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Using Unicode with Myanmar

(Myanmar version မြန်မာလို - PDF)

Most current applications are unable to handle Myanmar Unicode, so this page describes how you can find those that do.

Typing in Myanmar Unicode (Input Methods)

Unlike the old Myanmar fonts, which just used English characters, you need a special “Input Method” to type in Myanmar Unicode. On Windows, you can use Keyman from Tavultesoft with a suitable keyboard to type Myanmar. A free version is available for home use. After installing Keyman, you need to install a Myanmar keyboard from ThanLwinSoft. Unzip the files and double click on myWin.kmx to install it. You can then type in Myanmar by clicking on the Keyman icon in the bottom right of your task bar and selecting the my-Win keyboard. When you type, Myanmar Unicode should appear in the current application if you have a suitable font selected. You can switch back to the normal keyboard using the Keyman icon again. On Linux, you can use the same keyboard using SCIM.

The Zip file of the layouts contains a PDF of the Keyboard layout, but it is similar to the Win Myanmar layout. The main difference is that stacked consonants are typed as if they were a normal consonant followed by the ` character. There is no need for multiple versions of medials and vowels for the different shape variatiants anymore — the Graphite software changes the shape automatically.

Using Myanmar Unicode for Word Processing

You may well be interested in copying some verses from MyanmarBible.com into your sermon notes. However, if you use Word, you will find that the text displays wrongly, even with the Padauk font. There is now a version of OpenOffice being developed, which supports Myanmar Unicode. There are now test versions available for Linux and Windows from scripts.sil.org.

Using Myanmar Unicode in other Applications

Currently there are very few other applications that support Myanmar Unicode directly. If you are using Linux, then a Graphite Pango module is available. Otherwise, you may need to convert the text to one of the old fonts to display in legacy applications.

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