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Romanization refers to the transliteration or transcription of a non-Latin word into Latin letters. This may be done so that speakers familiar with the Roman alphabet may pronounce a word, or so that the word may be typed into certain computer systems (in some cases, email addresses and World Wide Web URLs must be typed in ASCII).

For Japanese words, this process is called romaji. The primary systems of romanization include Hepburn, Nihon-shiki, and Kunrei-shiki.

For Chinese words, there are several proposed romanization systems. The system used by the Communist leadership of the People's Republic of China is called hanyu pinyin. However, the Chinese government based in Taiwan prefers the Wade-Giles romanization system. In the United States Pinyin has superseded Wade-Giles as the preferred method of romanization, as it has in the vast majority of other countries, and Sinologists currently utilise solely Hanyu Pinyin around the world.