Last year in the media started to talk that very soon Huawei will have its own programming language Cangjie (read as “Cangjie”). Well, it looks like it won’t be long before it arrives.
It cannot be said that the news is out of the ordinary. Nowadays, more and more technology companies are investing in self-developed programming languages. Apple has Swift, Microsoft has TypeScript, Google has ART, Go, Logica, etc.
Huawei’s motivation is clear. In May 2019, US authorities restricted companies access to Google services, due to which the Chinese brand lost the ability to produce smartphones on the Android operating system and switched to its own Harmony OS (in Russia, however, it is very popular).
According to expertsthe main purpose of Cangjie is to combine two software platforms from Huawei: Harmony OS and OpenEuler in the field of application development.
If Harmony OS is relatively well-known and installed on the company’s mobile phones and tablets, then OpenEuler is a lesser known product of Huawei. It is designed for desktop use as well as cloud services and is a proprietary Linux distribution.
The system is based on the commercial distribution of EulerOS, which, in turn, is a branch of the CentOS package base. OpenEuler is optimized to work on servers with ARM processors.
The emergence of the Cangjie language would also prove that China has the same IT capabilities as other developed countries in the world. At present, most workers in the Chinese computer industry rely on C++ and Java in terms of programming languages. In the long run, this could probably make China significantly dependent on the influence of foreign ecosystems. We all remember that the large Chinese firewall allowed WeChat and other local services to develop domestically.
The creation of a programming language owned by China has the potential to stimulate the emergence of a global ecosystem of software development owned by China in the future. This is very important for the long-term future of the country’s national economy.
By the way, the name Cangjie is not accidental and, like many things in China, is full of symbolism. Chinese mythology attributes the authorship of the hieroglyphics to the court historiographer Cangjie of the Yellow Emperor (or Huangdi). The latter, by the way, is also a legendary person – in addition to writing, rumor ascribes to the period of his reign the invention of a calendar, an ax, a boat and an oar, a mortar and pestle, a bow and arrows, a dress and shoes, as well as the division of land into allotments. More acupuncture and Taoism. Cangjie is often portrayed as a man with four eyes, that is, especially perspicacious.
And very symbolically, but not surprisingly, a new method for entering Chinese characters on a keyboard or typewriter, created in 1976 by Chu Bongfu, was called Cangjie. The method is based on the decomposition of the hieroglyph into simple geometric shapes, 24 key elements correspond to the keys of the QWERTY layout (in fact, this is the first method that uses the principles of typing the usual European layout, but at the same time fully takes into account the nuances of the hieroglyphics). Chu Bongfu received a patent for his method and believed that it could well be attributed to Chinese cultural heritage. Cangjie has become open source software and is found on every computer system that supports Chinese writing, Simplified or Traditional.
So it is logical that Chinese experts argue that Cangjie is likely to become a fully Chinese programming language, i.e. a programming language with Chinese logic, otherwise Huawei wouldn’t call it Cangjie.
What is known so far? In 2022, Huawei opened internal testing. Not so long ago, a corporate R&D laboratory issued a questionnaire “Trial registration of new language -202203”, officially inviting a small group of developers to test Cangjie programming languages.
Based on the content of the questionnaire, developers need to fill in the home page title, career and company information, and then wait for the email notification.
According to sources, at the moment the team and participants in internal testing are still improving the code.
Another reason that we will have to learn a new Chinese programming language very soon is that Huawei has filed a trademark application for Huawei Cangjie, Cangjie language, etc. The classification includes scientific instruments, design studies, etc.
Among the juicy details of the upcoming Chinese novelty, there are statements by some test participants. According to anonymous user of the Chinese Q&A Network Zhihu (analogue of Yandex Q), the Chinese programming language inside is allegedly not quite Chinese. The source claims that Cangjie has nothing to do with “Chinese” and the syntax is similar to go + java.
The more interesting is what we will see in the final. Will it be some kind of great Chinese know-how or an old, kind and already familiar “new code” adapted to the Asian flavor?
Meanwhile, there is no doubt that respected engineers from Huawei will complete the work they have begun. The company has all the capabilities and resources to complete the project and the subsequent global expansion of Cangjie. In the end, the purchase of a Chinese smartphone has ceased to be something unnatural, as well as the purchase of Chinese cars and any other equipment. The range of both is expanding every day, the catalog M Video and El Dorado confirmation of this.
What are your predictions for Cangjie? Ready to dive into the abyss of comprehension of a new Chinese literacy?