'Kanaja' now accessible for the blind too

'Kanaja' now accessible for the blind too

‘Kanaja’ has information of about nine lakh words in all branches of knowledge - agriculture, science, history, literature - and much more. ‘e-speak,’ a software which could be enabled at the click of the mouse reads the text on the portal. The facility has been titled “Hear Kanaja” (Kanajavannu keliri) on the website.

“We had thought of making the website accessible to visually-challenged when it was launched in 2009. The facility has been introduced during the recent revamp and was launched on Ugadi (April 4),” Knowledge Commission member-secretary M K Sridhar told Deccan Herald.

Sridhar said ‘e-speak’ should be installed in the user’s computer to avail the facility. The software is compatible with Windows and Linux operating systems. A visually-challenged software engineer of Soraba in Shimoga district, Sridhar, helped modify the software to pronounce Kannada words. Bangalore-based International Institute of Information Technology has been providing the technical know-how for ‘Kanaja’, informed project coordinator Beluru Sudarshan.

More information

The member-secretary said that Karnataka State Science Council, Hampi Kannada University and several other institutions have consented to share their information with the Knowledge Commission.

The portal will be developed in collaboration with users (inviting articles from users and publishing them on the portal after scrutiny from experts) on the lines of the hugely popular wikipedia. With this the information on the website would swell to 18 lakh words.

“It has also been planned to digitise a few Kannada books with prior permission from the authors and put them on the portal. The Commission has been contemplating providing information in Tulu, Konkani and other Kannada dialects,” Sridhar said.

Engish-Kannada dictionary of Prof G Venkatasubbaiah, the renowned lexicographer is already available on the portal. A technical dictionary explaining meanings of the words related to specialised areas will also be added , he said.

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