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Monday, May 10, 2010

Supporting Chinese hand writing in English Windows 7 without Ultimate or Enterprise Edition

Microsoft has a funny definition of the word 'upgrade'. If you are currently using English XP or Vista you can have whatever Chinese hand writing recognizers with you without paying Microsoft extra. But 'upgrading' to Windows 7, you get a downgrading of functionality in this respect unless you pay dearly.

I am not going to sit idle allowing Microsoft to charging me ransom for a functionality that is available previously and in an operating system that supports multi-lango from the ground up. This Microsoft's decision certainly deters me from upgrading my XP Tablet to one running Windows 7. I certainly will recommend any other XP or Vista Tablet users to do likewise.

So if you are one of those victims, here are relieves from being held hostage. There are two ways to do:
1) Use Pen Power (小蒙恬)
This comes with a writing pad and a suite of software to deal with Chinese characters recognition.

2) Use NJStar Pen.
This is a software only solution using your mouse as the writing instrument while the screen is the stroke painter or writing pad. Once a character is recognized, it sends the character to the application currently with the focus.

The first one is naturally more powerful and gives a more natural writing experience but if you have a tablet, NJStar Pen provides an writing experience as natural as that of Pen Power, without the need to have the writing pad tethered to your machine.

NJStar Pen is supposedly free and even if one has to purchase that, it is a lot cheaper than paying for an Ultimate edition just to write Chinese characters on irregular basis.

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