Romanized Singhala got great reception in Sri Lanka

Philippe Verdy verdy_p at
Sun Mar 16 00:36:41 CDT 2014

Don't you realize that what you are trying to create is completely out of
topic of Unicode, as it is simply another new 8-bit encoding similar to
what ISCII does for supporting multiple Indic scripts with a common
encoding/transcoding table?

The ISCII standard has shown its limitations, it cannot be enough to
support all scripts correctly and completely, it has lots of unsolved
ambiguities for tricky cases or historic orthographies, or newer
orthographies, that the UCS encoding better supports due to its larger
character set and more precise character properties and algorithms.

You are in fact creating a transcoding table... Except that you are mixing
the concepts; and the Unicode and ISO technical commitees working on the
UCS don"t need to handle new 8-bit encodings. And you'll soon experiment
the same problems as in ISCII and all other legacy 8-bit encodings: very
poor INTEROPERABILITY due to version tracking or complax contextual rules...

You may still want to promote it at some government or education
institution, in order to promote it as a national standard, except that
there's little change it will ever happen when all countries in ISO have
stopoed working on standardization of new 8-bit encodings (only a few ones
are maintained; but these are the most complex ones used in China and Japan.

Well in fact only Japan now seens to be actively updating its legacy JIS
standard; but only with the focus of converging it to use the UCS and solve
ambiguities or solve some technical problems (e.g. with emojis used by
mobile phone operators). Even China stopped updating its national standard
by publishing a final mapping table to/from the full UCS (including for
characters still not encoded in the UCS): this simplified the work because
only one standard needs to be maintained instead of 2.

Note that as long there will not be any national standard supporting your
proposed encodng, there is no chance that the font standards will adopt it.
You may still want to register your encoding in the IANA registry, but
you'll need to pass the RFC validation. And there are lots of technical
details missing in your proposal so that it can work for supporting it with
a standard mapping in fonts.

There is better chance for you to pomote it only as a transliteration
scheme, or as an input method for leyboard layout (both are also not in the
scope of the Unicode and ISO/ISC 10646 standards though, they could be in
the scope of the CLDR project, which is not by itself a standard but just a
repository of data, supported by a few standards)... Think about it.

2014-03-16 5:12 GMT+01:00 Naena Guru <naenaguru at>:

> I made a presentation demonstrating Dual-script Singhala at National
> Science Foundation of Sri Lanka. Most of the attendees were government
> employees and media representatives; a few private citizens came too.
> Dual-script Singhala means romanized Singhala that can be displayed either
> in the Latin script or in the Singhala script using an Orthographic Smart
> Font. It is easy to input (phonetically) using a keyboard layout slightly
> altered from QWERTY. The font uses Standard Ligature feature <liga> of
> OpenType / OpenFont standard to display glyphs of Sanskrit ligatures as
> well as many Singhala letters. The font is supported across all OSs:
> Windows, Macintosh, Linux, iOS and Android. Dual-script Singhala is the
> proper and complete solution on the computer for the Singhala script used
> to write Singhala, Sanskrit and Pali languages. The same solution can be
> applied for all Indic languages.
> The government ministries, media and people welcomed it with enthusiasm
> and relief that there is something practical for Singhala. The response in
> the country was singularly positive, except for the person that
> filibustered the Q&A session of the presentation that spoke about the hard
> work done on Unicode Sinhala, clearly outside the subject matter of the
> presentation.
> The result of the survey passed around was 100% as below (translated from
> Singhala):
>    1. I believe that Dual-script Singhala is convenient to me as it is
>    implemented similar to English - Yes
>    2. Today everyone uses Unicode Sinhala. It is easy and has no problems
>    - No
>    3. The cost of Unicode Sinhala should be eliminated by switching to
>    Dual-scrip Singhala - Yes
>    4. We should amend Pali text in the Tripitaka according to rulings of
>    SLS1134 - No
>    5. Digitizing old books is a very important thing - Yes
>    6. We should focus on making this easy-to-use Dual-script Singhala
>    method a standard - Yes
> Please comment or send questions.
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> Unicode at
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