User talk:A-cai/2008

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Happy Western New Year! When you have a moment, could you please add Mandarin and Min-nan translations to the entry for hinder? Do watch out for edit conflicts, though, since I'm asking several folks for help with this. --EncycloPetey 19:58, 1 January 2008 (UTC)

The only one I didn't add is for "comparative form of hind." I have never seen hinder used in this way, so I wouldn't know how to translate it. -- A-cai 23:18, 1 January 2008 (UTC)

PMT Group Membership Suggestion[edit]

Thanks for your suggestion of the name of Chloejr for PMT Group Membership. We would contact him.

Project Multilingual Translations is actually a big dream seen by some of us. As we get contributors from various languages, that language would become more and more reachable to all communities. What we need is just serious, consistent contributors for each language.

By the way, can I request you that could you yourself find some time regularly to contribute in your own language? Do consider and respond on my talk page or on PMT Discussions page.

Shreehari 08:55, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

Ketchup copyvio[edit]

I noticed that you added the etymology for ketchup in this diff. It is pretty similar to what is on the Online Etmyology Dictionary here. Since this is not free use, I removed the last sentence. I'm not sure if I should do anything else, just letting you know. Nadando 05:48, 15 March 2008 (UTC)

Chinese pronunciation[edit]

Hello. I've noticed that you are interested in pronunciation for Chinese entries. Actually my bot adds pronunciation to both pinyin and Mandarin simplified entries. I've just stopped it because I was not sure if the pronunciation should be put in both places. If you have a bit time to look at the latest bot contributions (newest two pages show Mandarin), and tell me if everything follows rules, I can continue with my bot. Unfortunately, I won't add audio to the Mandarin entries written in simplified script. It would require modifying the bot. Perhaps I could fix it later, but currently I just don't have time. --Derbeth talk 13:52, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

Yes, I noticed that your bot had added audio files to a number of entries. My ultimate goal would be to add the audio link to all relevant entries. In the case of Mandarin, that would include simplified, traditional, and pinyin (with and without tones). I'm no longer convinced that it is necessary to create separate entries for pinyin in each instance. However, I had created quite a few in the past (particularly for beginning Mandarin words). So for example, your bot added audio to 鸡蛋. I then copied the audio to 雞蛋, jīdàn and jidan. It provided me a convenient excuse to take another look at these entries, updating the formatting, adding references etc. Of course, I also listen to the audio to make sure that it accurately represents the sound of the word in question. -- A-cai 22:51, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

You know, the list of entries in Mandarin my bot is going to modify equals about 1500, so you won't be able to check everything :) I'm going to run the bot tomorrow or some time later this week. --Derbeth talk 23:19, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

Would you mind creating a category for me (ex. Category:Mandarin entries with audio links). Then, just have your bot place the entry into that category. This would allow me to check through a few of them every once in a while. After a few years, I may be able to get to quite a few of them. -- A-cai 23:30, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

Wikisource congratulations[edit]

Can I just say that your contribution to Wikisource's Romance of the Three Kingdoms is one of most amazing and dedicated things I have seen on any WMF project (or anywhere else for that matter). Congratulations for what you have done so far, it is a very readable translation and the footnotes are amazingly useful. Good luck for the next 20 years! (Your reputation is spreading ;) Conrad.Irwin 23:48, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

Thanks! I hope to finish chapter five within the next week or so. My goal is to create the kind of translation/study aid that I would have wanted when I first began to try to read such works. I want to blow the academics out of their chairs so that they wake up to the potential of the wikimedia projects. In my opinion, it's not about Wiktionary, Wikipedia, Wikicommons or Wikisource individually. It's the combination that really makes it powerful. -- A-cai 11:40, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Display of Chinese characters[edit]

Thanks a lot for your work. I am not aware of any Wiktionary and Wikisource policy about this, but is there a reason for not specifying language and script for Chinese characters wherever they appear – including a word's synonym section, Chinese titles of sources such as 國語辭典 and HSK汉语水平考试词典, or in components that form a word (in its etymology section) such as 四 + 海 and 太 + 平? In case you are not sure what I am talking about, have a look at

This would help to avoid ugly font mixes within articles or even words. Dustsucker 09:28, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

(Hi Dustsucker!) We have ISO 15924 script templates {{Hant}} and {{Hans}} ({{Hani}}, {{Jpan}}, etc). Please don't use {{lang}}. The script templates invoke the html/xml and fonts and classes as needed (for example, Cyrl still uses specific fonts by default, etc). Some scripts have templates specific to language {{fa-Arab}}, we could define {zh-Hant} but we haven't seen a need. (Might want {ko-Hant} at some point.) Robert Ullmann 12:51, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
Dustsucker, I'm not sure if there is any specific reason for or against. Wiktionary is an evolving project. A lot of times, I won't realize that something is necessary (or not necessary) until having added hundreds of words (or unless someone like you offers feedback, which is not as often as I'd like). This is mostly because I've been the only fluent Chinese speaker who has regularly contributed to Wiktionary over the last two years. Hopefully, that will change someday. In the absence of a group of Chinese language experts, I would say the best approach for these kinds of proposals would be to first post a note at Wiktionary:Beer parlour (WT:BP). WT:BP is where you can post general comments or questions to the Wiktionary community. It can be a rather raucous (and humorous) place at times, but it also gives you an opportunity to express your opinions or canvass the opinions of others. However, generally speaking, your logic does seem sound. -- A-cai 12:55, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
A-cai, do note this is a solved problem, as I pointed out; it has been all hashed in the WT:GP and implemented. SOme of the templates might use a bit of refinement. (Hant still uses lang:zh-tw, but that does work with all browsers.) Robert Ullmann 13:02, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
Robert, I'll defer to you on this one. However, to his point about using such templates in every place that Chinese characters appear (such as the translations section of English entries, synonyms and related terms within Chinese entries etc), do you have a sense that we should be doing this, or do you think it is overkill? -- A-cai 13:13, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
To put in my 2 cents (on an admittedly old discussion) – I use different font sets for Japanese and Chinese (partly due to different coverage, partly to distinguish them when possible), which are visually different (Gothic for Japanese, rather calligraphic for Chinese) so if these tags are not set, it’s very visible and jarring.
Perhaps there’s a way to simplify this, so that rather than setting a script template for each character or compound, one can say “in this section, all Chinese characters are Japanese” or such, but that would seem to require having something like “lang=English+Japanese”.
Perhaps this has been solved, but for now it seems one either omits the templates and gets ugliness for some, or tediously adds templates for all the characters (I believe this latter is what Japanese Wiktionary does).
Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 23:47, 23 September 2008 (UTC)

Categorizing cleanup[edit]

Mutante is spearheading an effort to ensure all entries have the appropriate grammar categories. There are 14 Chinese words that lack categories, and some of these need to have the language headers corrected as well. Would you mind attending to these 14 entries? They are listed at Wiktionary:Categorizing#Chinese. --EncycloPetey 02:22, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

done. -- A-cai 13:14, 16 May 2008 (UTC)


Make sure you note this :-) Robert Ullmann 12:24, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for pointing that out to me. -- A-cai 12:46, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

New number template[edit]

Please have a look at {{cardinalbox}} and let me know what you think. I've devoted more than 9 hours to it today, in addition to planning the basic design well ahead of time. Of course, it shouldn't be used yet, except for testing, because it may continue to change with additional suggestions, but I'd still like to have some feedback. You can see the template in action on the page for novem, in addition to the examples on the template talk page. --EncycloPetey 05:55, 29 June 2008 (UTC)


Hey A-cai, could you add some content to this word? An anon added it and I didn't want to delete it without knowing Mandarin. Thanks. Nadando 06:07, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

电棒 Also this. Nadando 03:20, 13 July 2008 (UTC)


Thanks for the helpful tips. --♠TBC♠ 07:04, 13 July 2008 (UTC)


Would you please provide some input on this topic? Thanks in advance.--♠TBC♠ 11:27, 13 July 2008 (UTC)

Simplified characters that already existed as traditional characters[edit]

Hi, I've asked a lot of questions about simplified Chinese characters that already existed as traditional characters, but which aren't noted as such in their entries. I just discovered Category:CJKV simplified characters which already existed as traditional characters and wonder if you knew about it, and whether it could be a good tool for clarifying this. 01:42, 8 August 2008 (UTC)

I think I might have run across that category at some time in the past. I have not used the category myself, but I don't see any harm in adding it to entries if you find it useful. Ultimately, you would want to add an inflection template in the entry itself. For example, take a look at 面#Mandarin. Hope this helps. -- A-cai 11:03, 8 August 2008 (UTC)


hello A-cai, someone has asked whether 与 exists as a traditional character, I can see that from the Kang Xi cidian that it was a variant in the past but is it used now? I don't think so but I'm not sure. If you know please could you help? thanks. Pistachio 00:01, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for that. Pistachio 23:45, 25 August 2008 (UTC)


Hello A-cai ! I am very impressed by all your work here !

I am learning chinese and trying to add some stuff on the french wiktionary. However, as my chinese is not very good, I don't know what to do in some cases :

嗯 is listed in my two dictionaries as ng2, ng3, ng4. In one of them, it is also at n2, n3, n4. Using scim, I can input it by typing ng (alongside with two others I can't see : and ).

However, ng is not in the Category:Mandarin_pinyin_with_diacritics. Should it be added ? There is ng4 on the numbers version, but not the others, and no mention of them on the ng page. Koxinga 14:41, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

In order to answer your question, I need to introduce some background information about Chinese. Chinese encompasses a wide variety of related and often mutually unintelligible dialects. For more information on this subject, please read Varieties of Chinese. The standard dialect that is taught in most language programs is Standard Mandarin. The Standard Mandarin reading for is ēn (Pinyin romanization). By contrast, the Cantonese reading for is ng6 (jyutping romanization). The ng6 reading should be added to the page, but not under the Mandarin section (which is why you did not see it in Category:Mandarin_pinyin_with_diacritics). Rather, the ng6 reading should be placed in a separate Cantonese section. Hope this helps. -- A-cai 19:02, 28 September 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for your answer. I asked a chinese friend, her answer was the same as yours. However, the 新华字典 gives ng as the correct pinyin for 嗯. I really don't know what to think about it ... It seems a little far-fetched to have all these dictionaries just forgetting for one character whether it is Mandarin or Cantonese. On the other hand, ng does look strange. Koxinga 09:45, 1 October 2008 (UTC)

Mandarin translations[edit]

I am trying to add some templates for the chinese (well, mandarin) words in the french wiktionary and I learn a lot fom what you have done here. I just wanted to know why you didn't use the {{t}} template, or create a {{zh-t}} template, like the {{he-translation}} one. Is there a specific reason ? You use zh-ts, but why not include the pinyin in the template, instead of just adding it after ?

Koxinga 21:00, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

No specific reason. I created the {{zh-ts}} template a long time ago, and have been using it ever since. I am not as familiar with the other templates, since I did not create them. With respect to why I didn't add pinyin to the {{zh-ts}} template, I simply didn't think of it at the time. However, I don't necessarily think that it is a bad idea. Hope this helps. -- A-cai 22:10, 4 October 2008 (UTC)


Hi A-cai,

I modified {{categoryTOC-hiragana}} (which you created) so that the kana are displayed in a rectangular table. This makes navigating the list rather easier, though it takes up more space at the top of categories.

Firstly, does the change seem ok? Good?

Perhaps we should have this TOC float at the right side of categories, so that it doesn’t take up as much space?

Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 01:23, 12 November 2008 (UTC)

Looks fine to me. I forgot that I even created that template :) -- A-cai 12:28, 12 November 2008 (UTC)
Glad you like it – thanks!
Nils von Barth (nbarth) (talk) 17:08, 12 November 2008 (UTC)

nǐhǎo or nǐ hǎo?[edit]

Hi A-cai In the article about 你好 it say that it is nǐhǎo in pinyin but if you google on nǐhǎo and "nǐ hǎo" you will get most hits with "nǐ hǎo". The same is try about "nǐmen hǎo" and "Nín hǎo" on google. The article on wikipedia about pinyin orthography seems to support to write it as one word but the wikipedia article dont have any sources so I can not verify the information or find more details about it. What in your opion is right: nǐhǎo or nǐ hǎo? and do you have source to support your opion? Kinamand 15:40, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

According to the following reference:
  • 1985, Jingrong (ed.) Wu, The Pinyin CHINESE-ENGLISH DICTIONARY (in Mandarin/English), Beijing, Hong Kong: The Commercial Press, ISBN 0471867969:
it should be nǐhǎo. In my opinion, this is correct. The phrase nǐhǎo can be considered a to be a single word (an interjection), even though it is technically comprised of two words. Hope this helps. -- A-cai 15:45, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for your very fast answer :-) Kinamand 15:49, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
What about nǐmen hǎo or nǐmenhǎo? Kinamand 15:51, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
I would tend toward nǐmen hǎo, since it has more a two-word feel. But that's just my opinion. I don't think many dictionaries list nǐmen hǎo as a separate entry. -- A-cai 16:00, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

work in progress[edit]



延祐 (1320)



Some sentences in the above appear to be in the incorrect order. I believe this blogger has the correct sequence. Thus:



延祐 (1320)



In case anyone is wondering what this post is about, see History of Guan Yin Hall. -- A-cai 22:08, 29 November 2008 (UTC)


Hi, it seems that, in addition to referring to the ritual object, the phrase "如意" very often appears on Chinese carvings, monuments, scrolls, etc. Should we add another definition: "Phrase: according to one's wishes"? 19:53, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

Traditional characters with two simplifications[edit]

Hi A-cai !

Some Han characters, e.g. , have two simplified forms (, ). Is it something real or just an error of Unihan database ? My 新华字典 just gives me :"沈 (瀋)", I can't find in it. Is it a very rare old variant ? Is it related to w:Second-round_simplified_Chinese_character ? I understand how several traditional characters can have the same simplified equivalent, but the opposite seeems weird to me.

thanks, and merry Christmas ;o) 谢谢,祝你圣诞节快乐!(should I say "圣诞节" or just "圣诞" ?) Koxinga 12:13, 26 December 2008 (UTC)

I'm not sure of the chronology of the characters. However, 沈 seems to be the more common variant by far. Here is a comparison of the google hits for Shenyang:
Hope this helps. -- A-cai 14:04, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
The simplification has been decided by the government of PRC, so there is an official list, no ? I don't think they made two different simplifications of the same character, it doesn't make sense.
I made a list of the seven I found , in case there is one you are more familiar with. I add what I found in the 新华字典 :
Koxinga 15:07, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
I understand your question. My guess would be that 渖 was a semi-successful attempt to simplify 瀋. The 沈 is not a simplified character per se. It has been in existance for quite some time. However, the PRC may have encouraged its use over 瀋, because it has fewer strokes. As such, it might be thought of as a variant that was later standardized by the PRC as the official "spelling." Another example of this would be 甚 and 什. The two characters are interchangable in traditional writing, but 什 was standardized as the official character in the PRC. Still another example would be 臺 and 台. Does that make sense? -- A-cai 15:20, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
I did some researchs and I found 渖 here : ("【字海】 渖 : 瀋的异体字") and here. Do you agree it should not be considered a simplified equivalent of  ? (if you don't care, you can also tell me and I will stop bothering you ;o) ) I do not know why the Unicode consortium chose to include this one as a simplified version and not a variant ... (do you know where to ask this kind of question ?) Koxinga 16:37, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
Your first site describes 渖 as a variant of 瀋. The second site describes 沈 as having been included in the first list of simplified characters for 瀋. Sounds plausible to me. -- A-cai 19:13, 26 December 2008 (UTC)

chamber pot[edit]

Hi, can you check translations at chamber_pot#Translations? I think the first word used to mean chamber pot but now means toilet. 00:16, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

The first word is too generic to be useful as a translation in this case. I have modified the entry according to the explanation given in the Chinese wikipedia article for chamber pot. -- A-cai 23:52, 29 December 2008 (UTC)