NS 1142.10. 18 (Aug. 15, 2022)
I appreciate the Google Translate team very much for launching the Nepalbhasa project, the original language of Nepal. The translated words have reached over 300,000 recently. However, it is very sad that the Nepalbhasa translate project is going to hinder the future progress of Nepalbhasa because the project is using Indian Devanagara script to enter Nepalbhasa data on the project despite Nepalbhasa has its own script called Nepal-lipi.
Even Google has developed a Noto San Newa font, which is gaining its popular use online and social networks like Facebook. I wonder why Noto sans Newa font is not used in the project. I have tried using Noto San Newa font in the project, it perfectly works. But I suspect that those leading the project have their personal difficulties with Nepal-lipi literacy. I wonder whether some individuals’ literacy difficulty should hinder the future progress of larger section of Nepalbhasa speaker society who are eager to use Nepal-lipi to read and write their mother-tongue Nepalbhasa. It is a natural right. I believe that we should go forward with the use of Nepal-lipi script, not backward using the foreign script of Indian Devanagara over Nepal’s own Nepal-lipi script.
It is true that there was a long period of gap, where Nepalbhasa was published in Indian Devanagara script because we did not have printing facilities for printing books in Nepal-lipi script in the country. As a result, the majority had to use Indian Devanagara script whether one likes or not. However, it is now a history. With the progress of IT, those who were concerned have developed Nepal-lipi fonts since 2002 in Nepal and contributing to its progressive use. I believe that Google translate Nepalbhasa project can contribute not only to its translation project but also to revive once diminished use of Nepal-lipi script to a future that Nepalbhasa will be used with its own Nepal-lipi script by a wider society both in Nepal and abroad. Since 2007, websites such as Nepal Lipi Online (NLO), Hamro School have appeared in Nepal-lipi though they are still a small number.
This request is intended to bring Google’ s translate team and other informed people’s attention to correct the wrong use of Devanagara script to the use of Nepal-lipi script in entering Nepalbhasa data to its translate project. I trust that the Google Translate project is meant for the advantage of a larger number of Nepal-lipi literate Nepalbhasa users of the future, not for the hindrance it may enforce on Nepalbhasa. Let’s hope for the best.
(This is a copy of the request I made to the ‘Ask the community’ of Google Translate Help. – NLO Admin)