This posting might be slightly off the subject of this list. If so, I
apologise. I would like to ask for your advice.
Last year, I produced a shareware package of TrueType fonts and
macros for Word For Windows. The fonts contained all the characters
needed to do word-processing in all the European languages which use
the same alphabet as English ... or at least, all the characters that
I could learn about! The macros made it very easy to type all the
accented characters used in French, Czech, Turkish, Lithuanian etc.
The whole package is called LeedsBit, and is available at the
FTP.CICA.INDIANA.EDU archive and its mirror-sites, in the directory
called \WINWORD .
Please feel free to download this package and use it. Theoretically,
it is shareware, but payment is voluntary and the price is optional
anyway, so please feel free to use it for non-commercial purposes
I have just finished making another package called LeedsCyr, which
does the same job for Cyrillic languages such as Russian, Ukrainian
etc. I will be uploading that package to CICA shortly. Please feel
free to use that without charge also.
Now it is time to update LeedsBit, and to add extra characters that I
have been asked for by colleagues.
Since I am doing this work anyway, adding a few more special characters
needed to write African languages would not require much extra work.
Unfortunately, I know almost nothing about African languages, so I
would be very grateful for suggestions and advice from anyone who can
spare the time.
I must make clear that I am not talking about the symbols of the
International Phonetic Alphabet, which is already available in
several fonts. Nor am I dealing with languages which have entire
alphabets of their own, such as Amharic.
My fonts deal with the normal writing-systems of languages, e.g. in
French we need the same letters as English, plus an acute accent over
vowels, a cedilla under the C, an OE joined together etc.
I understand that many African languages use the basic English (i.e.
Latin) alphabet but also have special symbols of their own, e.g. Ewe
has a d with a hook underneath it, Shona has a similar hook on Z,
Yoruba has a vertical line under O, and Hausa seems to have
horizontal bars above and below several vowels. These are the kinds
of symbols which I could include in LeedsBit.
(These are only examples: I know that each of those languages also
uses several other symbols that I have not mentioned!)
I cannot offer to provide all the symbols for all the languages of
the continent, but I will try to provide those symbols which will be
of most use to members of this list.
If anyone is interested, please email me. Perhaps it would be better
not to answer to this list, so as to avoid boring our colleagues.
email: [log in to unmask]