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Re: [WMASTERS] charset and grantha
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First I want to thank Prof. Hart, Kumar, Maa Angiah and
Kathir for expressing their views about one or both
of my two proposals about characters to be used in tamil and
in the context of tamil-computing.
I know many must be very busy at this time, but
I would like to hear comments ( positive or negative or neutral),
if it would be possible, from Tamil Nadu Standardization Committee
members, Muthu, Dr. K. Srinivasan, Kalyan, Thiru Naa Govidasamy, Thiru
Anbarasan, Thiru Nagu Chinnasamy,
Mani Manivannan, Dr.N. Kannan of Germany, Dr. Anu, Dr. Sam
Swaminathan, and several others like Gopinath, Dr. Vasu Ranganathan
Dr. Kuppusamy(kalvi) et al.
I've briefly described a proposal for writing an extended
set of non-tamil phonemes. You can visit
the following URL for more details:
The merit of this system is that we avoid 8 or more explicit symbols
but still we represent more phonemes. If we use this system even a
few times, I believe, we'll quickly be able to assimilate the idea.
When we read a word, normally we don't read all the individual
letters but our eyes quickly pick up 'patterns' and learn to associate
with the trained 'sound', so I believe, it won't take long for us
to learn to ignore the first pure mey in a word that helps to modify the
following letter etc.
The second proposal is more conventional in the sense I've retained
four common grantha letters plus the sri symbol, but I've added
a symbol for 'fa' which looks very close to tamil 'va'. In addition
I've suggested a new uyir (Ekaarath thiriboli which we can call it
vERREkaaram, or puththEkaaram) for which I've provided two symbols.
This second proposal is at the URL
The drawback of the second proposal is it can not represent
additional phonemes like G, B , Dh, D at the beginning of a
word. Of course we can adopt a part of the previous proposal
but that would be mixing two approaches less optimally.
Further I've provided a character table, for a start, where the
positions I've chosen can be changed, based on other considerations,
if need be. I've devoted two places for diacritical markers
specifically for a later needs such as to denote other phonemes.
I've included greek symbol mu ( since it is used for micro meter and
other purposes as well), copyright symbol and registered trade mark
symbol. I've omitted nju, njU, ngu, ngU, but I've indicated how
these can be written if ever we need to use. Also I've omitted
the numerical symbols for 10, 100, 1000. In tamil we have symbols
for various fractions etc. but these are not needed today. We
need to move forward with some insight and also as Kumar puts it
with some backward compatibility.
When you find time please give some thought and consideration.
@The attempts by Selva is remarkable in trying to
@write grantha characters. On the other hand in his
@character set he is adding another grantha (?) character
@for fh sound.
@I really like the idea of writing the grantha by using
@"oitham". It will take a humongous effort to train ourselves
@to write in that fashion. May be new grammer rules have to
@be built to handle these styles.
@On the other hand, having these characters provides
@flexibility to the language to express some sounds
@that are not present in the system. So what we should
@do: Add more grantha characters (like fh) or drop all
@these characters and resort for "Aitham"?
@One best way is to keep these grantha characters for
@transition in the character set and encourage people
@to write these without grantha characters, use alternate
@Tamil words (Like Maa. Angiah's efforts) and eventually
@we may one day be able to live without these extra
@characters. Until then, we should have them. I always
@expects a backward compatibility to the earlier systems
@how so ever falty the earlier system is. It may be
@hindering the development in rocket speed but will allow
@everyone to catch-up with the development.
@Even when E.V.Ra introduced new schemes to get rid of ORNL
@the T.N. Govt., did not phase out these ORNL over night. They
@allowed a time period for everyone to change and adapt to the new
@system. That is the way it should be.
@Kumar Mallikarjunan, Ph.D.
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