After the foundation of People's Republic of China,the chinese characters are in favor of an alphabet but decided instead to simplify many of the characters. The first list of simplifications in 1956 eliminated 29 characters and altered 486 of them, and then in 1964 a new list of 2,238 simplified characters was announced.
The emphasis in all these cases was on reducing the number of strokes, not on strengthening the phonetic and semantic information in the characters. Probably for this reason linguists have not found clear evidence that simplified characters are easier to learn.
The simplified characters are now used in China and Singapore, while Taiwan, Hong Kong and most overseas Chinese communities continue to use the traditional forms. Traditional characters have also become more popular in China, especially Southern China, in recent years.
A different set of simplified characters is used in Japan. Some of these are similar or identical to China’s simplifications, but many are not and in general they represent more conservative changes to the characters.