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Chinese Character Breaker: Wang Yongmin and the Innovation of Wubi Font Input Method

author:Obedient who can't get married

As a treasure of Chinese culture, Chinese characters carry a profound historical heritage and wisdom crystallization with their unique pictographic, signifying, understanding, and morphophonic structures. However, in the early days of computer technology, Chinese characters became an insurmountable barrier on the road to digitization due to their complexity and large numbers. When the keyboard of the Western world taps out letter by letter, Chinese characters seem destined to be excluded from the emerging information age. However, a Chinese scientist named Wang Yongmin, with his remarkable wisdom and tenacious determination, succeeded in breaking this dilemma and created the Wubi font input method, which allowed Chinese characters to gallop at full speed in the computer world. This article will detail Wang Yongmin's research and development process, the innovative principles and far-reaching influence of the Wubi font input method, in order to pay tribute to this Chinese character breaker and his great contribution to the inheritance and development of Chinese civilization in the digital age.

Chinese Character Breaker: Wang Yongmin and the Innovation of Wubi Font Input Method

1. The dilemma of digitizing Chinese characters: historical background and challenges

**1. Uniqueness and Technical Problems of Chinese Characters**

With its unique way of construction and rich expressive power, Chinese characters constitute one of the oldest and still widely used writing systems in the world. However, these characteristics have become a huge challenge in the face of computer technology. First of all, Chinese characters come in a variety of forms, and the combination of strokes is ever-changing, and the number is huge (about 6,000 Chinese characters are commonly used in modern times), far exceeding simple character sets such as the Latin alphabet. Second, the encoding space of Chinese characters was huge, and the computer memory at that time was extremely limited, making it difficult to store and process such a large amount of information.

**2. Lack of international standards and culture anxiety**

In the 70s of the last century, with the rapid development of computer technology, there was no unified Chinese character coding standard in the world. As a result, the processing of Chinese characters in electronic devices has become a blank, making the Chinese language far behind the writing system using the Latin alphabet in terms of the speed and efficiency of information dissemination. This situation has aroused deep concern among the Chinese people, who fear that the spread of Chinese characters and Chinese culture will be seriously hindered in the information age.

Second, Wang Yongmin and the birth of the five-stroke font input method

**1. Wang Yongmin's Research Background and Determination**

Wang Yongmin, a top student at the University of Science and Technology of China, has a deep understanding of the problem of Chinese character input and a high sense of responsibility. Faced with the huge challenge of digitizing Chinese characters, he resolutely threw himself into this seemingly "impossible" task. Despite the difficult initial conditions and only 3,000 yuan of start-up capital, he overcame many difficulties with firm belief and perseverance, and was determined to independently develop a set of input solutions suitable for Chinese characters.

**2. Stroke Structure Research and Mathematical, Physical and Chemical Coding**

Wang Yongmin first started with the internal structure of Chinese characters, and conducted an in-depth and detailed study of the strokes, radicals, and structure of Chinese characters. He found that although Chinese characters have different forms, there are only five basic strokes: horizontal, vertical, apostrophe, 捺, and folding, and most of them can be disassembled into several basic parts (i.e., roots). Therefore, he used mathematical principles to logicalize the stroke order and structural relationship of Chinese characters, and transformed them into a coding form that computers could recognize and process.

**3. Keyboard layout innovation and five-stroke font input method**

In view of the restrictions on the input of Chinese characters in the English keyboard layout, Wang Yongmin made bold innovations and optimized and adjusted the keyboard layout. He creatively proposed an encoding scheme based on 25 basic roots and distributed them across five sections of the keyboard, with each root corresponding to a key. Users only need to type the corresponding keys in the order in which the roots are arranged, and then enter the desired kanji. This input method greatly improves the efficiency of Chinese character input, makes Chinese characters "100%" presented on the keyboard, and completely breaks the deadlock that Chinese characters cannot be quickly entered into the computer.

Third, the influence and status of the five-stroke font input method

**1. A Revolution in Input Efficiency and Accuracy**

As soon as the Wubi font input method was launched, it immediately caused a sensation in China's computer circles. Its efficient input speed and accurate word selection ability have subverted people's perception of Chinese character input. Although there is a learning curve for beginners, once mastered, the typing speed can easily double, even reaching an astonishing speed of more than 200 Chinese characters per minute. Another significant advantage of the Wubi input method is its low repetition rate and high accuracy. Because its encoding is based on the shape of Chinese characters rather than pronunciation, it avoids homophone confusion and greatly reduces the input error rate, especially suitable for professional typists and scenarios with extremely high requirements for input speed and accuracy.

**2. "10,000 yards galloping" and the Chinese character coding boom**

The success of Wubi font has stimulated the enthusiasm for the exploration of Chinese character coding technology across the country, and opened a new era of "10,000 yards galloping". Many researchers have been encouraged to devote themselves to the research and innovation of Chinese character encoding, which has promoted the blossoming of Chinese character input technology. Wubi font input method is not only widely popular in China, but also its efficient and stable characteristics have won wide attention and high praise from the international community, laying a solid foundation for the popularization and application of Chinese characters in the world.

**3. Science and Technology Honor and Social Value**

Wang Yongmin's outstanding contributions have been highly recognized by the state and society. He has obtained more than 50 domestic and foreign patents, and "Wang Code" has won the National Technological Invention Award, which has become an important milestone in the process of Chinese character informatization. The birth of Wubi font input method not only solves the problem of storage and input of Chinese characters in the computer age, but also builds a bridge between Chinese and English, so that Chinese and Chinese culture can shine in the digital age, and effectively promotes the exchange and mutual learning between Chinese civilization and other cultures in the world.

Fourth, inherit the spirit of science and jointly create the glory of Chinese culture in the digital age

Wang Yongmin's story is not only a hymn to his personal scientific research achievements, but also a vivid portrayal of the Chinese nation's unremitting self-improvement, innovation and enterprising spirit. He proved with practical actions that in the face of difficulties and challenges, the Chinese people have the ability to rely on their own wisdom and strength to solve problems and promote scientific and technological progress. Today, while we enjoy the convenient experience of entering Chinese characters, we should not forget the pioneers who worked hard to digitize Chinese characters.

In the future, we should continue to inherit and carry forward the scientific spirit of Wang Yongmin and other scientists, actively promote the further development and innovation of Chinese character input technology, and enhance the expressiveness and influence of Chinese characters in the digital environment. At the same time, with the help of science and technology, we will strengthen the protection, inheritance and promotion of China's excellent traditional culture, make Chinese culture shine more brightly in the digital age, and contribute unique wisdom and strength to the construction of a community with a shared future for mankind.

The story of Wang Yongmin and the Wubi font input method is a magnificent epic of Chinese characters breaking through the wall and breaking through the culture. It reminds us that no matter how the times change and how science and technology develop, we should cherish and inherit Chinese characters, the treasure of Chinese civilization, so that they can radiate new vitality in the wave of digitalization and inject a steady stream of Chinese wisdom into the progress of human civilization.