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IWrite32 - users' manual


Installing IWrite32
Defining transliteration map
Creating documents using IWrite32
Printing a document
Mailing a document
Faxing a document
Knows bugs/issues
Support etc.

Installing IWrite32


IWrite32 is very easy to install. I still don't have a SETUP program ready. So, for now follow these instructions to install the software on your computer :
  • First, get some freeware fonts for your language.
    • A good collection of Bengali fonts is available from Bengali Adda. The map file Bengali.map will work with this font set. You may want to customize the map file to suit your own style.
    • Following is a list of freeware Hindi fonts. The map file Jagran.map will work with all these fonts. You should customize this map file before using as my knowledge of Hindi is very limited. This file should be treated as a starting point only.

      If your are familiar with the ITRANS notation scheme, you could use the file Samachar.map contributed by Yashwant K. Malaiya.

    • For other fonts, you can use a standard search engine and find out for yourself.

  • Now install the application components.
    • Execute IWrite32Arc.exe to extract the necessary files in a directory tree under one directory. Following is the structure of the directory tree:
      
                <Extract Directory>     [Program file, Registry file]
                        |
                        |--- Docs       [This HTML help file]
                        |
                        |--- Samples    [Sample files]
             
      Samples will contain further subdirectories each of which will have Maps and Docs for Bengali, Hindi and Marathi languages.
  • Execute IWrite32.exe. You will be prompted to choose a map file. Choose an existing map file or create one and then choose it. You must select a map file before you can convert any text (and complete the setup).
  • Type your name in the editor and press F4. You will see some strange characters on a new window. Don't worry, it's very normal. Select the entire text and set the correct font (using Edit - Select font ... menu option). You should see your name, probably misspelled. If it is misspelled, retype your name as per the map file you are using and convert again using F4. Read on for more information.
That ends the basic installation. If you are using IWrite32 for Bengali or Hindi, you should be able to load the sample files from the Samples or ITrans subdirectory and convert them properly. Otherwise, I don't have a map file for you as part of this package. However, you can still use this package after you define a map file for yourself.

If you create a new map file and/or modify an existing one, I would appreciate if you send it to me so that I can include it in the package. This will make others' lives considerably simpler.

This help file is available in the Docs subdirectory for future reference.

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Defining transliteration map


In order to convert the English text into your language, IWrite32 needs to know:
  • Which character to replace and by what
  • How to handle multiple consonant characters without vowels in between (yuktakshar)
  • How to apply a vowel to a consonant/a collection of consonants
The transliteration file contains many lines, each describing a way of handling a group of characters. Each line has the following format :

<English characters><wsp><stand alone characters><wsp><applied as><wsp><type><wsp><sides>

    Description of each component in the format :

<English Characters> The characters that you will type and want to get converted into your language. You can use any character in this field except white space (space and tab characters).

This field is case-sensitive.

<wsp> Linear white space (space character or tab)
<stand alone characters> When the <English characters> are typed without any adjascent consonant/vowel. Example : aasmaan
You can use any character in this field except white space (space and tab characters).

This field is case-sensitive.

<applied as> When the <English characters> are typed together with (before or after) another set of <English characters>. Example : aasmaan
You can use any character in this field except white space (space and tab characters).

This field is case-sensitive.

<type> Fixed values : Consonant or Vowel or StandAlone. Consonant and Vowel are self-explanatory. StandAlone means no vowel or consonant can be applied to this sound. If a vowel is found after a standalone sound, the vowel's <stand alone characters> will be echoed after the StandAlone sound (rather than the vowel being applied which is the case for consonants). 

This field is not case-sensitive.

<sides> Fixed values : PreFix, PostFix, Both, Around, AroundPost and None 

This value implies how the sound (vowel/consonant) is applied to a preceding consonant. PreFix means this sound goes before preceding consonant (e.g. likhna). PostFix means this sound goes after preceding consonant (e.g. meraa). Both means this sound consists of two parts which wrap the preceding consonant (I know of examples in Bengali only). Around means that although the letter appears before some other consonant in English script, at should actually be applied after the succeeding consonant(s) in converted text (e.g. nirbhul). AroundPost means that the consonant can act both as described in Around and as a PostFix (e.g. nirbhul and chakra). None means this sound is never applied to any consonant. 

This field is not case-sensitive.

A note on <English characters>, <stand alone characters> and <applied as>

Although you can use any character(s) while defining these three sets, remember that the backslash (\), plus (+) and hyphen (-) are special characters. They have special meanings in the map files as described in below. So, if you want to include any of them in your pattern, prepend a backslash before them, i.e. use double backslash (\\), \+ and \- respectively.

These three sets of characters are the most important part of the transliteration map. They decide what is converted into what. So for each sound in your language, you have to find the proper character(s) in your font (use Character Map in Accessories) and note down their ASCII or extended ASCII codes.

These characters can be plain ASCII characters or a combination of ASCII and extended ASCII. Plain ASCII characters are written as is. Extended ASCII characters can be written as hex or decimal or octal numbers. The prefix shows the number used : \x for hex, \d for decimal and \o for octal numbers. Extended ASCII characters MUST be separated from each other and from ASCII characters by a '+' character.

If any of these sets has no characters, use a '-' chatacter. Please remember that the <English characters> set cannot have '-' (nothing) as the data (although \- is a valid pattern).

With this information, let's look at some sample transliteration maps:
 
aa B \xA1 Vowel PostFix
au A - Vowel None
i C \xA2 Vowel PreFix
r l \d209+\xCB Consonant AroundPost
tr \x9c - Consonant None
So, now if my input text contains "aar", output will be "Bl" which, when viewed in your font, will represent something. Similarly, if the input text contains "raa", the output will be "l\xA1" (where \xA1 is the character having ASCII code 0xA1).

If you think you are still confused, drop me a line stating your problem and I will try to help you out.

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Creating documents using IWrite32


As usual, use the File - New menu to create a new, empty document. Start typing your text. When you are through, you can save it using File - Save menu. You can convert it using your transliteration map by pressing F4. This will open a new editor sheet and display the converted text in it. You can change the font of any part of the original or converted text to suit your needs. Once changed, this font will be remembered for your next session. If you are not happy with the converted text, modify the text you typed in and repeat the process. IWrite32 will re-use the transliteration window for showing converted text, if the window is still open. If you modify the output document in any way and attempt to transliterate the original document once again, IWrite32 will prompt you to save the output document. However, you may choose not to save it and proceed.

Please remember that if you change style or font of any text, and want to see the change later, you must save it. IWrite32 does not save font information for individual parts of text. So, next time you start a new file, it will start editing in the last English font you used. And when you convert the text, it will use the last Indian font you used. So, if you change the style of any part of a converted text and close the sheet without saving, you can convert the text once again, but you will have to re-do all style changes once again.

You can also embed English text in your document. If you want a section of your text passed through unconverted, wrap it between <Eng> and </Eng> tags. The text will be passed through unconverted and displayed in the English font you are currently using.

Note that the <Eng> and </Eng> are case-sensitive. So, if you use <ENG> </ENG> or <eng> </eng>, IWrite32 will convert the tags along with embedded text.

If you need on-line reference to the transliteration map you are currently using, press F5. This will display a dialog with a table containing sounds in your language and corresponding character sets in English. Press the Escape key to close the dialog.

Please note that IWrite32 is guided by the transliteration map that you define. If you define a sound with small letter(s), use the same small letter(s) in your text too. Do not use capital letters or a mix of smalls and capitals unless your transliteration map takes care of such text. IWrite32 will pass-through any character(s) not defined in the transliteration map as is and the output might look strange.

Do not insist on writing the first character of a sentence in capital letter.

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Printing a document


Printing a document is exactly similar to printing in Notepad or Word. Choose File - Print... menu option, select a printer and hit OK. IWrite32 is printer independent. You can use any printer supported by Windows to print your documents. If the fonts that you use for editing your document are printer downloadable, you should get a WYSIWYG print-out.

Before printing a document you can preview it and make sure that the format of the print-out is as expected. You can Preview and Print both the English and the converted documents.

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Mailing a document


IWrite32 offers a simple mailing functionality. It uses MAPI to mail the document - so you must have Microsoft Windows Messaging installed and enabled on your machine. For more information on how to setup messaging, refer help pages on Windows Messaging in your system help (Help command in Start menu of your system).

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Faxing a document


Faxing in Windows usually means printing using a FAX driver. You may or may not be able to fax your documents depending on whether you have installed a faxing software that emulates a printer. If you use WinFax, QuickLink, etc. you can send faxes from within IWrite32.

To fax a document, follow these steps:

  • Choose File - Print ... menu.
  • In the dialog that opens, choose the fax driver as the printer.
  • Hit OK
This should send the fax correctly to the other side.

Please note that IWrite32 as such has no faxing capability. It depends on regular faxing softwares to send faxes. So, you have to have a modem, a telephone connection and a compatible faxing software to send faxes from IWrite32.

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Known bugs/issues


IWrite32 is a small and simple tool. It does not have scope for large scale bugs. However, I did my part as a "real programmer" and packed in a few bugs efficiently in such little space. It is upto you to find them and get them fixed (by me, of course :-).

However, following is a list of issues that I came up with and still don't have a solution for.

  • The conversion is not yet quite perfect. Although, it has worked correctly so far with all the data that I fed in, I still have this uneasy feeling that there could be some silly bugs hiding somewhere. If you find any, please send me your map file and data file and I will try to fix it.
  • IWrite32 does not use any proprietory format for saving files. Instead it saves files in standard text or rich text formats. So, there is no way for IWrite32 to tell a converted document from an English document. It is upto you to use the tool properly.

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Support etc.


Well, now comes the tricky part. You see, this is a charityware. You shouldn't expect formal support etc. for this tool. I keep getting mails from people mostly with questions about setting up the map files. I usually help them out - after all it is a tool that I developed. However, it may take sometime before I get back to you with an answer. Please bear with me.

I wrote this tool for myself and later realised that it could be useful to you too and therefore I let you use it. I am not liable for any kind of support although I promise that I will try my best. I too have my regular work and I am not left with much time to spare at the end of a day. So, I will try to provide support as best I can but don't let your expectations be too high.

However, I am always open to new ideas, bug reports, suggestions, etc. (even questions). So, keep those mails coming. You can always reach me at subhabrata.biswas@usa.net.

I will keep my website posted with the latest version of IWrite32. So visit http://members.tripod.com/sbiswas/IWrite32/IWrite32.html often and get the current version of IWrite32.

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Thank you for your interest in IWrite32. I sincerely hope that you will find this utility useful.