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Thomas Milo: Raising the Stakes in Arabic Text Handling

When: 
February 7, 2014
4:30p-6:30p
Where: 
Information Center Classroom, First Floor, Green Library East
Admission: 

The event is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. Please respond to Sonia Lee if you would like to attend.

Audience: 
General Public
Faculty/Staff
Students
Alumni/Friends
Sponsor: 
Stanford University Libraries
Contact:
sonialee@stanford.edu
736-9538

Join us for a fascinating talk by noted typographer Thomas Milo who will describe a project initiated by the Sultanate of Oman. The project aims to display, search and quote Qur'ān text on the web in a typographically stable and orthographically flawless manner, regardless the operating system or the type of web device. This requires rethinking computer typography. After a general description of the project, two areas will be discussed in more detail:

  • Scalable Vector Graphics technology will be evaluated as a candidate to stabilise computer typography. Browser deficiencies regarding SVG will be identified; SVG issues with Unicode will be identified.
  • Typography issues regarding Arabic orthography in general and Qur'ān in particular will be identified, particularly the amphibious letters, not handled by any software to date.
  • In addition to that a novel analysis of palaeographic Arabic script forms the basis for a new typeface to render the chapter headings.