Group of volunteers engage public

At the Internet Exhibition at the CODISSIA grounds, a group of volunteers is actively engaging with the public. It wants to inform people how Tamil is being used on the Internet and how they can benefit and also contribute.

“Volunteers are teaching how to type in Tamil, how to use Tamil on mobile phones, projecting the Tamil content on the web, among others,” says A. Ravishankar at the stall.

“It is important to let the public know because when they understand that they can read Tamil content on the Web, they will avail an Internet connection.”

The group is also engaged in taking online encyclopaedia Wikipedia to the public. “Not many are aware that a free online encyclopaedia, that too in Tamil, is available,” says Mr. Ravishankar, an administrator at Tamil Wiki.

Being an administrator, he enjoys the privilege of monitoring content, editing them and deleting those that are radical, inflammatory and factually incorrect. He has been an administrator since 2005.

At present, Tamil Wiki has 15,000 members, including 250 active contributors. The credit for starting Tamil Wiki goes to Mayooranathan, a Sri Lankan Tamil working in the United Arab Emirates.

Another active member of the group of volunteers is R. Loganathan, who looks after the Tamil Wiktionary, an online Tamil-English dictionary. He says a team of volunteers has managed to upload 1.18 lakh Tamil words and provide meanings for the same. “We are growing and the Tamil Nadu government has volunteered to share its archives, glossary and other information it has,” he says.

Mr. Loganathan and Mr. Ravishankar say they want the Tamil people to realise the power of Web and use it to promote Tamil and add that their exhibition is a small effort in that direction.