Package enables any native user of Malayalam to use the software without training It features a complete Malayalam interface and an integrated Malayalam spell-check facility

The computer has just gone vernacular. Employees in Government offices and private companies can now compose letters, send e-mail messages and prepare reports in Malayalam.

The computational linguistics team at the Centre for Development of Imaging Technology (C-DIT) here has developed an Open Office software package that would enable users to perform almost all routine office functions in the native language.

Named Kaveri, the package is the second product of Mission Malayalam, a five-year research and development programme for Malayalam language computing. The first product, Nila, was deployed in November 2004.

The Official Languages Department, the State IT Mission and the Department of Linguistics, University of Kerala, collaborated with the project.

Featuring a complete Malayalam interface and integrated Malayalam spell check facility; Kaveri is a modified, customised and localised version of Open Office.org. The flexible software works in both Linux and Windows operating systems.

Kaveri also features an English-Malayalam translation assistant, a multi-lingual keyboard, English- Malayalam administrative glossary, office content management, Indic language transliteration and intelligent assistant for repair and live updating.

According to C-DIT, the modified Open Office package enables any native user of Malayalam to use the software without training or difficulty. It supports four other Indian languages, namely, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Hindi.

Kaveri has two keyboard layouts the inscript mode and phonetic keyboard.

The phonetic keyboard was designed and developed by the CliCK team. A document prepared in Kaveri can be converted to Adobe PDF or Microsoft Word format.

The automatic spell check facility is integrated into the software. The system underlines badly spelt words and gives suggestions.

The translation assistant is also an integrated system that can perform word-by-word translation from English to Malayalam. The built-in content management system is designed to make life easier for the office secretary. The user can save a document as office copy. There are facilities to include details like subject, data, details of sender and recipient and so on.

The administrative glossary system was developed with the purpose of finding apt terms in the official language to be used in notes and reports. The Indic language transliteration facilitates conversion of documents in Malayalam to other language scripts like Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Hindi.

CDs of the Kaveri software will be available at a nominal rate from C-DIT. Kaveri can also be downloaded from www.clickeralam.org, free of cost.

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