[Localization] Arabic Projects
khaledhosny at eglug.org
Wed Jul 30 18:12:16 EDT 2008
On Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 01:09:35PM -0400, Nicholas Bodley wrote:
> On Wed Jul 30 11:44 , Khaled Hosny sent:
> >Arabic typewriters used what so called "Simplified Arabic script" where
> >each letter has only 2 forms (on used as isolated and final, and the
> >other as initial and medial) reducing the number of needed glyph while
> >remaining acceptably readable.
> Most interesting! Did the Shift key select the other form for a given letter?
> For such people as students of writing systems and typography, it would be good
> to have some images of typewritten Arabic on the Web.
Yes, shift used to select the isolated/final form, unfortunately I
couldn't find such samples on the web (I should removes the dust from my
father's typewriter and make some samples).
> >If by "mechanically" you mean metal type,
> I did.
> >then Arabic printing houses as early as 1800's produced very carefully typeset
> Arabic book that we yet to have a computer system that can imitate.
> That's just fascinating. I would not have thought it possible. I do hope that
> somebody has saved a few fonts of type from that period. One would think that
> there was quite a large number of different sorts (glyphs) in a given typeface.
> As well, one wonders whether the body of each piece was only a rectangle, or
> whether some more sophisticated scheme was worked out.
They used extensive sets of hundreds of glyphs with tens of contextual variants
of each glyphs.
Here are two scans from a Mushaf printed in 1924 using metal type, this
is one of the finest metal typesetted books.
(Note that Sura heads are calligraphed while the body of the page is
> I think these details would be of interest to subscribers to the Qalam mailing
> list on yahoogroups.com. That list (only sporadically active) is for people
> interested in writing systems, and sometimes branches out a bit into linguistics
> and typography.
> Perhaps I could forward your message to that list, with your permission (also
> with OLPC's permission).
Of course you can :)
Arabic localizer and member of Arabeyes.org team
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