Q: Can WordSmith cope with Chinese corpora?
A: You can make concordances using WordSmith 3 if you have a Chinese Windows system or a language pack supporting Chinese. But other functions do not work reliably with Chinese data.
WordSmith 4 is Unicode-based, which means that it can work with all languages in the world reliably as long as your data is converted from native encodings into Unicode. The new Text Converter function in WordSmith 4 can do the conversion very easily.
WST4 is Unicode-based (UTF-16) but WST3 is not. This means that WST3 relies on your operating system for character encoding. As you use a Chinese Windows system, Chinese characters in filenames can be displayed - and Concord can indeed search and display Chinese though other WST functions cannot work reliably in WST3. WST4 is almost completely re-designed to be fully compatible with Unicode (by default, this refers to UTF16), and so Chinese characters cannot be displayed in WST4 unless they are encoded in or converted into Unicode.