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<sx zx cx> are in my humble opinion some of the ugliest possible
orthographic choices. Anything short of tone letters is prettier than
those.<v> for /ɥ/ is much less of an issue than the Cx series. On the other
hand your rationale there is sound, but i'd use <sj zj cj> instead, unless
there is some form of ambiguity there i haven't seen.

2017-09-17 20:53 GMT-03:00 Mike S. <[log in to unmask]>:

> On Sun, Sep 17, 2017 at 10:40 AM, Victor Chan <[log in to unmask]>
> wrote:
>
> > I had now studied the phonology of Standard Mandarin and pinyin. I had
> > read some past threads from 2000. Anyway, I consider <x, j, q> to be an
> > allophone of the three series. Regardless of its allophone status, <x, j,
> > q> should be indicated with the same symbols as one of three phoneme
> series
> > to reserve independent letters for tones.
> >
>
> Yes, it seems wasteful to use those three letters up like that.  And I
> really never cared for the Pinyin use of <q> or <x>, though that's just a
> personal opinion.
>
> Just for fun, my "reform" quickly:
>
> - <m n p t k b d g c z s f h r l w ch zh sh> stay the same.
>
> - <x> indicates palatalized pronunciation, just as <h> indicates
> retroflex.  So Pinyin <x, j, q> become <sx, zx, cx> if showing the palatal
> pronunciation explicitly is desired.  This letter can be ignored when using
> the system for entering hanzi on computers.  You can write <s, z, c> or <h,
> g, k> to indicate archaic pronunciations, in rare cases where the old
> distinctions are retained, in Chinese opera or wherever.  You can also
> write <hx, gx, kx> if you really wanted to, to indicate a historically
> velar pronunciation that's been palatalized, though I am not sure this
> would be needed.
>
> - <ŋ> becomes the standard way to write the coda <ng>.  I believe Pinyin
> already allows this but it seems little used, at least in the Western text
> I've see.
>
> - <q> is reserved as a substitute for <ŋ>, due to its similar shape, where
> <
> ŋ> causes a problem for printing.  Getting rid of <ng> takes a load off the
> eyes.
>
> - <j> is redeployed to replace most of uses of Pinyin <y>; in other words
> <j> is the "pseudo-initial" semivowel form of <i>.  So Pinyin <yi> becomes
> <ji>.
>
> - <y> is now the rounded high front vowel, replacing <ü> (which is written
> <u> after palatals, but now we can be consistent).  Thus the tone diacritic
> never has to be stacked on top of the umlaut.
>
> - <y̆>, i.e. y with breve, is the semivowel counterpart of <y>, replacing
> <yu->, if needed or desired.  I don't think it's needed though; you could
> just as well write <jy> or <wy> for <yu> i.e. /y/, without a (true) initial
> consonant.  But y-breve is there if necessary, or if consistency is
> desired.
>
> - <v> is reserved as a substitute for <y̆>.  But, again, this is probably
> not needed.  And that's good, because using <v> for anything other than /v/
> and similar sounds is ugly.
>
> What I like most about my system is the parallelism between <sh, zh, ch>
> and <sx, zx, cx>; more generally, all the affricates and sibilants start
> with one of <s, z, c>.  I am sure I am not the first person to have this
> idea, of course.
>
>
>
> >
> > I now have another idea to represent the <x, j, q>: use <h, g, k> in
> place
> > of <x, j, q> instead of <ir> for the syllabic consonant. <v> could then
> be
> > used to represent [y]. On further modification to prevent ambiguity in
> > syllable boundary, <q> could be used to represent phonemically null
> > initial. I propose <q> because it is close representation to a glottal
> > stop. The phonemically null onset in Mandarin can be pronunced with
> > multiple consonants but it is represented by the glottal stop in
> Cantonese
> > and Shanghainese. By marking the syllable boundary in this way, /i, y, u/
> > could be represented solely by their IPA counterpart and <v, w> could be
> > used to represent tones instead. This would reserve <v, w, j, x> to mark
> > tones.
> >
>
>
> Purely out of curiosity, what is your rationale for wanting to use letters
> to mark tones?  In the age of Unicode and computer-aided printing, I
> believe diacritics have come to cause relative few problems, and they're
> the conventional means for marking things like tones in the Latin-alphabet
> tradition.  Unlike tone-letters, diacritics wouldn't cause naive Westerners
> to insert spurious segments into Chinese words, which are already hard
> enough for them to get right.
>
> -Mike
> --
> co ma'a mke
>
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>