Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Try Out My Online Hebrew Transliteration Program -- Now in Beta

My Online Hebrew transliteration program is finally in beta, which means I feel it has enough features and worse about well enough to invite people to check it out. You can play with it here.

From the "About" page on that website:

Version 1.0

This Hebrew transliteration program is created by Joshua Waxman. It is in beta, which means there are still some rough edges to it.

Transliteration Schemes
At the present moment, there are only three transliteration schemes supported. More will be added later. These three are:

  1. Academic Unicode
  2. Academic Font Friendly
  3. Ashkanazic
With the standard encoding settings, Firefox and Opera browsers can handle Academic Unicode, but Internet Explorer cannot. Therefore there is an Academic Font Friendly equivalent offered. Use this if you are using Internet Explorer, or perhaps if you are creating a web page for users who might be using Internet Explorer. In the drop down, besides Academic Unicode and Academic Font Friendly, there is also simply Academic. This will choose the best available version, depending on your browser.

There is also Ashkenazic. This is not my own personal way of transliterating Hebrew -- for example, I use "e" for sheva na rather than single quote -- but it seems a fairly common way.

Still to come:

More transliteration schemes. This is important for the different types of users of this program, as well as handling Google searches for Hebrew transliterated text better.

Also, handling tzeireis in a more natural way. At the present time, in my "Ashkenazic" transliteratikon, eileh and yisraeil both use "ei" to handle the short tzeirei. In actual informal use, a simple "e" would be used for "yisrael." This seems to be a difference between open and closed syllables, and one which does not accord with formal rules of standard dikduk (for eileh is also a closed syllable, with the gemination of lamed). I am in the process of writing a chunker to formally and informally separate syllables, and choose appropriate transliteration on that basis.


J. P. van de Giessen said...

Hi Josh,

In IE it works fine, but in Firefox I don't see the transliterate button

joshwaxman said...

in my firefox it works fine. could you email me the html source of the page not showing the transliterate button, so i could try to diagnose where the php code is going wrong?

J. P. van de Giessen said...

A copy of the code is in your Yahoo mailbox

yaak said...

Josh, awesome idea. I wish I'd thought of it first :)

I'll wait for the Israeli Hebrew scheme, which will probably be closer to the way I transliterate. (vavs as 'v's, kufs as 'k's, tavs as 't's).

Chajm said...

Right - it doesn't work with Firefox Version 1.0.7; but fine with IE... I also like the idea...

joshwaxman said...

thanks everyone!
I just tried validating the HTML here:

and discovered that it was not well-formatted. A few minor fixes (such as closing the selection tag) and it now works for me in Firefox 1.07.

try it again and let me know if it works for you.

thanks again.

Anonymous said...

It is frustrating when I read a study and it uses words that are not english, and asumes everyone understands them ( the words) like: "The previous shiur addressed the issue of heseiba which may not generate cherut." even a google search does not reveal the meaning of 'heseiba' or 'cherut'; just pages that use it.

Anonymous said...

hi josh, i hope you can help me or tell me what to do!
I'm not jewish and i have no idea of hebrew language. But i love a jewish man, and i would like to learn how to say some words and phrases in transliterated hebrew. For instance, how to say "i miss you", etc.

joshwaxman said...

send me an email.


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