I’ve been thinking a lot recently about how I should (re-)structure my Bengali study.
It’s the age old student trick of not studying for an exam until you have produced a colour-coded revision timetable, something that is usually completed the night before the first exam. But no matter.
Reading Bengali websites, and having the right fonts to allow me to do that, will eventually play a part in this. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Have you ever visit a Bengali website and seen only rows and rows of the same strange character instead of Bengali script?
Not sure what I’m talking about? The image above and the one below both come from the BBC’s Bengali pages. Compare and contrast.
Thankfully there’s a simple solution – you need to install some additional fonts onto your computer.
Trivial Bytes has a good overview of this which, although from 2006, still holds good. It includes links to Ekushey and two other alternative fonts, information on how install them and also information on how to type in Bengali once you have installed Bengali fonts. There are of course also instructions to be found on Wikipedia.
The fonts I finally got around to installing recently came from Ekushey and I use their Mac Bengali fonts (which can be found here). The Deutsche Welle site likes to two other Bengali fonts, with PC instructions, here.
Once that’s done you’ll be able to view sites produced in Bengali script, rather than an often clumsy transliterated version of the language. (For an example of clumsy transliteration just see one of my vocabulary lists.