Script Encoding Initiative
Department of Linguistics
University of California, Berkeley
Deborah Anderson wrote an article entitle “Supported Scripts” for the magazine “The Linguist” Issue 61/2 April-May 2022.
Thanks to support from the NEH grant, a new Unicode Technical Note #44 “Medieval Latin Character Recommendations” has been posted. The UTN is by David Perry. The NEH grant also supported the creation of a freely available Unicode-supported Old Italic font and keyboard, also by David Perry.
The project received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, so work will be able to continue for two more years. Grateful thanks for the ongoing support of NEH and other donors! Work earmarked for the coming year will include extensions to Egyptian Hieroglyphs and Maya hieroglyphs (the latter with support from a Google Research grant and the Unicode Adopt-a-Character program), as well as work on other historic and modern minority scripts.
In order to make progress on a Unicode proposal for Egyptian Hieroglyphs extensions, SEI organized a meeting of Egyptologists and script encoding experts at the University College London Centre for Digital Humanities from June 14–15, 2018.
The meeting report is posted here.
SEI assisted in organizing a second meeting on Mongolian script issues was held in San Jose, California, with funding from the Henry Luce Foundation and the Unicode Consortium.
A third meeting is planned for April or May 2019 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. The meeting report is available here.
Thanks to financial support from the Henry Luce Foundation
and the Unicode Consortium, SEI helped to organize a meeting in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia to address issues involving the representation of the Mongolian script.
The Mongolian meeting was preceded by meetings with users of two other scripts, Naxi Dongba and Shuishu (see photo below), which was attended by Deborah Anderson and others.
The August Unicode Technical Committee approved the Wancho script, a script used to write the Wancho language, which is spoken in eastern India, and parts of Bangladesh and India. Work on Wancho was supported by SEI. Link to proposal.
Unicode 10.0 was published, and three of the four new scripts in version 10.0 were supported by SEI:
• Masaram Gondi
• Zanabazar Square
All three were to the hard work of Anshuman Pandey.
The project received a Preservation and Access grant from NEH
for work in 2017–2018. The Universal Scripts Project, which is the NEH-funded portion of the project, was one of eight successful grants in the Preservation and Access Research and Development program. Link to an article.
The UTC discussed the Khitan Small Script proposal, Proto-Cuneiform, and Egyptian hieroglyphs.
In mid-November, Deborah Anderson travelled to Fresno, California, to meet with Cher Vang Kong, creator of the Nyiakeng Puachue Hmong, and to discuss getting the script into Unicode.
The August UTC approved proposals from SEI for three medieval punctuation characters.
With support from the Luce Foundation, SEI participated in a meeting in Yinchuan, China on the Khitan scripts.
The Unicode Consortium awarded SEI a grant to fund work on the Mayan script in 2017.
The May 2016 UTC approved the Medefaidrin script, which was used to write the Medefaidrin language, and a Kathi character, both of which were supported by SEI.
Deborah Anderson gave a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE) in Atlanta. The talk was entitled, “Hieroglyphs in Unicode: Progress Towards a Universal Computing Standard”.
At the late January 2016 meeting, the Unicode Technical Committee approved several SEI-supported characters, including additions to N'Ko, Latin, Soyombo, Zanabazar Square, and Devanagari.
Several script proposals which had SEI support were also discussed, including
• Pau Cin Hau Syllabary
• Old Sogdian
• and an extension to Egyptian Hieroglyphs.
The Unicode Technical Commitee met and discussed numerous Unicode proposals. The UTC approved
• Gunjala Gondi
• Indic Siyaq
Check out updates for other scripts on → Scripts Not Encoded
We are glad to present our new designed website by the German design studio Drei meiner Kollegen.
SEI organized a meeting in Tokyo with experts to discuss the Soyombo and Zanabazar Square script proposals. The meeting
was made possible through a grant from the Luce Foundation.
A summary of the meeting is available.
Deborah Anderson gave a short description of the encoding process in a video "Scripts and Character Encoding”, which is part of Overview of Internationalization and Unicode Projects webinar.
The Institute for Comparative Literature and Society at Columbia University hosted a panel “Unique, Unified, Universal: Excavating Unicode’s role in the Multilingual Digital Sphere,” which was co-sponsored by SEI. The panel included talks by Anshuman Pandey, Keith Murphy, Isabelle Zaugg and Anushah Hossain. Talk by Isabelle Zaugg was on SEI project. Link to recording of presentations.
Deborah Anderson gave a virtual talk at LocWorld46 Africa on “African Scripts on Computers and Devices: An Update”
Deborah Anderson and Anshuman Pandey gave two presentations at the Internationalization & Unicode Conference 45 in Santa Clara CA: “Historical Scripts and Innovations to Unicode Encoding Models” and “Negotiating Neographies in Unicode: Approaches to Encoding Newly-Invented Scripts”
At the 68th Rocky Mountain Council for Latin American Studies virtual conference, March 2021, Deborah Anderson gave a poster entitled: “Making Maya Hieroglyphs Accessible Online via Unicode (and the Script Encoding Initiative Project)”.
On September 3, 2020, Deborah Anderson gave a virtual talk on “The Script Encoding Initiative and Unicode”, as part of the Translation Commons series of talks for UNESCO educators.
Deborah Anderson took part in a one-day symposium “Alphabetica 2019”, held in conjunction with the “Missing Scripts” exhibit in the Den Haag, the Netherlands. The talk is available here.
Deborah Anderson and Anshuman Pandey gave a presentation entitled “Unencoded Scripts in the Unicode Standard: The 2019 Update” at the Internationalization and Unicode Conference in Santa Clara, CA.
At the Internationalization and Unicode Conference in Santa Clara, California (Sept. 10–12, 2018), Deborah Anderson will be
co-presenting with long-time SEI script proposal author Anshuman Pandey a talk entitled, “Undeciphered Scripts in the Unicode Age: Challenges for Encoding Early Writing Systems of the Near East.” (Dr. Pandey is also speaking on “Developing a Successful Proposal for Encoding a Script in Unicode.”)
The conference program is available here.
Carlos Pallán and Deborah Anderson co-presented the paper “Achieving Machine-Readable Mayan Text via Unicode” at the Digital Humanities conference in Mexico City (26–29 June). Deborah also gave a short paper “Bridging the divide: Supporting minority and historic scripts in fonts.”
Deborah Anderson gave a presentation as part of the public lecture series in Global Language Justice at Columbia University entitled “Preserving the World’s Languages and Cultures (through character encoding)” on February 15, 2018.
Deborah Anderson will gave a presentation as part of a panel at
the 41st Internationalization and Unicode Conference in Santa Clara. The panel was on handling variants in historic scripts, and
will also include presentations by Adam Anderson (Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Digital Humanities, UC Berkeley) and Kamal Mansour (Monotype).
At the Internationalization and Unicode Conference,
Deborah Anderson gave a talk on 2 November, 2016,
“Script Encoding, Part 2: Working with the User Community”.
Deborah Anderson gave a long paper presentation with Carlos Pallán Gayol (University of Bonn), entitled, “Unlocking the Mayan Script with Unicode” at the Digital Humanities 2016 conference in Kraków, Poland. The slides are available here.
SEI script proposal author Anshuman Pandey and Project Leader Debbie Anderson gave a talk entitled “From Local Script to Global Standard: The Lifecycle of a Script in Unicode” as part of the San Francisco Globalization Meetup. The presentation slides are available here.
The SEI Project Leader Deborah Anderson gave a joint paper at
the Digital Humanities conference in Sydney, Australia, with Stephen Morey, Centre for Research on Language Diversity, La Trobe University. The talk was entitled, “Negotiating the Issues
of Encoding and Producing Traditional Scripts on Computers – Working with Unicode”. The slides are available here.
SEI gave a panel presentation entitled "Character encoding in Unicode, transliteration, and the future of multilingual search" at the American Library Association meeting in San Francisco, California, which took place June 27 2015. (The ALA panel was entitled "Managing Transliteration of Bibliographic Data.")
SEI gave a presentation entitled "Expanding the Unicode Repertoire: Unencoded Scripts of Africa and Asia" at the 38th Internationalization and Unicode Conference in Santa Clara, California, which took place November 2014. The slides are available here.
Script Encoding Initiative
c/o Deborah Anderson
University of California, Berkeley
Department of Linguistics
1203 Dwinelle Hall #2650
Berkeley, CA 94720-2650
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