Brief History

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Initially there was '' guestbook, for Malayalees world over to come together and discuss. Tony Thomas, who pioneered writing in Malayalam characters, used 'Kerala' font by clicking on Malayalam letters in ‘Charmap’ application. The year was 1996.

In the meantime, Binu Thomas Meledom, Binu Anand P.S, Konda Reddy Ankireddyapalli, and Soji Joseph coded an application called 'Lathi', which used Achayan transliteration scheme. The transliteration engine was written by Sreedhar Shenoy.

Parallelly, Cibu C.J developed a Unix command line application called ‘Varamozhi’, which transliterated from any transliteration scheme to any given Malayalam font. The name of the package, ‘Varamozhi’ was suggested by Vinod and the Logo was designed by Rajesh.

Soon, Binu Thomas Meledom, Binu Anand P.S. and Konda Reddy Ankireddyapalli created another application, 'Madhuri' using Cibu's Varamozhi transliteration engine. 'Madhuri' became very popular among the Kerala diaspora.

Cibu C.J created Varamozhi Editor application in June 2002, with Unicode and multi-font capabilities. Most of the 'Madhuri' users who also happened to be members of Varamozhi yahoogroup slowly changed over to the new Varamozhi Editor. {C}Varamozhi gradually made inroads into Malayalam Internet communities. In 2004 November, it achieved a greater pace when a fellow active participant 'Viswam' suggested using Mozhi, Varamozhi combination as the base of communication in Aksharaslokam group , a yahoo group led by Umesh Nair. The extreme requirement of accurate spellings in the group also turned out to be a critical test-bed for the fault-tolerance, reproducibility and accuracy of varamozhi editor and the built-in dictionary.

Later, 'Malayalam Wikipedia' and the blogger community followed the same path in their inspired movement of adapting to UNICODE Malayalam text. Most of the members and participants in the forums of chinta, the first independednt Unicode malayalam site, were also participated in this silent revolution. was another forum where varamozhi was being introduced by and among it's members.

In June 2005, Raj Nair created 'Mozhi Keyman' using Tavultesoft Keyman with inputs from Sunny Varghese who had earlier created a similar application, 'Vamozhi', with Tavultesoft Keyman. Mozhi Keyman became part of Varamozhi in July 2005.

Kevin who was a great admirer of ‘Rachana’application and its philosophy created ‘Anjali’, a Malayalam Unicode Font, out of 6 independent GPL’d font files from Rachana. Later, when the Rachana team decided to create their own Malayalam Unicode Font, they requested Kevin to discontinue creating Anjali using Rachana files. That prompted Kevin to create AnjaliOldLipi from scratch and it became part of the Varamozhi group in September of 2005. Since then, many Malayalam domains have provided interfaces for mozhi compatible user input on their sites.

In 2006, | Antony Deign, another malayalam blogger, created an online interactive lite version of the program. This was primarily aimed at those who can not install the core programs locally on their systems. Later in 2007, a more refined | javascript version was developed by Raj Nair which could be used both on-line and off-line. Shortly, the same script was incorporated into malayalam Wikipedia input pages.

As of late 2007, the major chunk of fresh Malayalam Unicode text on and off the net, (predominantly by the blogger and wikipedia community) is being produced using either Varamozhi Editor or Mozhi keyman or a combination of Varamozhi tools. It is also popularly used for applications such as electronic mailing and internet messaging. Those who are familiar with the scheme also makes use of the mangLIish input method - malayalam contend in English letters) for easy and unambigous text for mobile SMS and PDA-like non-malayalam environments.

== Links == [1] [2] [3] [4]


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