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@Hippietrail (talkcontribs). I don't understand the request. The tone of the first character is preserved (yes, it's the 4th tone, see (dòu)), the tone of the second character is lost and has become neutral. This process is not referred to "tone sandhi", neutral tones may still affect preceding syllables, as in 哪里 (nǎli), pronounced as "náli" - the original tone of 里 affects the preceding syllable. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 04:32, 3 February 2014 (UTC)

Yes I'm just learning about unstressed syllables. It seems even native speakers confuse it with tone sandhi. But apart from that I've found two sources that list the dictionary tones for this word as 4 3 rather than the 4 0 that we have. Baidu dictionary and the Taiwanese book "Chinese for Everyday Scenarios". English Wiktionary and Google Translate both state 4 0. I'm not sure what Google Translate's policy is but our policy is to list dictionary tones so this entry seems wrong now that I hopefully understand it a bit better. — hippietrail (talk) 08:22, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
Also, the Zhuyin IMEs I've tried require you to use both tones for them to recognize that you're typing "tofu". They don't work if you leave out the tone of the second syllable or type tone 0/5. I must type "zj3" and not "zj" or "zj7" to get the second character. — hippietrail (talk) 09:17, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
I understand your question now. 4-3 is not incorrect, it's just the Taiwanese standard. I've added it now. In Taiwan there are some differences with tones, they have much less neutral tones and much less erhua. I'm not sure what your issue with Zhuyin is but remember that 1st tone has no tone marker and the neutral tone marker is ˙, which, quite confusing can stand in front and at the back of a syllable, e.g. "ㄕㄜˊ ˙ㄇㄜ" or "ㄕㄜˊ ㄇㄜ˙" (we use the latter here), which is "shénmo" - 甚麼, we only have "shénme" but "shénmo" is the Taiwanese standard. Our entries are more mainland-oriented, even if we have traditional characters, if a Taiwanese standard Pinyin is confirmed, it can be added as I just did - dòufu or dòufǔ (ㄉㄡˋ ㄈㄨ˙ or ㄉㄡˋ ㄈㄨˇ). --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 10:54, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
dou4 fu3 is not Taiwanese standard. [1] It is the pronunciation by a non-native Standard Chinese speaker, or by a dictionary which considers tonelessness as too Pekingese. Wyang (talk) 22:29, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
I beg to differ. Taiwanese Mandarin is known to have (possibly exponentially) less neutral tones than mainland Chinese. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 22:40, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
What can be more "Taiwanese standard" than the Guoyu Dictionary by the Ministry of Education of Taiwan? Wyang (talk) 22:44, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
If "dòufǔ" (ㄉㄡˋ ㄈㄨˇ) is unattested, I'm happy to remove it. I wonder what resource Hippietrail (talkcontribs) was using. Is it a published dictionary? This dictionary also has "ㄉㄡˋ ˙ㄈㄨ", i.e. "dòufu" in Pinyin. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 23:01, 3 February 2014 (UTC)
dòufǔ (4 3) is the only possibility listed by baidu, which should be very mainland oriented.
ㄉㄡˋ ㄈㄨˇ (4 3) is used in "Chinese for Everyday Scenarios" (Beginning Mandarin Chinese for Native English Speakers and Chinese Teachers) 978-986-6371-44-8
dòufǔ (4 3) is the only possibility listed be CEDICT, which should be bipartisan
dòufu (4 5) is the only transliteration given by Google Translate
dòufu (4 5) is the only possibility listed in "Oxford English-Chinese Chinese-English Minidictionary" 978-7-5600-4074-5
dòufu (4 5) is used in "Mandarin Chinese A Rough Guide Phrasebook" 1-85828-249-7
TL;DR - even less consensus or regional alignment than I expected! — hippietrail (talk) 04:25, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
1) Baidu is not a reliable source. 2) google:"Chinese+for+Everyday+Scenarios" is not a reliable source either. 3) CEDICT lists dòufu. Wyang (talk) 04:50, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
I agree. CEDICT: "豆腐 豆腐 dòu fu tofu, bean curd". Google Translate fails on simple Pinyin, one must be careful. Try translating "west" - 西. It doesn't show the correct tone mark. Textbooks, unfortunately have errors. Dictionaries are more reliable. I recommend Pleco for mobile devices and Wenlin for desktops (Windows, Mac). I think I have rushed adding "dòufǔ". Tools automatically generating Pinyin from Hanzi may produce "dòufǔ". --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 05:01, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
@Wyang (talkcontribs), your link to Baidu controversies looks like a good one pointing out problems with the service, but your link to "Chinese for Everyday Scenarios" is just a Google search and doesn't seem to have anything about problems with the book. How did you reach the conclusion that it's not reliable? — hippietrail (talk) 12:48, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
Also not addressed are the Microsoft Zhuyin (phonetic) IMEs. Perhaps they always require "full tone" even for unstressed syllables. I've found that for "的" and "(包)子" I must type the key for tone 5, but for "(甚)麼" I must type the key for tone 3. I suppose "的" and "子" might always be tone 5 whereas "麼" is usually tone 3 except in "甚麼". If so this could explain away this case too. — hippietrail (talk) 13:02, 4 February 2014 (UTC)
It is a textbook "written for foreigners who come to Taiwan for work or travel", which is not a reliable source. Chinese-Chinese dictionaries are the most reliable in this regard. Wyang (talk) 22:57, 4 February 2014 (UTC)

@Atitarev (talkcontribs): Interestingly, the Taiwanese dictionary you linked to at includes "豆腐" with "腐" listed as both "˙ㄈㄨ" and "ㄈㄨˇ". Are these all compounds? Here are the ones with tone 3 for "腐" where "腐" is the final syllable:

11 賣豆腐 ㄇㄞˋ ㄉㄡˋ ㄈㄨˇ
22 刀切豆腐 ㄉㄠ ㄑ|ㄝ ㄉㄡˋ ㄈㄨˇ
hippietrail (talk) 08:12, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
It's interesting that they used the 4th tone in two derived forms, when the base form and all other examples use neutral. It must be an error, don't you think? @Wyang (talkcontribs), @Jamesjiao (talkcontribs), @Tooironic (talkcontribs). We are having fun here, what do you think? Should we allow dòufǔ as an alternative pronunciation? --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 08:34, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
If anyone here is interested, I asked two questions touching this topic on the website
  1. Zhuyin IME and tone 0/5 syllables
  2. Is there a tone sandhi rule that “4 3” changes to “4 0”?
hippietrail (talk) 10:29, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
Yes, those two are errors. When a character has only one pronunciation, the dictionary probably assumes it has that pronunciation in all of its compounds. Deviations are manually corrected and those two for some reason failed to be recognised as exceptions.
Tonelessness-genesis has little relationship with the "tone sandhi" in your sense. It may occur in any tonal combination, and there are certain situations that tonelessness occurs more often, eg.:
  1. Particles. 了 的 地 得 啊 啦 個 嗎 吧
  2. Suffixes. 子 頭 巴 們 兒 什麼 結實
  3. Reduplications. 媽媽 爺爺 娃娃 蛐蛐 看看 星星 謝謝
  4. High frequency words, as a consequence of "minimum articulation effort". 太陽 頭髮 合同 打量
    1. Especially ones hard to pronounce tonally (eg. having the same tone on consecutive syllables, as an example of dissimilation). 明白 先生 漂亮
  5. Like suffixes, other "dummy syllables" or syllables not carrying as much meaning (as the previous one). i.e. First syllable is more synonymous with the compound than the second. 月亮 父親 女兒 耳朵 窗戶
  6. For disambiguation purposes. 東西 地道 報酬
  7. Others, for example loanwords or sound-related words. 蘿蔔 喇叭 囉嗦
Wyang (talk) 12:00, 5 February 2014 (UTC)
@Hippietrail (talkcontribs) I've read your posts on Chinese stackexchange. It seems Zhuyin IME works quite differently from Pinyin IME. It has advantages and disadvantages. If you're forced to enter the correct (original!) tone, then you get less candidates and it can be easier to find the right hanzi but you don't have to know/remember the tones with Pinyin IME. Having to enter the 3rd tone for 腐 (ㄈㄨˇ) in 豆腐 doesn't actually mean that it's pronounced so in every position but typing ㄈㄨˇ gives you less variants to look through. --Anatoli (обсудить/вклад) 12:07, 5 February 2014 (UTC)