Enabling Sinhala/Tamil support

Few days back I was playing around with Sinhala Tamil Unicode kit by ICTA (Information Communication Technology Agency) of Sri Lanka on my windows box. It was really cool with dual language support.

There was a time when most of the operating systems came bundled with ASCII(American Standard Code for Information Interchange) which only had mere 127 characters and they were all occupied by english letters and numbers and symbols. Then of course anybody didn’t have the luxury of using either softwares or viewing web pages in their own native language(s) as they would have liked it.

That’s where Unicode came into being. And ever since the advent of Unicode all these things have thrown out of the window because Unicode was a breakthrough technology and it can support over 65000 characters. With Unicode all the languages are given a range of characters to accommodate their own character codes. That’s where both Sinhala and Tamil get their allotted space.

Now although the range is set for both the languages in Unicode someone had to take up the challenge of developing the codes for both the languages. Developing and setting keyboard layout specially for language like Tamil which has more than 250 characters on a keyboard which is originally designed to accommodate mere 26 characters(English) again going to be a don’ting task.

That’s where in Sri Lanka ICTA should be praised for taking this project successfully in collaboration with the UCSC (University of Colombo School of Computing). This was a project which took months and months to complete.

And now both Sinhala and Tamil Unicode is available to download on,
http://www.locallanguages.lk/sinhala_how_to_install_in_english.html

The Sinhala Unicode is named as Wijesekara and Tamil is named as Renganathan (for a reason that I really have no idea). You can download the package that best fits your box and enjoy working and viewing stuffs on your own native language.

Now since Sinhala and Tamil Unicode is made possible we should be able to see many a revolutions in the world of software when it comes to Language Localization in Sri Lanka, Taking it to a new unseen dimension.

Already you can see an increase in the number of web sites (Solely)compiled in Sinhala and Tamil in Sri Lanka in the recent past. No doubt that this will pave way for many a local writers to enter web. And have their say in their own comfortable way..!

Dotnet Forum Link Partners

DotNet Forum is an innovative initiative by Microsoft Sri Lanka. DotNet Forum gathers most of the Microsoft Developpers and learners of SriLanka to single spot where they share their knowledge on latest technologies, developments and solutions by the everso dominating software giant Microsoft.


Dot Net Forum Link Partner

Not stopping there DotNet Forum has been actively supporting the growth of Microsoft Technologies through out SriLanka. hence, breaking the technology barier by constantly organizing user group meetings which are normally held at Microsft SriLanka located at Nawam Mawatha (Microsoft SriLanka training room), doing guest lectures in part of the country and at any university upon invitation which are totally free of charge (And currently one such programme is held at IIT. Which I feel so privillged to be part of it and it continues for the next week as well. So I’m looking forward to it with great anticipation.) and one of the utmost succsessful event for this year happens to be the DotNet Forum held at Mt.Lavinia Hotel.Trust me it was a trumendeous success for Microsoft SriLanka. Where People were flocked in numbers (Students, Profesionals and Geeks all in one room guess what..?) and they were treated with the best from both technical and the non tachnical aspect of life.. I felt so lucky, so privillaged to be part of it and learned a lot on one of the breaktrough technologies by Microsoft called Silverlight which concentrates on the development of RIA’s (Rich Internet Applications). But I’m afraid will it overtake it’s counterpart Flash by Adobe inc since I’ve sticked with it for years now(When it comes to the develpment of animated funky sites and intros).

And this post is written specially to join hands with the LinkPartners Programme by Dotnet Forum which helps both our blogs (or personal sites) and dotnetforum.lk build back links. And also to share the wealth of technology among the dotnet forum members and our readers so in other words it can also be called as Connecting Techi People.Ultimately it also helps us improve some traffic on both on our site and Dotnet forum.lk. So I encourage all ma readers to just drop there on your leisure and check it out because it really worths a visit.

Finally I would like to express ma heart felt thanks to Mr. Wellington for coming all the way upto IIT and spending his precious time with us to share his knowledge on some interesting technologies by Microsoft. Namely, ASP.net, AJAX frame work by Microsoft, Silverlight and WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation). Actually it was an entreeting session that we had with him on last wednes day. Which also left a big thinking ahead of me when it comes to the development of web apps (Where I play alot..!) because all the while to be honest I have not been an ardent supporter of Microsoft products simply because of the proprietry barrier and virus threats, still I gotto accept the fact that I learned my basics on a Windows 98. And I’m used to hang around alot with Apache, MySQL and PHP (known as the AMP whether it is LAMP on Linux or WAMP on a Windows Box).

Then again what about IIS, MySQL , and ASP.net (v3.5)..? Still I’m thiking at that but I know one thing for sure database driven apps are made amazingly easy with Visual Studio and ASP.net 3.5 duo. But I still I need some time to play with ASP and come to terms with it..

Stage is Set to go for the geeks

The stage Craft presented by students of IIT takes another episode this year at Bishops College auditorium later this month (february 2008).

               Stage Craft

After the great success that we had last time at Elphinston this time the event promises even more. I was asked to design the Ticket for this years event. Trust me I haven’t done such stuff ever before and this is going to be the frist time that one of my designs gonna get it’s printed version. What next I’m looking forward to it eagerly.

Anyway I welcome you all to the event to witness how techi guys go crazy on stage. Looking forward to you all.

Linux Magazine out of the Blocks

The first ever linux magazine in the crazy island of Sri Lanka makes it’s way. The magazine only offers an electronic edition of it. We will be very happy to see a hard copy in the near future as well. Because I don’t enjoy reading PDFs at all for that matter.

 Boom !!! Big mistake I forgot to enterprise the name of it, it’s Babytux Digest. Babytux Team comprises of many Geeks in the known world of Linux in Sri Lanka. To mension few of them,

Arunan Skanthan arunan@babytux.org
Buddhika Siddhisena bud@babytux.org
Tyrell Perera tyrell@babytux.org
Suchetha Wijenayake
Hasmin Abdul Cader
Karthiga Ratnam

And the Magazine was launched at a charming ceremony held at Commens Coffee shop on Wednesday the 5th July. You can download the magazine at it’s official site digest.babytux.org

The first issue itself introduces a brand new browser software called Flock, an intreging article on Kaffeine, a nice tutorial on InkScape and in tech news: the launch of Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (dapper drake) in Sri Lanka

 I downloaded the first Issue and got the permission from one of our senior lectures at IIT to make it available at the IIT Library. So guys at IIT can look forward to it at the library.

If you are really intersted with babytux and wanna hear more about it you can always subscribe to it’s group mail at,
groups.google.com/group/babytuxdigest

Software Freedom Day 2007

Software Freedom Day (SFD) is shedulled to be celebrated all around the globe on the 15 th of september. The srilankan opensource software community has already made arrangemens to celebrate it in a high node down here in SriLanka along with the rest of the world. FOSS has arranged series of events to mark the event wich will start from 13th of september and will continue till 15th.

The event will be celebrated in various parts of the island which will include Colombo, Kandy, Matara and etc, etc. Making sure the celebrations reach most of us. So Hope to see all the geeks back live in action soon in a place near you!. And Lonely Coder’s advanced wishes to Software Freedom Day. Happy SFD for all of you!!!.

Lonely Coder is most likely to join the celebrations on the final day at Crescat Boulevard. hope cya guys then.. As at the moment I have a friking fever with me. Everbody are welcomed by FOSS for this special event. Please be part of it and have fun.

WiMAX Last mile Internet Access…

Wimax is a wireless broadband technology which is to give the wireless industry a newer dimension. And it’s purpose is to ensure that the broadband wireless radios manufactured for customer use interoperate vendor to vendor.

WiMAX stands for Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. Also referred to as IEEE 802.16 which is it’s IEEE standard.

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802 committee,a standards body which sets networking standards such as Ethernet (802.3) and WiFi.

[IEEE(Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers): A standards body responsible for standardizing such wireless products, and etc.]

The primary advantages of Wimax standard are to enable the adoption of advanced radio features in a uniform fashion and reduce costs for all of the radios made by companies.

Wimax supports very robust throughput(Data Transfer Rate), the technology at practical terms can top out around 45mbps/channel (In some fixed broadband applications). And certain companies intends to start delivering service at 2mbps to 4mbps to their customers with mobile Wimax.

However the service across the channel would be shared by multiple customers means, Actual transmission capabilities on a per customer basis could vary widely depending on the carrier’s chosen customer base. Mobile Wimax capabilities on per customer basis will be lower in practical terms, but much more better than competing 3G technologies.

So called “fixed Wimax” also referred to as nomadic by some companies. Radios are already shipped by companies throughout the world. And mobile Wimax products are widely shipped precursor form already.

It appears that Wimax may eventually become primarily a mobile technology. Even in its present so called “fixed Wimax” version, the technology already offers some mobile capability. However, the standard for mobile Wimax IEEE 802.16e was finalized late in 2005.

It is understandable since WiMAX operates via Microwave in every chance it is going to use a high frequency (Possibly from 2.5 GHz to 5.8 Ghz) which in certain countries allocated only for military purposes, this would mean wimax will undergo a hardtime in those countries,(Rising a crunch situation in those countries,) One such country being US.

Any way when it comes to the safety factor of Wimax there is historical body of evidence supporting the safety of technologiesused in Wimax , though it is used in limited fashion today. Microwave and other spectrum technologies enjoy hundred years of historical evidence of safety Thus, first rush of vendors achieving initial certification for the products , Wimax actually has an operational history of safety.

WiMAX in Sri Lanka

Happily, for Srilankans Dialog Telekom already runs on the foe in Asia Pacific to deliver services. The company has already provided some of its clients at testing Phase. And many others seem to be interested in the technology. Lately Hemas had also made an inquiry from Dialog Telekom as well.

It is always regarded that Wimax is better over 3G. And when compared with already existing Hi-fi which is now widely available at airports, Hotels, Coffee Shops and etc.

“We live in a tiny world,
Which has more broader meanings to it.”