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Posts Tagged ‘writing’

Keyboard overlay stickers improve foreign character writing support in the LRC

2011/06/17 1 comment

Some non-western, but character-based languages benefit from having keyboard overlay stickers installed. Here is a list of what the LRC has:

Amount Languages installed@
3 Arabic 1 list. station, 2 rightmost computers in the front row of the left (teacher perspective) half of the main classroom
2 Farsi 2 rightmost computers in the middle row of the left (teacher perspective) half of the main classroom
1 Greek 1 list. station
3 Russian 1 list. station, 2 rightmost computers of the rear row of the left (teacher perspective) half of the main classroom

Here are photos of the Arabic and Cyrillic keyboards:

lrc-arabic-keyboardslrc-russian-cyrillic-keyboards

We installed the stickers, so that they reflect the software layout of the keyboard that you get when choosing the respective language from the international toolbar. Note that the letters marked in red on the Cyrillic keyboard picture below are not supported by the Russian keyboard layout:

 russian-keyboard-stickers-ukrainian

Since only one set can be added to any existing physical keyboard, the teacher computer keyboard can not have an overlay. The student computers with overlays are the listening stations and computers 6,7,12,13,18,19 on the LRC layout map.

Remember that the On-screen-keyboard software remains accessible at all PC’s through clicking “Start”, “Run”, typing “OSK”, clicking "OK".

Example where you can get your own keyboard overlay stickers

MS-Maren Morph helps reading Arabic web pages

This new IE accelerator tool from MS-Innovation Lab Cairo which provides morphological analysis, translations, derivatives, inflections, and more, is available for Internet Explorer 8 and higher from the Maren Morph homepage, or on the LRC PCs.

arabic-maren-morphological-analyzer

Recommend also checking out the other MS-Afkar tools, which are primarily designed for facilitating computer use of Arabic native speakers, but of considerable use also for learners of Arabic: 

Arabic character input tools in the LRC: MS-Maren and Fontboard-Arabic

2011/06/09 1 comment

“Lack of access to an Arabic keyboard or lack of familiarity with one are two of the most common problems preventing Arabic users from communicating in their own language. Microsoft Maren is a Windows extension that comes to the rescue, allowing you to type Arabic in Roman characters (Romanized Arabic, Arabizi, Arabish or Franco-Arabic) and have it converted on the fly to Arabic script. Maren integrates seamlessly with Windows and works in most Windows applications and websites.”. “Maren Transliteration enables the use of an English keyboard to spell out text in what is called ‘romanized’ Arabic. Maren Transliteration then shows the user options in Arabic script.”

The fontboard “Arabic keyboard created by Zsigri Gyula more closely resembles the sounds and shapes of the US English QWERTY keyboard.It is extremely helpful if you do not type in Arabic on a regular basis, and it is without a doubt more intuitive than the Arabic keyboards Microsoft provides.”

These tools can be downloaded from the links and are, if you use the LRC, accessible from the desktop: arabic-maren-fontboard

Foreign Language Character Input on Windows XP in the LRC

2011/04/14 1 comment

The LRC offers the following foreign language characters writing support:

American English us international not needed us-int
Arabic Google;MS;MS-maren;fontboard maybe later, now osk demo
British English us international not needed us-int
Dutch us international not needed us-int
Farsi Google;MS maybe later, now osk demo
French us international not needed us-int
German us international not needed us-int
Greek Google;MS maybe later, now osk demo
Italian us international not needed us-int
Japanese MS not needed
Korean MS maybe later, now osk demo
Mandarin MS;pinyinput not needed pinyin
Portuguese (Brazilian) us international not needed us-int
Russian Google;MS maybe later, now osk demo
Spanish us international not needed us-int

The support is best accessed from the “international toolbar”, like so: lrc-international-keyboards-cropped

You can also use the windows on-screen keyboard to input non-Western characters on a computer that has not the corresponding keyboard overlay stickers. In the small-group workspaces, which have writing pads, you can also use the MS-Handwriting IME for East-Asian languages.