周有光 , The Father of Pinyin

See the Tania Branigan< full story about the 102 - year old father of PinyinPinyin, or more formally Hanyu pinyin, is the most commonly used Romanization system for Standard Mandarin. Hanyu is the Han (Chinese) language, and pinyin means "phonetics", or more literally, "spelling sound" or "spelled sound".Developed by a government committee in the People's Republic of China (PRC), the system was initially approved by the Chinese government on February 11, 1958.The International Organization for Standardization adopted pinyin as the international standard in 1982,and since then it has been adopted by many other organizations. Since January 1, 2009, it is also the official romanization system in the Republic of China (ROC).It is used to teach Chinese schoolchildren and foreign learners the standard pronunciation of Mandarin Chinese, to spell Chinese names in foreign publications and to enter Chinese characters (hanzi) on computers., Zhou YouguangIn 1954, the Ministry of Education of the People's Republic of China (PRC) created a Committee for the Reform of the Chinese Written Language. This committee developed Hanyu pinyin based upon several preexisting systems: (Gwoyeu Romatzyh of 1928, Latinxua Sin Wenz of 1931, and the diacritic markings from zhuyin). The main force behind pinyin was Zhou Youguang. Zhou was working in a New York bank when he decided to return to China to help rebuild the country after the Korean War. He became an economics professor in Shanghai and was assigned to help the development of a new romanization system. ( 周有光 ), on the 50th anniversary of the introduction of his alphabet in this story from the Guardian online paper<.