This page will outline the necessary to get started on translating GNOME to Tamil.

Step 1: Tamil Computing

The first step is to enable your computer to speak Tamil. Follow the procedure below depending on the Operating System you are using:

Download the Murasu Anjal kit and install it on your PC. Run Murasu Anjal. This will install several fonts and keyboard layouts. You can set this up as you wish. You can choose any keyboard configuration that you like and learn to use it. Nevermind if you can type only one word per minute. I find the Romanazied (Anjal) keyboard easy to learn on. Make sure you set the font encoding to TSCII 1.6. This is very important as this is the standard we will be using for the translation.

Linux users can use the Akaram Editor. This is a Tcl/Tk based application that should run on any computer (including Windows) that has the Tcl/Tk interpreter installed. Once you unzip the package simply type 'wish akaram.tcl'. This should launch the editor. Make sure you have the font encoding set to TSCII (this is the default and the only one supported).

Step 2: Download Translation Files

The next step is to download the files to be translated. For your convinience, there is a local copy of all the files in a tar ball (*.tar.gz). Download this file and unzip it into a directory. Now you have most of the *.po files for translation. You may also want to download a copy of the dictionary that was developed by Anna University for Computing terms.

Step 3: Translation

a. Send me an email on which file you would like to translate. There are come core files that need to be translated before other to get it included in the next distribution.

b. Open the .po file in your favorite editor. You should see something like the following:

#: applets/desk-guide/deskguide_applet.c:77
msgid "Layout"
msgstr ""
Now replace the Tamil work for 'Layout' in the msgstr line. Remember to place the Tamil word between the double quotes. You must also keep in mind that any control characters such as %1 and \n must be maintained in the Tamil work also. For e.g.
#: applets/fish/fish.c:340 applets/fish/fish.c:671
#, no-c-format
msgid "%s the Fish"
msgstr ""
the %s must be placed in the msgstr line also.

Step 4: Submission

Send the translated file to me so that I can check it off as completed and pass it along for inclusion.