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Re: glyph choices for char.encoding -version 1.2
I am Sorry about the Capital letters that I used. I did not actully
mean to Shout but to emphasize.I thought we "unofficially" had this
convention (As you can see it in "BUT ALSO" in your mail below -
Hope you are not shouting there).
I would have used block letters if we can exchange html files as
mails (Its actually possible in Netscape mail) :-)
I might sound silly but let me once again explain why I keep saying
I am just going by my little bit of computer knowledge. I am really not
an experienced guy in Tamil related activities.
About Old Style Letters:
1. First point is we are "encoding" Tamil Characters. Where its possible
we are giving one single code otherwise 2/3 in the form of
It means one/two/three numbers for "One Letter". Fine.
2. How electronic arhiving will be stoped if we do not have "Glyphs"
for old-style letters?
3. For storages those codes logically mean the same.
4. For people's understanding they still mean the same.
5. Now the question is whether to show them in Old or New Tamil form.
6. Is anybody there opposed to see old Tamil work with new "lai", "nai"
etc. Are they going to lose anything???
If I have missed any technical point PLEASE EDUCATE me. I am really
inexperienced. Me too dont want to waste Your and My time.
Regarding Tamil Numerals:
1. My point was based on "Their usage in current days".
I agree that thats not the only factor to look at.
Yes. Its my mistake. I **apologize** for the same.
Regarding transliteration (diacritical marks):
1. We have a set of codes that will map to all the characters in Tamil.
That is we have a **representation** of all the characters that can
be used to store all the Tamil characters.
2. Now "Standardizing" codes for anything else that will again
the same thing is first of all redundant.
Even if it is done, we can not anyway render it straight as Tamil.
We have to do translation.
So, if we are going to do the translation anyway, whats wrong in
it in a different standard/font?
3. First of all transliteration is not something that can be done from
single language. Even a German should be able to transliterate Tamil
in his/her own language. So, what do we do for all the languages in
4. There should be always one set of "codes" that will represent Tamil.
Whatever transliteration is done it should be "Language Specific".
It should be Language-to-Language process.
Regarding the Grantha Letters:
1. Yes. **Ideally** I would like to take Anu's stance (Only the language
2. But, I slightly differ using the "representation" concept. I do not
really see any difference between "K+Sha" and "Ksha". If that
one Grantha character from Tamil without losing anything I would be
really really happy.
If you see the writing style(Shape) of "Ksha", you can notice that it
is nothing but "ka"+"sha". So, why not do this???
Do you think I am still wrong atleast about "Ksha"???
Dr.K. Kalyanasundaram wrote:
> Dear Nagu:
> > In my opinion we can leave Tamil Nuermals. Its something
> > 99.99 % out of Tamil. Even if its needed in some special
> > cases (assuming that the user will use some GUI systems),
> > it can be done using different "fonts".
> It has been said repeatedly that the purpose of the whole
> character encoding exercise is NOT just to simplify
> word-processing of individuals BUT ALSO for electronic archiving
> of our very rich ancient literature. Paper storage is fast
> disappearing and we are already making transition to electronic
> archival. Already there are major efforts at UC Berkeley,
> UCologne, UChicago of large scale electronic archiving of
> all of the tamil literature (old published ones as well as unpublished
> ones still at the palm-leaf level). Prof. Hart already mentioned
> Tamil Lexicon. Dr. Thomas Malten has a huge tamil electronic
> archive that he would like to place on the WWW. Dr. James Nye
> of U Chicago is looking forward to the day when the present
> activities of microfilming of ancient tamil books will be turned into
> electronic form. The need to have dedicated OCR packages for Tamil
> has already been recognized by TNC. The amount of etext may be
> symbolically small now but certainly in a decade we will have
> a significant part of the ancient tamil literature in electronic form.
> Having said that, it is silly to say again and again that "let the
> old characters -be tamil numerals or old style lai, nai etc go
> elsewhere in some other font and let people have another
> standard for this". We cannot have two fonts (and hence two
> standards) for these related tasks, both to do with tamil computing.
> As I said to Anu in my earlier postings, there is no compulsion
> that everyone has to use every glyph that goes in the encoding
> scheme. This statement applies not only to grantha but also to
> those that are there to enable electronic archiving of ancient
> literature. Please purge this notion from your head first.
> I keep talking about these old style characters not because I am
> going to use them for my present-day correspondance in tamil.
> Certainly not .
> We need to have one comprehensive character encoding for
> everything we want to do with tamil. So your statement -
> it can be done using different "fonts" - does not make sense to me.
> I am sorry that I keep repeating this - the message still seem
> to be not getting through.
> > Also because, it does not look good to "encode" two number
> > system in an "ecnoding standard". One number can have only
> > one code. How does it matter for calculations whether its
> > Tamil number or Roman number.
> When we include them I see them as some glyphs with which
> the numerals were written in good old days. I have no plans to
> use them (nor you) as a numeral. If you see it as another alphabet
> glyph, where does the question of having two number scheme
> appearing in the same scheme and associated mathematics arise?
> > Yes the crux of the problem is we are trying to have TWO
> > ENCODING SCHEMES for ONE LANGUAGE in
> > ONE STANDARD.
> Let alone the diacritical markers for a minute. Even with plain
> ascii, people use them all the time to write transliterated tamil.
> Already we all agreed to have keyboard input in the form
> of transliterated tamil. We will soon decide on a standard for
> transliteratd tamil. A 8-bit tamil/roman font will allow typing
> tamil text using either scheme. So there will always be the
> possibility of having two encoding schemes for the same
> language. So I do not see anything extra-ordinary happening
> here with Tamil. The above will be true with ANY 8-bit
> roman/indian language encoding scheme.
> You need to ban people writing in transliterated tamil if you
> want to have A SINGLE ENCODING SCHEME IN ONE
> LANGUAGE IN ONE STANDARD. Sorry for using
> bold letters. I hate people using bold letters (it amounts to
> shouting in internet norms) when they themselves have not
> understood the purpose of the current exercise.
> I am sorry to state that, indirectly you seem to say the
> same thing as Anu. In short, Nagu, the purpose of having
> old characters -whether it is tamil numerals or old style nai/lai,
> is NOT to force people to go back to these glyphs.
> They are there, I repeat, to facilitate electronic archiving
> activity of ancient tamil literature.
> People like Prof. Schiffman see an absolute necessity for them.
> If we do not put them, I guarantee you, that before long, all
> electronic archiving activities of tamil will have their own fonts.
> I am very much interested in promoting electronic archiving
> of ancient tamil literature in accurate form. So is my concern here.
> I also repeat that UNICODE/ISCII schemes do have these
> tamil numerals and I cannot see how one can have compatibility
> between the present schemes if one alone has some glyphs for
> which there are no counterparts in the other.
> So, please re-orient your thinking/analysis on these lines
> and let us discuss any technical problems if any to have these
> old style characters along with the current ones.
> If we are clear about what we will be doing with the proposed
> tamil fonts in the coming decade, the reasons for above will
> become clear.
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