Kannada crosswords go online

The website has been developed by a Bangalore-based techie

The crossword page on the Website developed by Rudresh  Shetty . DH PhotoA novel effort by a Bangalore-based techie has led to Kannada crosswords going online. Launched on Kannada Rajyotsava, earlier this year, the website has become popular on the internet among Kannada crossword lovers.

It has already received 11,000 page views in the last two months. The future plan includes setting crossword websites for various regional languages.

For Rudresh Shetty, who works for an IT company in Bangalore, developing the website — www.indicross.com — started as a hobby. Once Rudresh started working on developing the site, he realised that the already existing Kannada crosswords available online failed to allow users to interact with the crossword (or ‘Padabandha’).

Realising this, Rudresh developed a software which allows users to enter their choice of Kannada words directly onto the website using the existing keyboard and without the use of any additional softwares.

He used the transliteration tool provided by Google to translate each letter typed in English into its Kannada equivalent. For those stuck on a clue, a click on the empty box in the crossword reveals the letter. Then you can get back to cracking the crossword. Until now about 60 crosswords have been uploaded and Rudresh is trying to tie up with more newspapers so that their crosswords can be read online.

Rudresh said, “The advantage for the newspapers is that under each crossword the name of the publication with a link to their website would be displayed. This is a way of encouraging people to read newspapers and popularise Kannada.”

The next stage is to ask people to create crosswords and make them build it and share them with their friends. It is being tested as of now and would go live within two-three weeks, he added. Rudresh said he is in discussions with Kannada Sahitya Parishat, so that the software he has developed can be integrated with the rest of the Kannada blogs.

With development of a database of crosswords underway, the time isn’t far when people can choose crosswords from their favourite newspaper and start solving it online. “In future, we  hope that newspapers will give indicross.com their crosswords one day after it is published. Then a large number of people living across the world can use this website to solve their favourite crosswords,” he added.

‘Padabandha Brahma’ A N Prahlad Rao, PRO with the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board who holds a Guiness record in devising Kannada crosswords and provides crosswords to various newspapers, said developing such an online application would definitely be useful for readers spread across the world. “Until now it was available only in newspapers and magazines, but now even if you leave the country, you can get to solve Kannada crosswords online,” he added.

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