Easy Entry of Unicode Encoded Nagari in Win 98

by Julia Fernandes    Jul 30, 2005

ISE-AIPL recently released Sugam-98 that facilitates easy entry of Unicode encoded Nagari in Windows 98 as software components for entering Unicode encoded Nagari are not available with Windows 98. Nagari script is used for writing texts of Hindi, Marathi, Sanskrit, Nepali, and lot of other languages.

Speaking to CXOtoday, Akhilesh Gupta, director ISE-AIPL, said, “The DTP professionals generally require lot of fonts and give more importance to quality of print-outs which do not require professional hinting/instruction and most of Indian fonts print fine on high resolution printers like lasers. So all of them may not give importance to high quality rendering on low resolution devices like monitors.”

In the past Indians were forced to use various proprietary encodings as there were no effective and practical standard for storing and processing Indic languages and scripts in computers.

Nowadays, Unicode is accepted as de-facto encoding standard. It prevents loss of data/information. Windows 98 does not officially support Unicode-Nagari. There are solutions for entering Unicode-Nagari in Windows 98 but they do not match the quality and simplicity of recently released software Sugam-98, maintains Gupta.

According to him, “Various offices of the state and central governments and public sector undertakings have thousands upon thousands of PCs with Windows 98 installed. The priorities should not be mindless upgrades but proper use of existing systems. We have worked hard to come up with a practical solution to enable entry of Unicode encoded Nagari in Windows 98.”

According to the company, the beauty of this solution is that it works very well with free software mainly OpenOffice.org and BabelPad.

The main component of Sugam is an OpenType font that contains glyphs of Latin and Nagari scripts, which works very well with Windows 98, 2000 and XP. It is professionally hinted (instructed) using a low-level language. Its OT Layout tables are logical and meticulously formulated. The glyphs (shapes) in this font are clean and carefully drawn and redrawn many times to avoid and remove smallest error in curves and straight lines.

According to Gupta, a single license of Sugam 98 costs Rs 800. (Sugam-98 includes a great Latin-Nagari font ‘Akhil HE’, an efficient keyb filter ‘TransLit-98′, a standard keyb filter ‘InScript-98′ and a simple (lightweight) Latin font ‘Akhil’.)

ISE-AIPL is a small software firm operating from a small town Gondia in the state of Maharashtra since 1991. The company provides software and fonts for using Nagari script on computers. The plans for facilitating entry of other Indian scripts are in the pipeline.

Tags: unicode