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unicode ayar myanmar font encoding

what is encoding? why need it? the weakness in the Unicode Encoding for Myanmar Languages?

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ြမန်မာဘာသာသို့ (http://goo.gl/fKaij) For Burmese go (http://goo.gl/fKaij

Firstly, Let's read about what is encoding from the point of views from Mr. Htoo Myint Naung who is a member of Unicode Consortium, System Operator from Wikipedia, Managing Director from Technomation Studios & MyMyanmar Projects and follow the point of My Views.



Computers cannot process all the languages and words which human can understand. Basically, these modern electronic machines are capable of storing and computing numbers. Therefore, each alphabet of languages has to be converted into digits that computers can be accepted. 
For example, English alphabet ‘A’ is coded with ‘41’. Only through such processing, computers are able to store, print out and read the texts on the websites.
Morse code, a famous type of code.
However, such encodings for different language are not the same in different computer system and type of software which were used in different countries. For example, the system of conversion even in English language includes ANSI Encoding, ASCII Encoding and MacRoman Encoding. Therefore, ‘Encoding’ can be defined as the identification in which a symbol is represented by a digit. In ASCII Encoding, ‘A’ is coded with ‘41’ and, ‘Z’ is with ‘90’. 
Encoding Standards
While words are stored with various digits, different encoding cannot be read out when messages are sent from one computer to another or from one place to another. Therefore, the international organizations are bringing about to implement standards to solve these problems.
The first standard form to represent for English is ASCII. As English language can be stored with ASCII Encoding, the users could overcome the problems of different systems and fonts. Later, the organizations such as ISO and Unicode Consortium were formed to create standard forms of other languages. Therefore, Unicode Standard has appeared as the result of ISO and Unicode Consortium, and it is Encoding system which is being used across the world. 
Myanmar language encoding
Although ASCII is applied to Myanmar language encoding, it is not a standard form. At that time, Myanmar language encoding was based on English alphabet. For example, when the alphabet ‘U’ is pressed on the keyboard, the font which has been created as Myanmar alphabet ‘Ka’ will appear, which was designed in the font box. While the word ‘Ka’ is seen on the monitor screen, the computer memorizes it as English alphabet ‘U’. This system is not widely used in various sectors, except printing industry. Therefore, Myanmar language system used in ASCII Encoding is called ‘font’. As English alphabets were substituted with different fonts in ASCII written by different developers, they have different codes, and different systems. Moreover, there is no Myanmar language ASCII system which can be used as English language ASCII for various systems. 
Names of ASCII Encoding/Font
1. AvaLaser(Mac only)
2. CE
3.  Academy 
4.  M-Myanmar 
5. Ava 
6. Win Myanmar: Win Innwa, Win Hakha, Win Thanlwin, etc
7. W Art House, A Art House
Then, ISO and Unicode Consortium could insert Myanmar language into Unicode Standard. Although the alphabets are represented with digits in this standard, it is very contrary to the idea to substitute English alphabets with Myanmar language.  
Different digits symbolize the different fonts of ASCII system. In the group of ‘Win Innwa’ fonts , ‘Ka’ is signified as ‘75’and ‘-Ka’ as ‘250’. In Unicode, ‘Ka’ is ‘0×1000 (4096) and ‘-Ka’ is ‘0×1000 (4096)’. Therefore, there are no particular space for ‘Ka’ and ‘-Ka’ in ASCII. The Rendering System’ which can be changed ‘Ka’ and ‘-Ka’ in different contexts must be used. Only then, databases, e-mails, search engines and other application systems such as e-Government, Banking, Pos, etc will function well. 
If ‘Ka’ and ‘-Ka’ were represented for two digits, computer will memorize only one ‘Ka’ when it was asked how many ‘Ka’ are included in Myanmar meaning of ‘University. Such reply will disturb database, e-mails and search engines.  As a result, the data will not be found exactly; the orders of alphabets and data could not be arranged; the whole system will not function well. Therefore, ‘Ka’ is regarded as only one digit in Unicode Standard. Moreover, various types of upper Yayit, Lower Yayit, various ‘Autmyit, and ‘Tachaung Ngin’ of ASCII fonts cannot be seen in Unicode Standard. Each of these symbols has their standard digit, and their appearances will be adjusted by computer system.  
On reviewing this system, there are different kinds of ideas on whether ‘Encoding’ can be regarded as (http://goo.gl/UuSFy) and the ordering of words or not. 
The arrangement of words is technically termed as ‘Sorting’, in which the words are alphabetically ordered and the same alphabets are categorized in the same group. 
The topic of ‘Sorting’ will be explained in next articles. 
Encoding is personally simplified as the conversion of codes. Wikipedia explains the term of ‘Encoding’ as: ‘In communications and information processing, encoding is the process by which information from a source is converted into symbols to be communicated. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Encoding).  
Difference between Myanmar-3 fonts and Ayar Myanmar font
The fonts of Ayar Myanmar Unicode are in conformity with the Unicode code points which are expressed in the chart of International Unicode for Myanmar ethnic languages. Therefore, Ayar Unicode is useful for Myanmar language and national ethnic languages. 

1. Under Ayar Unicode system, Unicode Encoding system has not been used for typing { ေ– }, { ြ – } and { –င်္ } yet. Instead, the alphabets which come first are typed in priority. 

This is because;

2. To be able to use Ayar Unicode fonts in Adobe programs such as Photoshop and InDesign; in some software such as Java, Net, etc. that do not accept reordering the words. 

3. Not to delay in typing and browsing when computer is ordering the letters such as { ေ– }, { ြ – } and { –င်္ }. 

Unicode Encoding system is useful for ‘Sorting’. As every operating system have not recognized ordering of Myanmar alphabets, Unicode Encoding system has not been effectively applied yet. Even Linux operating system operates sorting, and can accept ordering of Myanmar alphabet, it cannot pronounce Myanmar words that are in visually disorder while sorted Myanmar words are read. 
Myanmar sorting in Linlux
Unicode Encoding and Myanmar Orthography
Unicode Encoding is created on the basis of voice system, and it is different from Myanmar Orthography of ‘Write down orderly, but voice pronunciation’. Despite there are different writing styles in Myanmar language, its orthography is strictly observed.  
Most of the eastern orthographies such as Devanagari in India as well as in the characters of China, Japan and Korea are facing the problem of ‘Encoding’. There are also different views on Unicode Encoding in neighboring countries such as Thailand, China, Korea and Japan. 
Without attacking others’ coding systems, some encoding developers in these neighboring countries are organizing the users by reviewing and developing the weaknesses of their own system. Nevertheless, encoding developers in Myanmar are emphasizing on their own sake rather than considering about the benefits of users. Moreover, these local experts are being proud of their silliness such as the lack of consideration for about other persons’ views, appreciation for other’s idea and logical discussion. In addition, out of responsiveness on the difficulties, easiness and skillfulness of users has lead to the decline of supports and praise from the users. 
No one may criticize that someone who does not follow Myanmar orthography is not a Myanmar ethnic. Likewise, the critics should have understanding of the weakness in the Unicode Encoding system. Such attitude is the best remedy and the respectful behavior towards different perspectives. Therefore, we are of the views that someone who is putting more efforts into his own activities will not need to persuade the potential users forcefully. 
Aung Khaing
Kanaung WebDesign 


asked Dec 20, 2011 in ​ေဝ​ဖန်​ချက် by acwpadmin (3,230 points)
edited Dec 20, 2011 by acwpadmin

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