A handwriting system that used the simplest possible strokes for letters would, of course, be faster to write with than longhand, which uses several, sometimes as many as four, strokes for each letter. And if the system were phonetic, words couldn't be misspelled! The word "ought," for example, uses five letters to write only two sounds. So a really slick form of handwriting would use one stroke for one sound.
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A handwriting system that used the simplest possible strokes for letters would, of course, be faster to write with than longhand, which uses several, sometimes as many as four, strokes for each letter. And if the system were phonetic, words couldn't be misspelled! The word "ought," for example, uses five letters to write only two sounds.
So a really slick form of handwriting would use one stroke for one sound. Simple, but too difficult? Not necessarily. You just need to learn to hear the sounds that you use when speaking English so you can write them, and then learn some simple symbols to represent those sounds. Since you have been taught to pay attention to 26 letters and not the actual sounds of English, tuning in to speech sounds may take some time, but can also be quite interesting and fun. In the box below is a summary of everything you need to learn to start writing faster.
As a bonus, hardly anyone probably no one you know will be able to read your writing. To better understand the above, study the following. Notice how, in the examples, each sound is often spelled several different ways. Th th th in— th en same vowel , th igh—brea the. By the way, the "th" in "then" or "the" occurs about ten times more often in writing than "Th" in "thin" or "think". These sounds are from foreign words such as "llama" when pronounced like "y" instead of "l.
This is a minor vowel very close to the "short o" in Don. So "all" or "awl" could be written or and so forth, but if you need to distinguish between "dawn" and "Don" or "la" and "law," "tock" and "talk," then you can—these being the among the few examples I have encountered that differ solely on the basis of these vowel sounds. Some words, like "bought" bawt and "bot" baht may be pronounced the same by some people, and so may be written the same. Note that when writing this symbol there is always at least one sharp angle between it and a consonant to distinguish it from the vowels and which may also be tear shaped when they sometimes blend in with two consonants— in which case there is no angle.
A little known or acknowledged fact: "r" is a vowel, not a consonant. Generations of English teachers have mislead you. While I did list "r" with the consonants, I'm now giving you the straight dope. A vowel sound is one you can make in a continuous manner using your vocal cords with mouth open until you run out of breath. Try it. Consonants are the various ways vowels can be modified at the beginning or end of them. Say "ahahahahahahahah," now say "rrrrrrrrrrrrr.
Some admit only that it's a semivowel, but I prefer to say the emperor has no clothes and claim it's a vowel. Next time you're around an English teacher or other language expert, argue this point ad nausium until they concede. Some consonant sounds often blend with others. For example "bl" or "fr. Here are some examples.
Note that most words starting with "wh" are actually pronounced "hw" with a few exceptions like "who" which is just "h" plus "oo" without a "w" sound. Also, "nt" can be written or blended into. Another handy blend is to use for "d" or "ed" at the end of a word by making the hook with a counter-clockwise motion as in "and" or "bird". This differs from the vowel usage of this symbol which is always written clockwise as in "know". If you find that distinguishing between clockwise and counter clockwise circles is too confusing, you could eliminate the distinction at the cost of using two-stroke symbols to stand for single sounds.
A large circle in any direction would be "uh" in "but," and a small circle in any direction would be used for the "ih" in "bit. It is useful to assign the sounds in the Handywrite phonetic alphabet to keyboard characters that are quick to type. Since you already know most of the characters, learning a few more will allow you to type words phonetically.
Since the IPA is the only really good pronunciation guide, I would suggest studying it, and using the above simplified typeable version to break down words into basic speech sounds. Because our interest is to write using only the minimum number of distinctive vowel and consonant sounds needed to tell one word from another, it would be correct to say that Handywrite uses a phonemic rather than phonetic alphabet.
One symbol may stand for two speech sounds provided they differ only slightly as allophones and are not used to differenctiate between words. True homophones, of course, cannot be written differently using a phonemic or phonetic alphabet, so "their" and "there" are written the same. Since "c" is not used for a consonant sound, it is used to represent the vowel in "bull" or "book.
The word "nation" could be pronounced "neyshuhn," "neyshihn," "neyshehn," or with no vowel in "neyshn. Phonetics is phun. As infants we have the ability to hear all possible speech sounds used in any language.
With maturity most of us lose the ability to hear speech sounds not in our native language. In some languages, for example, there is no distinction made between "p" and "b" so if you say "pet" then "bet" native speakers will hear both as the same word.
With other sounds, English speakers have the same impairment. The vowel "e," as in Spanish "el bebe," is not normally found in English other than in the diphthong "ey" as in "bait" or Spanish "ley," which is the "e" sound with the slight addition of the "i" in "beet.
So English speakers tend to hear "el" to rhyme with "bell behl " and "bebe" to rhyme with the first vowel in "baby beybi , while Spanish speakers hear "ey," they tend not to hear any difference between "eh" and "e.
For practical purposes, "eh" or "e" is also the first vowel in "hair," "care," or "air" when followed by "r. Here's an example from Spanish: El mes de julio es un mes de fiestas por todo el mundo hispano. Not too many differences, since Spanish is quite phonetic to begin with.
An English speaker learning Spanish might phonetically write the above as:. Ah, so that's why I speak Spanish with such a thick accent! Using the international based characters with English would look like this:. The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dogs, and that made me laugh.
The above international typeable version should be used along with a dictionary that uses the IPA system to help you make sense of phonetics. While the IPA may seem confusing, the other pronunciation guides used by many dictionaries are confusing.
Images up to megapixels allow for fine printing at the largest sizes. Give a fine print as a gift that could hang on someone's wall for a hundred years. Overview A handwriting system that used the simplest possible strokes for letters would, of course, be faster to write with than longhand, which uses several, sometimes as many as four, strokes for each letter. Handywrite System Summary To better understand the above, study the following.
Consonants: as in Consonant Blends Some consonant sounds often blend with others. Alternative Vowel Symbols If you find that distinguishing between clockwise and counter clockwise circles is too confusing, you could eliminate the distinction at the cost of using two-stroke symbols to stand for single sounds.
Try out the alternatives and see what feels best for you. Typing the Handywrite Alphabet It is useful to assign the sounds in the Handywrite phonetic alphabet to keyboard characters that are quick to type.
Here are typeable characters for each sound based on international usage: The above usage will make sense if you are familiar with the International Phonetic Alphabet IPA.
An English speaker learning Spanish might phonetically write the above as: ehl meys dey hulio ehs un meys dey fiehstuhs por todo ehl mundo hispano.
Using the international based characters with English would look like this: The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dogs, and that made me laugh. Free Lessons: So much for the overview. Handywrite Story How Handywrite came to be. Handywrite Flashcards Study Handywrite flashcards. John Robert Gregg Find out more about the inventor of Gregg shorthand.
Teeline Shorthand Learn about this system of shorthand. Speedwriting Learn about this alphabetic shorthand. Easyscript Learn a bit about this commercialized shorthand. Keyscript Learn a bit about this relatively new alphabetic shorthand. Visible Speech Bell's Visible Speech. Blissymbolics And now for something really different. Shorthand Shorthand Shorthand Advice about learning any shorthand system. Unifon A one sound one letter alphabet. The Rainy Day by Henry W. First Fig by Edna St. Alone by Edgar Allan Poe I'm nobody!
Handywrite Lessons 1-7
Basically it's missing the "o" sound in UK English. This can be fixed by assigning a leftwards oval the reflection of that used for "aw" for the long a sound in father for those who say it like that and keeping the "o" symbol for "o". The missing consonant sounds in Standard Scottish English are covered by "Blends". There are many many missing vowel sounds from "Standard Scottish" whatever that is , but none that prevent unambiguous writing. Even Scottish Gaelic can be covered with the addition of a blend for "gh", a double "l" for the the palatal L, and ticks inside the two ovals to assign "ao" and that nasal sound at the end of "donn" or the middle of "toimhseachd".
Differences between Gregg and Handywrite?
Can anyone comment on the difference between Gregg Anniversary, say and Handywrite. What are the respective speed potentials? Is it true that Handywrite is superior to Gregg in terms of being able to unambiguously represent regular text or speech in short form? Don't have a clue what the speed potential of handywrite is, but my guess would be: not very fast. If you look at the handywrite site, as far as I've been able to find, the reason for the system is to get down all the sounds, and though the actual alphabet is faster to write than longhand, it's still much more stroke intensive than Gregg — even maybe S90 Gregg. If you're looking for speed, go with one of the proven court reporting versions.