Re: Arabic transliteration
|From:||Danny Wier <dawier@...>|
|Date:||Wednesday, November 13, 2002, 23:11|
I'm coming out of MONTHS of being set at nomail, but anyway I'm back. I'm
still the guy in Texas, hopefully moving back to Austin soon.
From: "Isaac A. Penzev" <isaacp@...>
> I've just started working over a new conlang project. The original script
> for the conlang should be Arabic. I'm sure I cannot post messages here in
> Ar-script even with my mail client permitting me to use Unicode -- the
> server messes them up, doesn't it? And quite few people have Arabicsupport
> in their OS's...
Well, you really need an NT-grade OS for Hebrew or Arabic. I have XP Home
and it works fine. I'm in the process of (attempting to) teaching myself
Arabic right now. I learned some Farsi a while back, and I'll have to
reaquaint myself with it since my girlfriend is Iranian-American.
I pretty much mastered Arabic writing already -- and found it to be a great
shorthand, if you can get used to the right-to-left writing. I'd recommend
Ruq'ah script for handwritten, but Naskh (used for printing books) and
Thuluth (used for Islamic and other inscriptions) work fine too.
> Is there any ASCII-friendly scheme for ***transliterating*** Ar-script(NOT
> a transcription!!! -- I know X-SAMPA!), or should I introduce my own one?
There's a system called Qalam ("pen"): http://eserver.org/langs/qalam.txt.
My personal translit system uses non-ASCII characters like s-caron,
circumflex vowels and eth and thorn.
UniPers is a proposed Latin orthography for Farsi,
> I think I also need a Farsi keyboard driver for Windows98. I found (and
> downloaded and installed both in the college and at home) a patch with
> Hebrew and Arabic cp*.nls and kbd*.kbd. It works more or less good (though
> it still doesn't permit to change font size in Word2K), but with [AR]
> keyboard I can input only Arabic chars, but I'm afraid I'll need some
> diacritics (like Persian 'gaf' [U+06AF] or 'veh' [U+06A4])...
> A reference to any other good utility will be appreciated.
> My configs are Win98Ru/MSOffice2K +IE5.0/OE5 (college) :: +Opera6.0/OE6
Veh, or feh with three dots above, is an archaic Persian letter today, but
it is still used in Kurdish and (occasionally) in Arabic words of foreign
origin. It's included in the free MS fonts because of the latter usage,
which is quite uncommon.
Do XP keyboard drivers work for Win 95/98/Me? I don't think they do, and too
bad, because XP has Arabic, Farsi and Urdu support. The problem with using
Arabic scripts is the fact that there are different glyphs for initial,
final, medial and isolated consonants, not to mention ligatures for
two-consonant groups (like _la:_ and the preposition _fi_ "in") as well as
the special form for Allah. But good news kids! The rich text tables
required (if you use Win 98 or Me) for connected text, along with some other
Arabic/Farsi/Urdu fonts, can be found at
Also, Internet Explorer 5 and later have Arabic language support which
includes several fonts, my favorite being Traditional Arabic. And MS Word
97/2000/2002 have Unicode character support (they also have the huge Asian
Or, you could use a non-Unicode Arabic font, like those used in WordPerfect.
But it's no good for the Internet. You need Arabic support for IE to look at
websites like aljazeera.net, the well-known Qatari news service.
Disclaimer: I am in no way associated with Microsoft, Al-Jazeera, or the
Church of Scientology.