Odia Loves Wikipedia

The words "Odia loves Wikipedia" written in (of course) Odia. Image in the public domain.

The words “Odia Language” written in (of course) Odia. Image in the public domain.

Odia is a 2,500 year old language native to the area of Odisha (formerly known as Orissa). The language has recently gained the status of an Indian classical language.

Recently, the Odia Wikimedia community met to celebrate the language's new status in Bhubaneswar. 

The following is an excerpt from a recent article on the Wikimedia Foundation blog, by Subhashish Panigrahi, sharing information about the Odia WIki community:

14 copyrighted books have been re-licensed under the Creative Commons license and the digitization project on Odia WikiSource was formally initiated by an indigenous educational institute, the Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) [...] KISS is going to digitize some of these books and make them available on Odia Wikisource.

An OpenType Odia Unicode font, “Odia OT Jagannatha” designed by Sujata Patel from Odialanguage.com was released under the OFL license. This is the first Odia OpenType font that the community actively tested.

A new Odia offline input tool called “TypeOdia” by Wikipedian Manoj Sahukar was also released for public distribution. DVDs containing the font, the input tool, Odia language dictionaries, offline Odia Wikipedia in KiwixWikipedia editing guide, ISCII to Unicode font converter, various free and open source software packages and Ubuntu operating system [...]

A large majority of Odia publications are not available on the internet and readers are devoid of easy accessibility. [Dr. Debiprasanna Pattanayak] discussed the process of digitization for preserving valuable books that are out of print and the old palm leaf manuscripts [...]

 The Odia fonts can be downloaded for free. The developers of the font say

We advocate for the use of Odia language in true spirit, in the domain of day-to-day administration, justice delivery, apart from the field of teaching. Besides, we have undertaken the project for developing Odia lexicon,with inclusion of typical odia version of technical words ,so as to avoid dependence on English language.

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