• Elijah Wilcott

    Thanks Ash! You’ve given me a lot of encouragement in my study of characters. The Master Class is great so far.

  • Elijah Wilcott

    Ash, I’ve got a question: A friend recently talked me into learning the Cangjie keyboard input method as a means to improving learning characters. Do you have an opinion on this?

    http://www.keepingupwiththewangs.com/2019/02/07/non-pinyin-input-no-way-well-maybe/

    • Ash

      Sorry for the late reply! Someone told me that there was a question here (I didn’t get email notification).
      First, two things:
      1. Thanks for the positive feedback on the Masterclass. Glad you’re liking it. It’s a ton of information to digest!
      2. Is the person who recommended this to you from Hong Kong?

      I actually use Cangjie, since I have to type ancient characters a lot. If I had to look up all of the pronunciations, that’s all I’d be doing. The version of the Cangjie input method I use supports over 70k characters.

      However, as a character learning tool, to be totally blunt, it’s terrible. The breakdowns have nothing to do with how the characters actually work (they are 100% surface structure!). To type the same exact component, you have to type it differently depending on what part of a character it shows up in. I’m always amazed that I can type characters I’ve never seen before with ease, but some common characters I can’t seem to ever remember (because their Cangjie breakdowns make no sense to me).
      Having said all of that, now that I’ve gone through the (excruciating) pain of learning Cangjie, it is rather convenient. For the research I do, I have to use it. But, I’m not sure it’s worth all of the pain and suffering if you don’t need it.