Sunday, November 30, 2008

Blog It in Hindi

When Amitabh Bachchan decided to write his blog in Hindi, it evoked mixed reactions everywhere; but not many know that Hindi blogging in recent times has reached such a height that it really doesn't need big names to endorse it.. In FACT there are many Hindi blogs which boast of lots of clicks everyday – many a time, more than a hundred readers feel that they should comment on the post in the blog. So, Hindi blogosphere already boasts of many Amitabh Bachchans. Let’s see how.

When a new technology arrives, everyone feels inclined to exploit it, if it offers exploitable features. Using one’s own language is one such exploitable feature. Soon after the Internet started gaining popularity, there were people willing to see their language put to use on the Internet. Hindi lovers were one of them and soon we saw the emergence of Hindi websites on the Internet. This we may call as the first phase. Hindi-writing and Hindi-reading was not so easy in the first phase as most documents were either scanned or typed using primitive Hindi fonts. Hindi-typing was tough and scanning was not an easy task. What people wanted was using Hindi at their convenience.

Then, along came the era of transliteration. In transliteration, one script was transformed into another - like you wrote Hindi words in the Roman script and then transliterated it into the Devanagari script. The software which used such tools could be downloaded free of cost. This needed the relevant software to read such write-ups. If you installed the relevant software in your computer, you might read; if not, you might watch a lot of squares on your computer screen. The software needed a particular combination of key-strokes for each and every Devanagari character that one needed to remember – quite a tough task obviously.

Something which changed the status of Hindi usage on the Internet was the arrival of Unicode fonts (such as UTF 7) with transliteration capability. Here you write Hindi in the Roman script on your computer screen and it will be transliterated into Devanagari. If you feel the word is not correct, you have options to choose from. Using this is something close to perfection and the Hindi in Devanagari script is clear and clean. Moreover, this form of Hindi is supported by the main search engines and operating systems like Windows XP and Vista. Websites like quillpad.com and tools like Google Indic Transliteration tools make Hindi writing so easy that everyone who so desires, can write Hindi on the Internet. There are other tools like Romanators which transliterate the content into other Indian scripts. So if one knows Hindi but can’t read the Devanagari script, one may get to read it in the Tamil script.

This brought about a revolution in blogosphere and soon, Hindi blogs started to grow exponentially. Hindi lovers from all over the world switched their blogs to the Hindi language; everyone got so enthusiastic that soon there emerged blog aggregators for Indian languages. A blog aggregator is a website which registers every blog and places it in its page as soon as a new post arrives. Those willing to read blogs just visit the blog aggregators and choose the blogs they need. Thus they help the blogs to attract traffic and the readers to access blogs. Currently there are many Hindi blog aggregators like blogvani, narad, chitthajagat, chittha wishva and Hindi blogs.

There are other websites like chitthacharcha and Google charcha samooh which discuss posts on several blogs giving precise information on what is going on in the Hindi blogosphere. aggregators help the new blogs greatly because when one starts, one may not have many readers. With the number of Hindi blogs rising everyday, anyone who desires to express in his / her own language has a platform. There has been a sudden rise in Hindi poems, short stories and views on society, economy and politics. There are a few theme blogs like women’s blogs where more than one blogger shares the same platform. Everyday, each and every piece of information, news, etc, is discussed and thus, a cyber coffee house sort of ambience is created. There are blogs to tell you how to use new technology and how to make your blog better; there are tips on health issues, writing a poem or a story or even a gazal.

Hindi blogs are working as an alternative media which help you in getting your views published, commented upon and appreciated. That is why many notable names from media, literature and the social sector and the masses as well just log on to any blog service and start blogging in Hindi. Trust me - it is a cool and effective way to say something.

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