|Punjabi – Gurmukhi ↔ Shahmukhi Machine Transliteration|
|Important:First Workshop on South and Southeast Asian Natrual Language Processing|
Punjabi is the mother tongue of more than 110 million people of Pakistan (66 million), India (44 million) and many millions in America, Canada and Europe. It has been written in two mutually incomprehensible scripts Shahmukhi and Gurmukhi for centuries. Punjabis from Pakistan are unable to comprehend Punjabi written in Gurmukhi and Punjabis from India are unable to comprehend Punjabi written in Shahmukhi. In contrast, they do not have any problem to understand the verbal expression of each other. Punjabi Machine Transliteration (PMT) system is an effort to bridge the written communication gap between the two scripts for the benefit of the millions of Punjabis around the globe.
Punjabi is the language of this vast area. The language has a rich literary past. The first known poet of Punjab (Baba Farid) was in 12th century but most of the luminaries are from past five hundred years. It is written in different scripts by different people and many varieties now stake claim of being an independent language, for example, Potohari, Pahari, Dogri, Hindko and Saraiki. The matter however remains undecided.
Pakistani Punjab's population according to 1998 census was 73.62 million. Projected population for 2005 is 84.85 million. 68.7 percent of these lives in villages with agriculture being the dominant source of livelihood. Following are the numbers of speakers of different languages in Pakistani Punjab.
Malik, M G Abbas. 2006. Punjabi Machine Transliteration. in proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Computational Linguistics and 44th Annual Meeting of the ACL, July 17 - 21, 2008, Manchester, UK. pdf
Malik, M G Abbas. 2005. Towards a Unicode Compatible Punjabi Characterset. in proceedings of the 27th Internationalization and Unicode Conference, April, Berlin, Germany. pdf
Rahman, Tariq. 2004. Language Policy and Localization in Pakistan: Proposal for a Paradigmatic Shift. Crossing the Digital Divide, SCALLA Conference on Computational Linguistics.
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