Shantanu's Blog

Database Consultant

October 24, 2004


Useful Tips

You should be able to browse the BBC hindi site.

If you can't see hindi text follow these steps...

If you are using windows 2000 or XP
If you have Windows 2000 or a more modern version of Windows, the support for Unicode is built in. If you can not see the BBC hindi site, you should go to Start > Settings > Control Panel > Regional Options. In the General tab, set all the languages you may want to display. Scroll through the bottom Window and look for Indic. At this point, you will be prompted to insert Windows 2000 CD. Upon insertion of the CD in your CD drive, Indian language fonts for Unicode will be installed in your desktop. The Arial Unicode MS font works well with BBC site.

If you are using Windows 98 or 95
Upgrade to Windows 2000 or XP
Download and install the latest Mozilla browser, firefox from


Online devnagari editor

IIT site to convert english to Unicode.

Site maintained by Avinash Chopde.

Vowels (dependent and independent):
a aa / A i ii / I u uu / U
e ai o au aM aH
RRi / R^i RRI / R^I LLi / L^i LLI / L^I

k kh g gh ~N
ch Ch j jh ~n
T Th D Dh N
t th d dh n
p ph b bh m
y r l v / w
sh Sh s h L
x / kSh GY / j~n / dny shr
R (for marathi half-RA)
L / ld (marathi LLA)
Y (bengali)

Consonants with a nukta (dot) under them (mainly for Urdu devanagari):
k with a dot: q
kh with a dot: K
g with a dot: G
j with a dot: z / J
p with a dot: f
D with a dot: .D
Dh with a dot: .Dh

Anusvara: .n / M / .m (dot on top of previous consonant/vowel)
Avagraha: .a (`S' like symbol basically to replace a after o)
Ardhachandra: .c (for vowel sound as in english words `cat' or `talk')
Chandra-Bindu: .N (chandra-bindu on top of previous letter)
Halant: .h (to get half-form of the consonant - no vowel - virama)
Visarga: H (visarga - looks like a colon character)
Om: OM, AUM (Om symbol)

October 23, 2004



Have you visited website?
It's a nice experience to type comments and add articles in marathi with ease!
I know you must be reading and other marathi newspaper sites. But this site allows you to add your own thoughts. Even if you are not interested in Indian Languages in general (and Marathi in particular!) Just test it for the sake of learning where Unicode will take indian languages in the future.


Baraha: Best Indian Language editor

Significance of Indian languages editor:
Baraha can be used as an independent editor that provides basic options for editing documents. Baraha Direct allows users to type Indian languages directly into Microsoft Office products such as Microsoft Word for creating professionally looking documents.

Baraha is a word processing application for creating documents in Indian languages. Baraha is developed with an intention to provide a free software to enable Indians use their native languages on the computers. Baraha can be effectively used for creating documents, sending emails and publishing web pages.

Baraha - which means 'writing' in Kannada, is an Indian language software that converts 'Indian language text written in English' to the respective scripts. The first version of Baraha was released in 1998, with an objective to provide free, easy to use Kannada software, to enable even non-computer experts, to use Kannada in computers.

Later, the Devanagari script was introduced, thereby enabling Hindi, Marathi & Sanskrit users. Today, hundreds of thousands of individuals and organisations around the world are successfully using Baraha for publications, sending emails and creating websites.

About the author:
Sheshadri Vasu, the pioneer of the Baraha software, is a self-made success story. While most people working abroad spent weekends either working over time at office or planning weekend trips, Vasu worked at developing the Kannada software.
Thanks to his diligent efforts, Baraha is today popular not only in Karnataka but also in 50 other countries including the USA, England, Kenya, Gulf countries, Singapore, Germany and several others. And in his own words, over 2,000 new people download Baraha everyday.
Vasu, a Bangalorean employed at ‘First Data Company’, New York, is an Electronics Engineering student and has a Masters degree in Electronics from Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore.

About the software:

Why Baraha?
The latest version Baraha supports saving the documents in UNICODE format which means you can transfer documents to other operating systems that support UNICODE, such as Linux.

Baraha 6.0 takes Unicode support to the next level and works seamlessly in the Unicode based operating systems. Data can be copied in Unicode format between Baraha and other Unicode enabled applications by a few clicks of mouse.
So, Baraha is not just an ANSI based editor. It is also the easiest way to create Unicode documents in Indian languages. Several Unicode projects have been successfully completed using Baraha.
Baraha users are progressively increasing every day. Baraha website statistics indicate that in the month of July 2004 alone, Baraha 5.0 was downloaded about 3200 times.

In Windows XP and Windows 2000, you should first enable the Indian languages support before you can use Indian language UNICODE. You can enable the Indian language support using Control Panel --> Regional Options applet.

So users don’t be agonized! Your work in Baraha will never become obsolete.


One more Unicode editor

Version: V1.4
Release Date: 24.06.1997
On any suggestions, comments, questions please contact:
Volker Schuermann (E-Mail:
The printing feature has been worked over and now offers a window with a couple of options to select. Mostly HP DeskJet stuff.

With ALT-W JAADOO makes use of KYAA's (the ITRANS editor) Hindi/English/German dictionary (included in this package) and looks up the meaning of the Hindi word currently marked by the cursor. It's experimental only at the moment, so don't expect much!

With ALT-T or CTRL-T an entire line can be toggled from normal to bold style and back.
This effect is also printed while in Devanagari mode and displayed in the PCX graphics file.
In the ITRANS file, there are two lines at the bottom, preceded by an "% Attrib" tag, containing
the style information.

October 20, 2004


Type in Hindi unicode

Takhti allows you to enter Hindi text (Devanagri Unicode) on Windows systems.
It was written mainly to ease typing in Hindi in XP but then it was realized that most people in India use Win9X.


IE 5 or above
Richedit 3.0 or above

Program will not continue without these system components


-program starts in Hindi mode - to toggle to ascci, use Cntrl Q .
-conjuncts ("half -characters") based on halant (x) .
to type the word hindi, type hinxdI .
-To send mail in hindi, send message encoding to
UTF-8. Then copy paste message from takhti to Outlook express.
This is now directly implemented within Takthi.
- receiving party must have a unicode compatible Devanagri font.
-you can save, print etc
-to see keyboard layout, Options->Show keyboard.
-ksha -> type kxQ
-gya -> type jxM
-shra -> type Sxr

October 19, 2004


Add Images to Excel Projects

Images as Chart Bars
You can replace bars, columns, or areas on most standard or 3-D charts with images. To try this, click on a series on a chart or select a single bar or column. Right-click and choose Format Data Series (or Format Data Point) and add an image by choosing the Patterns tab and Fill Effects | Picture | Select Picture. Once you've selected a picture, click on Insert and set the option for image scaling. The best options are Stack or Stack and Scale to. If you use the latter option, set the number of units that equal one image. Repeat for all the series or bars as desired. Don't worry if your picture looks "squished" in the Format Data Series pane, it will show up correctly in the chart.
There is a shortcut to the process that lets you use a clip-art image rather than an image from a file. Select the data series or data point and choose Insert | Picture | Clip Art. Once you've added the image, use the Fill Effects | Picture tab dialog to scale the clip-art image as you would if you had used an image from a file.
You may find that the typical width of a bar in a chart is smaller than desirable for the image you use. To alter this, right-click on a series, choose Format Data Series | Options. Decrease the Gap Width to make the bars wider and if desired, add an overlap to widen the bars or columns even more.

Images as Chart Backgrounds
You can also add an image behind your chart, placing it either behind the (larger) chart area or the plot area, which is the area covered by the bars or columns but doesn't include the surrounding chart elements. With the chart open on your screen, click on either of the areas. (If you're unsure what you have selected, read the name of the selection from the Name box on the Formula bar.)
Right-click on your selection and choose Format Chart Area (or Format Plot Area) and then the Patterns | Fill Effects | Picture. Click on Select Picture, locate the image file to use, click on Insert, and then on OK twice. When you add an image to the chart area, you may need to remove the fill from the plot area so you can see the image. To do this, right-click on the plot area, choose Format Plot Area | Patterns and set Area to None.
The bars, columns, data markers, and chart and plot areas aren't the only chart elements that you can replace with images. You can also add images to the floors and walls of 3-D charts as well as to the legend area of charts. Try right-clicking on a chart element and selecting Format and then see whether the Fill Effects button lets you access the Picture tab. If this fails, however, don't give up. Instead, copy a picture to the Clipboard, select the element to replace, and choose Edit | Paste. One of the options will work for most of the elements in your charts.
To use the same image in different forms, as in data markers or legend icons, open your image in your graphics software and recolor or resize it for use in your chart. With judicious coloring, one image can be used multiple times on one chart.

Take a Picture
You can also save a chart as an image file so you can, for example, add it to a Web page. Although you can do this programmatically, a simple solution is to save the worksheet as a Web page using File | Save As. When you do this, the chart is saved as a separate GIF file, which you can then use as you would any image file.

pcmag article


Corporate Fear

Scobleizer Blog
Fear of being different. Fear of telling your boss your ideas. Fear of speaking up in meetings. Fear of going up to someone you don't know and introducing yourself. Fear of doing something that might destroy your career.
Fear of weblogging.
It's time we get over our fears.
I meet a lot of people around the industry. Almost everytime I meet someone, I ask them "do you have a weblog?" That's my way of saying "I like you and want to hear more of your ideas." Even deeper: I want a permanent relationship with you.
I've asked this question of people at Apple. Google. IBM. eBay. Real Networks. Cisco. Intel. HP. Amazon. And Microsoft.
Too often the answer is "I couldn't do that."
"Why not?" I ask.
"Because I might get fired," is often the answer. I hate that answer. It's an example of corporate fear. An artifact of a management system that doesn't empower its employees to act on behalf of customers.

I find this fear disturbing. Imagine being a flight attendant with this kind of fear. "Sorry, I can't talk to the passengers in this plane today cause I might get fired."

The time it takes for an idea to be hatched, found by Slashdot, and then reported in the mainstream media, is now about five weeks. Next time around it will be even faster. Why? The word-of-mouth networks are becoming more efficient.
Today there's 4,305,245 weblogs, as reported by Technorati.
Yeah, maybe only 55% of those are actually being published to (Dave Sifry, founder of Technorati says). But look at that growth curve. The blogosphere is eight times as large today as it was in June 2003! If those trends don't get your attention, nothing will. Go back to sleep.

"OK, what are the reasons I should let my employees blog?"
Here's my observations:
1) People don't trust corporations. Especially big and successful ones like, um, Microsoft. Come on, be honest, none of you really trust us to do the right thing, do you? So, how do we show you that we're trustworthy? We need to invite you deep inside our corporate structures and talk to you like human beings.

2) People don't like talking to corporations. Again, be honest, if you saw a press release from a big company asking for you to provide feedback on something, would you? Hey, Microsoft has had "" for a long time. Even when I was a customer of Microsoft's, I'd never send anything to that address. Why? I never thought anyone was listening.

3) Which is more believeable? A press release from, say, Ford Motor Company, or a few blog entries from the people who designed the new Ford Mustang's powertrain.

4) Blogs build market momentum and get adoption. Ask Buzz Bruggeman, CEO of ActiveWords, about this one. He's gotten world-class reviews in the newspapers you all love and know (just a week or so ago ActiveWords was in the New York Times). But he gets more downloads of his product when I linked to him than when a famous "USA" newspaper wrote a glowing review. They have millions of readers. What am I missing here? Yet I've had product managers for products that make billions every year tell me that they'll just advertise in national newspapers and get the same "kick" that blogs will get them. (They look at my puny 4,000 readers per day and laugh. Keep laughing, but do your homework and ask Buzz about his experiences -- he's not the only one who's noticed this. Ask Nokia (or, even the marketers at Microsoft) about how important a good link on Engadget is).

October 17, 2004


Google helps to search for files on your Desktop

Now google can help you to find those word and excel files you are looking for.

Google has released a new Google Desktop Search tool that allows people to scan their computers for information in the same way they use Google to search the web.

You can...
# Find your email, files, web history and chats instantly
# View web pages you've seen, even when you're not online
# Search as easily as you do on Google

Google Desktop Search finds:
Msoffice files
Outlook / Outlook Express
Internet Explorer History
Text files

Please note....
It will take about 1 minute to download (400K) but will take a few hours later to index all files on your PC. So install the software when you have enough time.
It requires Windows XP or Windows 2000 SP 3+

Overall it is highly recommended add-on.


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