the Desk of
La Jolla, California
Nov 9, 2004
SignWriting is the written form for hundreds of signed languages.
There is a different Sign Language in every country.
Some countries have more than one official Sign Language.
And SignWriting can write them all.
SignBank is a multilingual SignWriting
database specially designed to work in FileMaker
Pro. It includes ten relational
databases. Each database is programmed by Todd
Duell, in a sophisticated and innovative fashion.
SignBank provides Sign Language users with an archive
of illustrations, sign language video-clips and animation.
Most importantly, it provides a way to find words by
looking up signs, using SignWriting symbols, in the
order of the Sign-Symbol-Sequence (SSS).
SSS is to signed languages, what alphabetical
order is to spoken languages. English words are
looked up by alphabetical order. Signs are looked up
For those who use Sign Language on a daily basis, whether
they be deaf or hearing, SignBank offers the world of
written Sign Language literature at their fingertips.
In the past, Sign Languages were criticized by hearing
societies, for not having a written literature. No longer
can anyone say that Sign Languages are not written languages,
because we have SignBank dictionaries and literature
to prove it! And we can print it out at a moment's notice,
in multiple sizes and formats!
has brought written Sign Language into the Information
2004, there has been an explosion of new
software development in SignWriting. Programmers
around the world have become inspired to develop new
ways to use SignWriting in computers. And SignBank is
one of the pioneering programs that has been the catalyst
for other software development.
Without SymbolBank, which is one of the ten relational
databases in SignBank, programmers would not be able
to search and find the symbols they need for their software
development. SymbolBank 2004 provides the complete symbol
archive for the International
Movement Writing Alphabet (the IMWA).
programmer Todd Duell, of Formulations
Pro, worked with me for several years, slowly taking
my design requests and implementing them into FileMaker.
Our first release was called SignBank
2002. Todd was amazing! For example, at the time
we started the development we were told that we could
not "lookup by a graphic". Even though this
is technically true, Todd found an ingenious way around
that limitation. Because of FileMaker's user-friendly
graphical interface, and Todd's willingness to experiment
with new ways to program FileMaker, Deaf children can
now lookup by SignWriting symbols, even though they
are graphics symbols...It makes learning visual and
fun for Deaf children, plus it is an aid in learning
to read and write spoken languages...
this web page
from a PDF document ...