Some good free resources for online and offline transliteration.
1. Pramukh Type Pad - Online and Offline Resources.
Pramukh Type Pad is an online Transliteration tool. Since it opens up in a web browser, it does not require any software. Just type in your Indic Language and Copy Paste in any Word Processor like MS Word. It supports 9 Indic Languages
Bengali | Devnagari | Gujarati | Gurumukhi | Kannada | Malayalam | Oriya | Tamil | Telugu
An offline version of Pramukh Type Pad can also be downloaded.
If the link is not visible, click on the 'Show/Hide Info'. Please check the screenshot.
2. Pramukh IME (Size: 522 KB)
This is a new application developed by Vishal Monpapra. The advantage of the application is that the characters are encoded on-the-fly. There is no need to install this application. Just double click on the exe file and the program will start running. The Help file given is very good and solves most Transliteration problems. For more details, Sujal has given a better reply in Aksharmala Discussion Group, where he has given a link to Google Help and 2 pdf files created from Pramukh IME's help file titled 'common problem solution'
Please find the developer's Description
Using this software you can write in 9 Indian language in Microsoft Word, Notepad, IE, Firefox in short in all applications. Once you download it, unzip the folder and double click on "PramukhIME.exe". This program will create system tray icon immediately. Choose your script from the menu that pops up when you click on system tray icon and enjoy typing everywhere in your computer. Press F12(or your preferred shortcut key) to quickly toggle between English and Indian script. This program works with Windows 2000, Windows XP, Vista on 32 bit as well as 64 bit platform. It does not install itself so it works easily even with "guest" account.
There are many more resources on this page like Firefox addon, Wordpress Plugin, etc. This page is worth having a look.
3. Google IME
Google IME needs to installed in the OS. For each language, there is a separate Installer. This is a drawback. It also gives spelling suggestions. Google IME does not convert into Unicode on the fly i.e. real time, but the characters are encoded after the completion of the word. This is another drawback, which is not the case of Pramukh IME and Pramukh Type Pad. After installing, it displays an option on the language bar. The language of choice can be selected from the drop down. Screenshots, overview, install / uninstall instructions, configuration and help topics can be found on Google IME Help page
Description by Developer
Google Input Method: Type anywhere in your language
Google Transliteration IME is an input method editor which allows users to enter text in one of the supported languages using a roman keyboard. Users can type a word the way it sounds using Latin characters and Google Transliteration IME will convert the word to its native script. Note that this is not the same as translation -- it is the sound of the words that is converted from one alphabet to the other, not their meaning. Converted content will always be in Unicode.
Google Transliteration IME is currently available for 19 different languages - Amharic, Arabic, Bengali, Farsi (Persian), Greek, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Nepali, Punjabi, Russian, Sanskrit, Serbian, Tamil, Telugu, Tigrinya and Urdu.
Aksharmala is another installable Indic Transliteration application. It converts the characters on-the-fly (default setting) or after the completion of a word (after pressing space bar). The default language installed is hindi. For another languages, you will need to install keymaps. Aksharmala is a bit flexible then others in a way that it supports flexible input schemes, and is not rigid as that of other transliteration tools.
e.g. typing hii and hI will result in ??
But it is always better to practice typing in the way all transliteration tools support.
Asharamala 2007 is a open-source windows application that allows easy input of Indian language text. It currently supports Hindi, Sanskrit, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Gujarathi, Gurumukhi, Bengali, Assamese and Urdu. Read Introduction to Aksharamala to find more detailed information about how it allows direct input of Indian language text into popular windows desktop applications (such as Microsoft Word, Outlook, Frontpage, Open Office) and web applications (such as, gmail, yahoo mail, hotmail). Once you had a chance to try out the product (use the link below to download) don't forget to come back and give your feedback.
Creator of Aksharamala
For more details about aksharmala, please read What is Aksharmala?
Since I did not find any installation instruction with screenshots, I tried to do it on my own.
When you run aksharmala, a program icon will be displayed in the system tray.
Right click on it and select the language.
To add install another language, we need to add a sitemap. Right click on the icon and click options.
Click on Tab Keymap Maintenance
Select the Keymap (language) of your choice and click open.
Message box indicating that keymap successfully is installed will be displayed indicating the completion of keymap.
Shortcut to enable / disable Aksharmala.
Aksharmala can be enabled / disabled by a default short cut key Crtl + Shift + T. This key can be changed by going into options -> Aksharmala Properties Tab.
Changing default language in Aksharmala
Options -> Aksharmala Properties.
Transliteration Using Multiple Languages
In options menu, click the tab 'Transliteration Using Multiple Keymaps'. Check the box titled 'Enable Multiple Keymap Transliteration'. This form will give you option to add shortcuts to enable languages of your choices.
Change the settings as per your choices.
5. Some more resources
The home page shows many Indic Resource.
6. Online Resources
1. See only Square boxes instead of typed fonts.
Install files for complex script and right to left languages (including Thai)
a. Enable Indian Language - pdf (from Pramukh IME Help files)
2. Font Problem.
a. Facing Problem - pdf (from Pramukh IME help files)
Help for typing
a. View online and Download iTrans Encoding
Convert Non- unicode font to a unicode font
Gujarati Font converter
Converts many gujarati non-unicode fonts to unicode fonts.
Converts Non-unicode fonts into unicode supports multiple languages. Supports Hindi, Tamil, Gujarati, Punjabi, Bengali, Kannada, Telugu, Marathi, Malayalam.
Script Converter is a Google Labs product that allows the user to read a web page in a script of their choice. For example if the user can understand spoken Tamil but cannot read the script, they will be able to view Tamil web pages in English (Roman) script. We do not translate any content - we transform the words on the page to its phonetic equivalent in the desired script. We also support the conversion from non-Unicode encodings to Unicode, so that users can view pages without installing the custom font otherwise needed. Users will still need Unicode fonts. To start browsing a website, type the url in the text area, choose your preferred script and press convert.
Many Stotras / Bhajans, etc are written in English, but are sung in Hindi. They read Hindi but are typed in English (code - mixing).
Jai Hanuman gyan gun sagar,
jai Kapisa tihun lok ujagar,
Ramdut atulit bal dhama,
Ahjaniputra Pavansut nama,
gets converted into (Hindi)
Eventhough many times, transliteration is not accurate, it is helpful and saves time. It is not accurate, as it is converted based on the rules of unicode typing.
This Tool is very useful to all those who type Bhajans sung in Indic Languages.