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 Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc 
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Joined: Sun Feb 13, 2011 7:41 am
Posts: 13
Post Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Hi Costas,
Thanks for your wonderful software, it's already been a blessing to me. I'm interested in developing a bengali language interface, 3 translations, dictionary, etc. Seven years ago I made a unicode Bengali Bible module for e-sword, and two years ago I switched it over to TW. Bengali is the 4th-6th most spoken language in the world by various reckonings. However, Indic languages also have some unique issues with unicode display. For the most part, it's worked well so far.
In a couple of weeks I'm going to meet with the new Bangladesh Bible Society director to discuss releasing a TW Bible module for the three main Bengali translations. There's also a great Bengali Bible dictionary which can be reshaped as a TW module, and I have the relationships to make that happen. I'm not a programmer myself, though I've made an e-sword module in the past using MS Access, and I have a number of friends here who are programmers that are excited to help.

My questions for you is whether you could you work with us on some of the remaining language issues there are. For example:
- when I search for "পানি" (Pani) in Bengali, it searches for "পন" (Pn) instead; it skips the vowels. I've never encountered this before in other softwares with Bengali.
- when testing a Bengali interface, I noticed a big issue. Bengali has a different set of numerals, 0-9, mapped separately in unicode. So when I'm typing "Deutonomy 3:5" in the verse reference search box, it is typed "দ্বিতীয়বিবরণ ৩:৫" in Bengali, and the software doesn't recognize ৩:৫ as 3:5. Is there any way the search engine can be made to understand these numbers? On that note, it would also be nice to have the verse numbers within the Bible text in Bengali numbers.

I'm looking forward to your response,
Jacob


Sun Feb 13, 2011 8:27 am
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Location: Corfu, Greece
Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Hello Jacob and welcome.
Thank you for taking this effort to help out with the Bengali language (and I need to admit that this is the first time i hear of this language).
Let me try to answer the questios:
- Concerning the searching: pls, try this: click on the 'Detailed' tab and uncheck the 'Ignore case and diacritics'. Does this solve this issue?
- Concerning numbers: this is really difficult and could only be 'fixed' with a lot of effort. Usually, the only 'multi-language' assumption in software are the digits. I know this issue exists in other languages also. I suppose (with no promise) that in some places (like entering a verse reference) it might be possible to work out this issue. Let me ask: do you have a unique, one-to-one mapping of the digits 0-9 to other symbols? Are the rules of writing numbers identical otherwise?

Costas


Sun Feb 13, 2011 8:40 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Hi Costas,
Thanks for the quick reply! Bengali (a.k.a. Bangla) is the language of Bangladesh and the state of India in West Bengal, with about 240 million speakers. It has long literary history with a Nobel-prize-winning poet and is a beautiful language!

You answered my first question perfectly; that worked.

Regarding numbers, there is a exact one-to-one match between the Bengali characters and the rules are the same. This is like arabic (though in arabic "latin" numbers are more widely used, while in Bengali you almost never see latin numbers used with Bengali writing). So 1=১, 2=২, 3=৩, 4=৪, 5=৫, 6=৬, 7=৭, 8=৮, 9=৯, 0=০ and likewise 34=৩৪, 12.3=১২.৩

Any hope?

Thanks, Jacob


Sun Feb 13, 2011 9:01 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Help me out pls:
can you pls identify, in order of importance, the places in theWord where these numbers should be used?
Please, keep in mind that it is usually easier to 'display' than 'parse'.
So it is probably easier when displaying the Bible to use these number for verses (e.g. 1, 2, ...) from automatically detecting verse numbers.

It is very hard to use them everywhere, but probably in a few places it is doable,
Costas


Sun Feb 13, 2011 9:18 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Most important: Verse reference search box, being able to type "দ্বিঃবিঃ ৩:৪" for "Deut 2:4". The reason this is most important is because when you are typing in Bengali and type numbers, the Bengali numerals are typed, not latin numerals. So even though most Bengali-speakers recognize the latin numerals, each Bible search would involve mid-way switching the keyboard from Bengali (for the book names) to English (for the reference numbers).

Second: the numbers within the Bible window, such as the chapter numbers at the top and the verse numbers between each verse. This is not quite as important because Bengalis recognize the latin numbers. All the same, it would be nice to have as an option.

The next priority is in the search results box for the list of references.

One solution is for me to make a font which is like a standard unicode Bengali font but with the latin numerals having the bengali numerals displaying instead (I can do this easily, I'm a typographer). The drawbacks with this are that 1) this is breaking from unicode standard, and 2) it won't fix the verse reference search issue.

Thanks, Jacob


Sun Feb 13, 2011 9:54 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Another issue related to Bengali interface is that the Bible translation tab titles currently don't seem to support Bengali script (though they support Arabic!). Thinking that maybe it's an issue with a default font that doesn't have Bengali characters, I tried to change the default font for tab titles, but I couldn't find such an option. It would be really helpful for Bengali users to be able to name the Bible translations with Bengali script titles. Any thoughts on that?


Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:37 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
jacob.hosanna wrote:
Most important: Verse reference search box, being able to type "দ্বিঃবিঃ ৩:৪" for "Deut 2:4". The reason this is most important is because when you are typing in Bengali and type numbers, the Bengali numerals are typed, not latin numerals. So even though most Bengali-speakers recognize the latin numerals, each Bible search would involve mid-way switching the keyboard from Bengali (for the book names) to English (for the reference numbers).

Hi Jacob,
pls download beta build 1170 from http://theword.net/files/beta
In you .lng file (i suppose bengali.lng), in the [Messages] section add a line with the bengali digits like that:
Code:
digits=০১২৩৪৫৬৭৮৯

(practically, put the line below the line that reads chapter.verse.separator=':').
Try the F4-Verse reference input box and tell me if it can now recognize the bengali digits

Quote:
One solution is for me to make a font which is like a standard unicode Bengali font but with the latin numerals having the bengali numerals displaying instead (I can do this easily, I'm a typographer). The drawbacks with this are that 1) this is breaking from unicode standard, and 2) it won't fix the verse reference search issue.

No no no, don't mess with this stuff, it's so wrong...
Costas


Mon Feb 14, 2011 8:50 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
jacob.hosanna wrote:
Another issue related to Bengali interface is that the Bible translation tab titles currently don't seem to support Bengali script (though they support Arabic!). Thinking that maybe it's an issue with a default font that doesn't have Bengali characters, I tried to change the default font for tab titles, but I couldn't find such an option. It would be really helpful for Bengali users to be able to name the Bible translations with Bengali script titles. Any thoughts on that?

The default OS font should have support for these. What OS do you use?
Another option: open your bengali.lng file and at the top, uncomment the 'font=XXX' line (remove the #) and put there a font that has these glyphs,
Costas


Mon Feb 14, 2011 8:52 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Great, that fixed the input problem; now I can type fully Bengali verse references and it find it no problem. Thank you so much.

Within the Bible window, the green left-hand numbers are still latin numerals, as are the verse numbers within the text. On the top right, the red book name shows up fine but the chapter number is just boxes unless I select it. This is after uncommenting the font line in bengali.lng. It's strange, as the font has both the full set of latin and bengali characters within it.

Quote:
The default OS font should have support for these. What OS do you use?
Another option: open your bengali.lng file and at the top, uncomment the 'font=XXX' line (remove the #) and put there a font that has these glyphs,


I'm using Windows 7, which generally supports bengali script pretty well in its OS. Even when I uncommented the font line and put a correct font on, I still couldn't type Bengali characters; it turned out at ????? when I typed and displayed that way in the tab too. That's a typical symptom of places where unicode characters aren't accepted. But then arabic works, so I'm confused. Any ideas?

Thanks again, Jacob


Mon Feb 14, 2011 10:30 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
jacob.hosanna wrote:
Within the Bible window, the green left-hand numbers are still latin numerals, as are the verse numbers within the text.

Done in 1172, check pls

Quote:
On the top right, the red book name shows up fine but the chapter number is just boxes unless I select it.
This is after uncommenting the font line in bengali.lng. It's strange, as the font has both the full set of latin and bengali characters within it.

Can i have a screenshot for this?

Quote:
I'm using Windows 7, which generally supports bengali script pretty well in its OS. Even when I uncommented the font line and put a correct font on, I still couldn't type Bengali characters; it turned out at ????? when I typed and displayed that way in the tab too. That's a typical symptom of places where unicode characters aren't accepted. But then arabic works, so I'm confused. Any ideas?

Yes, this seems to be different. Please, give me the exact word you put and exactly the place and method you did that so i can repeat and fix,
Costas


Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:39 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Thanks! As you can see from the attached screenshot, all the display issues within the Bible window are now fixed (except the "previous chapter" and "next chapter" numbers. There still are the same type of issues on other windows--- for example in the window title bar at very top, the numbers are boxes.

I tried cutting and pasting a Bengali title into the drop-down title menu, and it actually worked. It's just typing directly in doesn't work for some reason (see screenshot). If you want to try fix this issue that's great, but it's not absolutely necessary.


Attachments:
Bangla TheWord menu.JPG
Bangla TheWord menu.JPG [ 19.53 KiB | Viewed 5131 times ]
Bangla TheWord screensht.JPG
Bangla TheWord screensht.JPG [ 204.62 KiB | Viewed 5131 times ]
Tue Feb 15, 2011 1:11 pm
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
OK, this is different.
Sounds strange; it this the only place you cannot input Bengali text?

Concerning the squares at the title: this is clearly a font issue; (squares are a font issue, ? are unicode problems). Do you have other programs with Bengali titles there?
Costas


Tue Feb 15, 2011 1:38 pm
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
Hi Costas,
I just fixed a OS Bengali font issue (Microsoft defaults Bengali to a font without latin characters, thus the boxes at the top), and now it shows the numbers. It looks like most of the problems have been ironed out (see screenshot)

My one concern now is that the book names in the Bible tree are in such a tiny font that in Bengali it's unreadable; I would like to have most everything in the program in bigger font due to Bengali display issues. I couldn't find the way to do this. Could you help with this? I found how to increase the Bible text font size, but not the program interface fonts.


Attachments:
Bangla TheWord interface screenshot.JPG
Bangla TheWord interface screenshot.JPG [ 188.82 KiB | Viewed 5116 times ]
Thu Feb 17, 2011 7:43 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
I see this problem here also; unfortunately there is no provision for this at all. I think the only way would be to use a font that has bigger glyphs in default sizes. Why the default size is so small?
Costas


Thu Feb 17, 2011 8:21 am
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Post Re: Bengali language UI, 3 translations, dictionary, etc
The font I set as default in the bengali.lng file and the OS is an adapted font I made which has already maximized the glyph sizes within the possible parameters; the problem is that Bengali has a lot of diacritics which extend high up and down below the main consonants. I guess it will just have to do as is.


Thu Feb 17, 2011 8:56 am
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