2. In language & input panel, enable ICboard.
3. In change keyboard panel, choose ICboard.
4. In setting, click the check box for “long press shows more”.
5. Choose OK for “Open pop-up window”.
6. Choose Display for “Display pop-up window”.

 

02 New Pinyin Code

The new Pinyin code adds the first two letters of the English word to the original Pinyin.
For example, the new Pinyin code for 你 (pronounced “ni”, meaning “you”) is “niyo”.
Every Chinese word has its new Pinyin code, which helps you improve input accuracy.

 

03 Long press shows more

Long press each word on the list you can get more information about its pinyin, tones and translations.

Learn more Chinese words by typing with ICboard anytime, anywhere and you will expand your Chinese vocabulary.

 

04 Translate

Press the translation button and type English then it directly outputs Chinese. For example: good morning=早上好.

No need to switch to translation software in your typing. Sending Chinese messages is so easy!

 

05 Gesture

Create your own gesture and name it in Chinese. Then you can easily send a Chinese message by “drawing” .

 

If you have any questions please contact Wendy (email: [email protected]).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
roddy
1 hour ago, ICboard said:

For example, the new Pinyin code for (pronounced ni, meaning you) is niyo.

 

Of all the “improvements” to pinyin I’ve seen suggested, this is... I don’t even know. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
roddy

And stop pasting your marketing texts. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ICboard

@roddy Thank you for the question and information.

 

Sure, I'll stop post Ads-like information again. I just post those text to explain to @Tomsimawhat ICboard is.

 

Actually, ICboard is a keyboard specifically made to help the Chinese learner whose mother language is English. The key innovation of ICboard is the new Pinyin code of a Chinese character  ,which consists of its original Pinyin and the first two letters of its English word.

 

With ICboard, you can learn and type Chinese faster and better without any heave study burden.

 

For those very beginner, we provided interactive e-lessons to help them to learn and input common Chinese characters with ICboard.

 

Btw, you can download ICboard from Google Play and other Android store now.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
roddy

I think this is a mistake. Any modern IME will have given them the correct character nine times out of ten, if not at the top of the list then very near it. At that point typing the first two letters of the English is intrusive and superfluous. It'd also require a memorisation effort, which is not something Chinese learners want more of. What are the first two letters of the English for 表? Me for meter? Wa for watch? Su for surface?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ICboard

@roddy Very good question, which is the key point of our new Pinyin code. We've considered this question very seriously.

The problem of original Pinyin code is there are multiple Chinese characters having the same Pinyin code. For example, when you type Pinyin “biao” in any Chinese IME, there are a candidate Chinese character list looks like “表 标 彪 镖 。。。”. You can not identify which character is exactly the one you want to type unless you already know the Character 表. For the Chinese learner,  especially beginner, it's very hard to identify the right character. Very few people can recognize a lot of Chinese characters even he/she can read them.

This a fundumental weak point of Pinyin code system, which can not easily solved by IMEs, even the best one, Sougou Pinyin.

As for the first two letter of English word for 表, we choose SU for surface in ICboard. We've look through more than 5000 common Chinese characters and words and chosen their best-fit English words. In our team, there are two language experts, whose tasks is to decide which one is best English word.  

In the new Pinyin code, there is only a unique code for each Chinese character.

Actually, we've considered more advanced problems, such as polyphonic and polysemous charactor.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ICboard

@roddy The user does not need to remember the new Pinyin code.  What he/she need to do is just guess, or identify the right character for the candidate list with the help of the new pinyin code. If he/she can not make sure whether his/her choice is correct or not, he/she can long-press on the new pinyin code and the whole English word with its tone will appear for the final choice. We also design a sliding effect of multiple long-press for saving the time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Beelzebro

Are there any screenshots we can view? I'm not interested in downloading it because my character knowledge is already good enough that it won't be useful for me, but I'm curious to see how the app looks and works.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ICboard

@Beelzebro

Thank you for the attention. I've uploaded a bunch of sceenshots of its main functions.  

Actually, we also have lots of short videos. Pls feel free to contact me for more information.

Chinese-basic.jpg

long-press.jpg

spread.jpg

Chinese-word.jpg

Eng2Chn.jpg

Eng-basic.jpg

gusture recognization.jpg

voice-input.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tomsima

Are you telling us your language experts decided that we should type in biaobi to produce 婊 because the best translation they could agree on is bitch? But also that there are three biaobi options? Why would I bother to memorise three badly set words (points for anyone who can tell me what the bi of 彪 is…big'n'brave?)

 

If you want feedback, just stick to your translation keyboard, the idea of memorising thouasands of set single word equivalent English translations is just so ridiculous.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
大块头
4 hours ago, Tomsima said:

the idea of memorising thouasands of set single word equivalent English translations is just so ridiculous

 

11 hours ago, roddy said:

I think this is a mistake. Any modern IME will have given them the correct character nine times out of ten, if not at the top of the list then very near it. At that point typing the first two letters of the English is intrusive and superfluous. It'd also require a memorisation effort, which is not something Chinese learners want more of. What are the first two letters of the English for 表? Me for meter? Wa for watch? Su for surface?

 

I agree with Tomsima and Roddy. A Chinese word can have several possible English translations, and each English translation can have several synonyms. Including the first couple letters of an arbitrary English translation is not helpful at all.

 

Showing a popup with the CC-CEDICT definition when you held down one of the Chinese word suggestions might be useful for Chinese learners. Showing a popup with whatever your language "experts" has decided is the "best" English translation is not as useful.

 

That all being said, I wouldn't trust a third-party keyboard from an unknown publisher to not log all my keystrokes. Not a security risk I'm willing to take.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ICboard

@Tomsima @大块头 Thank you for your great advice and suggestions. Maybe my posts mislead you. I think there're some misunderstandings about the new Pinyin.

1. Actually, user does not need memorise the new Pinyin code, in order to use ICboard to input Chinese character. When a user type, he/she can only type the classic Pinyin code, where th new Pinyin code is just used to help he/she to guess which candidate is the right one. In the case of a user know the new Pinyin code of a Chinese character, he/she can type the whole new Pinyin code to reduce the size of candidate list to a small number (almost one.).

2. You're advanced Chinese learner. But for beginers, memorising thousands of Chinese characters is really a big burden, which prevent them from making progress in their Chinese learning, which is the problem ICboard aims to solve.

3.Could you please tell me how you input Chinese characters on your phone?  If you want to type a character you only know its Pinyin without the ability to identify accurately the character?How can you make sure exactely which Chinese character is you want to type?

4.As for the security problem,  we consider it seriously. (1) We passed the check of Google Play store. (2). User can switch to offline mode when uses ICboard, which stop the communication of the App with the server. (3) We're looking for some official orginizations for the securtiy certificaiton of ICboard.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
艾墨本

@ICboard what is your evidence that this new method is an improvement over previous methods? 

 

Everything youre describing sounds like an added burden not a reduction. 

 

Youre defense of “but you’re an advanced learner” overlooks that fact that to get to advanced you have to pass through all of the lower levels. It also overlooks that these are all people who spend gross amount of time helping beginners get to advanced. It also overlooks you’re not just talking to people who study how to speak Chinese but also linguistics, translation, and teaching pedagogy.

 

id like to hear more about the evidence on which this typing method is based beyond just there is a problem, here is a solution. 

 

Why does this solution not just add more memorization burden?

Why is this better than typing two character words to get to the character you want?

is the current pinyin system a problem? According to who? I haven’t met any students (including the beginners that I teach) that find the current pinyin system troubling.

 

  • Like 3
  • Good question! 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ninchanese

@ICboard  You're coming up with something interesting here but this statement is lame: Do you find it easy to learn pinyin and spoken Chinese but difficult to move on learning characters?


I'm not sure you are asking the right question, would it not be better to ask simply: How can we do a better IME for Chinese learners? So, then, mixing up Pinyin and English does not look like a great approach to this problem. It really looks like you are adding confusion like everyone said before. 

 

The only thing that looks interesting (for me and that I could recommend) is the point 3: long press to get information. If done right, that could add value to the typical IME. Point 4 is also something that could be convenient.

 

Any chance to see a desktop version? :)

 

I'm looking forward to see how this IME will develop in the future since you are in alpha, there is always room for pivoting, right? :)

My 2 cents ;)

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wendy_Ting

@艾墨本

Hi!  I think when the speakers of other languages first started learning the characters, something like 你 and 我 was obvious. But the difference between something like 饿 、鹅 and 俄 etc was not immediately obvious, all of them are e in pinyin. 

 

This new version helps because it reduces brain load. You see pinyin with the “auxiliary code”, take a guess, and you then have the proper character in front of you. If you need to make sure, long press to double check. The pop-up window shows up after you long press and display the tone of the word and other meanings. To some degree, I don't think typing two characters better. Actually you do not need type the "code" on purpose. It reduces time and complexity. You could take a try if possible then you may find it does have some positive points.

 

The "code" is to give people some hints,早mo(rning);皂so(ap);噪no(isy)…… assist them to narrow the range from the list which shows many different characters with same pronunciation,and lock the target. It does not increase brain load, but removes it, by using the same information you find through the world of Chinese learning to find the character you want.

 

There is nothing wrong with pinyin as is. That being said pinyin and memorization of characters work best with the method that almost every child in china is taught. They learn the pinyin through writing, speaking, signing, games etc.They learn characters the same way. Starting at an early age they are exposed to characters, and are taught the stroke order, then how to write with a brush, pen, or pencil. As a whole this system is excellent, and it works for the billion plus Chinese people on the planet. 

That being said, a foreign Chinese student may not benefit from the entire system. In fact he or she only got taught pinyin through a book and a teacher speaking it to them, which is not as good a method. The “auxiliary code” is not a new innovation of the pinyin code for Chinese people and people fluent in Chinese, but a new innovation in learning technology for English speakers.

 

That's my 2 cents.

  • Like 1
  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
hbuchtel

I think this could be useful. Even now I will occasionally need to switch out of the message app, identify the correct character in Pleco, then go back to the message app to finish my text. 

 

This is is easy now because the modern phones are so fast, but I remember on the early iPhones this was a real pain. 

 

I’m interested to hear how well it works. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and select your username and password later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Click here to reply. Select text to quote.

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...