[Fsf-friends] incomplete (SMC) Swantantra Malayalam Computing

Sajith VK sajithvk@hotpop.com
Mon Feb 2 10:06:33 IST 2004

I dont know why such a mail which just critising the efforts of several
volunteers, who has contributed malayalam localisation efforts. I agree
that the project is not compleete in all ways, but has shown its power.
Was this mail, a reply to any other mail? 

The mail is filled up with negative comments....  Very sad to see such
meaningless mails.

> Well showing a few screenshots of how a Malayalam Gnu/Linux will look is
> really very  impressive for the layman.   But that is no  way to impress
> the guys  here with a solution  for a Malayalam  desktop. 
>  The Swatantra
> Malayalam Computing (SMC) hasnt achieved  anything by showing a few pics
> on a  malayalam destop  working on someone  elses computer.
Malayalam is the third most active Gnome L10N project in India and 38th
in the world
>  Its  easy to
> show some one  that 'I have created a malayalam gnome  by showing how it
> works on  my computer and  others who  need to see  this can come  to my
> house. Every One Is Invited.' Thanks but no.
Simply critising is the easiest job.....

> Its really  easy to show  the desktop icon  names using a  changed font,
> edit a  few files  so that  a few of  the easy  applications are  now in
> malayalam, rename the  menu items with the font and worst  of all show a
> web page that shows a malayalam  site in full screen. This could be done
> on any gnu system. 
Its was not really simple, when pango was not able to render malayalam 
and we dont have any "Swathantra" malayalam font....

> If this were  to be seen by people of other languages
> they would laugh at our face saying these malayalees are'nt even capable
> of creating  a locale of  their own,
Malayalam has the locale, which has support for all the functions, 
including malayalam sorting, malayalam month names, weekday names etc...

It seems this guy dont know what locale is, or he has never checked
files available from SMC
>  and  so doesnt have even  the basic
> qualification to stand among us in the hall of locales.
Malaylam is one of the most active L10n project in India.
Any idea why this persons says like this, without any

> As far as I know, if I  am right, the first meeting for the necessity of
> Indians to have a localized  operating system to suit their purposes was
> first held  at Trivandrum in around  1999. 
I dont know about this evernt, Sorry....
> The meeting  concluded with a
> descision to make  localized versions of desktops for  all the languages
> in India. And after this, it  was descided to form a group of developers
> in kerala to  do the specific task.  It was called SMC and  most of them
> were from Trivandrum. 
This is enterly wrong. SMC  is not a product of any such discussion.
SMC was first created in savanah by Biju M. Its Mr. Suresh Vp, who took
all effort to make smc to the current status. Now its in sarovar.

> They started their work on it,  and after 3 years
> these pictures and  a few files on  how to do this on  your computer, is
> what they have achieved.
See smc.sarovar.org to see what it does.
What else you expect? Be sopecific, suggestions are welcome.

> The SMC's developers were properly funded
Hmmmm? Who funded SMC? Tell based on facts...

>   and in the end we get to know
> that the work  they have done is  using a patented by some  one else and
> could lead to patent problems in  the future.They had taken pango as the
> rendering engine  and used a  code to support  indic module which  was a
> patented technology from IBM. Then how do we call it Swatantra Malayalam
> Computing. 'I am really proud of  you guys. You have done a really great
> work'. 
SMC is not the one who decides the "rendering engine". Pango is the
rendering engine for gnome. So inorder to localise Gnome, we need pango
to support our language. We have done the patch.
If pango is not a free software, the entire Gnome becomes non-free.
Does IBM has patent on pango? I dont know. 
One again, pango is the rendering engin of gnome.
> The SMC's GPL'ed otf fonts were made from rachana fonts
>  which was
> owned by  the rachana group  and also not  even in GPL. This  font could
> have later  on made drastic  impact on the  project if the  rachana team
> went to sue  them in the court.  But  its only a few days  back that the
> rachana came under the GPL.
No, we didnt used rachana font. For more detailes on font used
in SMC please contact Biju M.

> But I am happy that  their work could'nt materialize otherwise, it would
> have roused  too many  complications.  Every one  is free to  correct me
> where i went wrong.
> Thanks
> True Love  for freedom comes from  the love for source  code and through
> the understanding of humanity's desire to share.
> ----------</fwd>---------
> -- 
> Free Software Users Group - CUSAT
> http://fsug-cusat.port5.com/
"Freedom Matters"
Sajith VK

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