CHENNAI: In a key steps to elevate Tamil as a digital language, the State government has developed a Tamil word processor software - Amma MennTamizh - which is on a par with MS Word for English.
Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami released the software at the Secretariat on Tuesday and HR&CE Minister Sevoor S Ramachandran received the first copy.
The software worth Rs 300 will be given to all government offices free of cost. In the first phase, 10,000 copies of this software would be given to the government offices at a cost of Rs 30 lakh.
“This software will help to raise the status of Tamil language as a digital language on a par with western languages. Besides, it will also help to implement effectively Tamil as the official language in all government offices,” G Vijayaraghavan, Director, International Institute of Tamil Studies and Director in-charge of Tamil Development Department told Express.
He explained that Amma MennTamizh word processor included many language functions such as writing Tamil without spelling mistakes and morphophonemic errors (Sandhi Pizhai). Bilingual dictionary, suspicious pairs dictionary, native word dictionary are part of this software.
“Throughout the globe, if any language fails to become digital, it will become endangered. So, in the digital world, Tamil should be able to do all the functions as English and other western languages are doing. In that attempt, it is a milestone. This software will be continuously upgraded,” N Deiva Sundaram, a retired professor and Head of Tamil Language and Linguistics Department of University of Madras, who headed the team for developing this software said.
“The printed version of Tamil Nadu government administrative dictionary for official purposes has been converted into electronic dictionary which is a reversible one (Tamil to English and English to Tamil). MS Office Add-language facility is also available. To shift from old ASCII encoding to Unicode, encoding converter has been provided,” he said.
Explaining the importance of this software in layman’s language, Deiva Sundaram said “So far, we can type Tamil fonts in computer. Now, we have made computers to understand Tamil word structure and basic grammar. This software can proofread 12 words per second and underline what is wrong. The suggestions for right word would be 90 per cent correct since it cannot match the human brain.”
“For government employees, it is very useful. Most of them still use ASCII and when they send a file, they have to send the font also. But using this new software, even 1,000 files can be transformed into unicode in no time. The formal letters of the government have been provided as templates. If we type the numerals, this software can write it in words without any mistake. Index and alphabetical sorting is also available,” Sundaram added.
Nowadays, many Tamil magazines use English words freely in Tamil sentences. This software will convert then into Tamil and construct the sentence in pure Tamil.
One software, many functions
MennTamizh word processor includes many language functions such as writing Tamil without spelling mistakes and morphophonemic errors (Sandhi Pizhai). Bilingual dictionary, suspicious pairs dictionary, native word dictionary are part of this software. For government employees, it is very useful. Most of them still use ASCII and when they send a file, they have to send the font also. But using this software, even 1,000 files can be transformed into unicode in no time.