This is the technical description of a DBT Translation table. If you want more general information about languages and template choices, please see the list of templates.
Initially, the language table for braille translation is determined by the selected template, and may be changed using the Document / Translation Tables menu. Using those menus does not require use of the table designator. However, to switch to a different translation table partway through a file, one must enter a DBT code and the designator for the table to switch to. For switching secondary languages within a base language table, see the [lng~X] command. For switching from one base language to another, see the [lnb~...] command.
The Kiswahili (Swahili) tables support print-to-braille translation of Swahili-language literary text in contracted or uncontracted Swahili braille. English text may also be processed as a sub-language, and converted to contracted or uncontracted English braille (following British conventions). The American Computer Braille Code (CBC) is also supported.
Braille-to-print translation is supported for this language. However, braille-to-print translation may not be perfect, therefore beware that errors can occur. If you find errors or have suggestions, please send both the *.dxb and *.dxp files along with an explanation to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please be sure to include sample files!
There are no special requirements or limitations.
English text may be entered as a secondary language, and converted to contracted or uncontracted English braille. That is, the grade switches affect the translation of the English text as well as the Kiswahili (Swahili) text. In English literary text, British conventions are generally followed, to the extent that they sometimes differ slightly from American ones.
Note that in addition to the abovementioned provision for English as a "secondary language," which is supported within the Swahili table itself, it is also possible to switch to any of the available translation tables listed in DBT. (See the [lnb~...] code below.)
Computer Braille Code (CBC), as defined by the Braille Authority of North America, is supported.
In addition, it is possible to switch to any of the available translation tables listed in DBT (see the [lnb~...]code below), many of which do support various technical codes, such as for mathematics or computer notation, or which support “unified” treatment of technical notation as well as literary text in the base language associated with the table.
The following DBT translation codes are available when using the Swahili table. Any other translation codes used will be ignored, or indeed may cause unexpected results. If using an alternative translation table, i.e when switching to another base language table by means of the[lnb~...] code, please refer to the relevant topic and available codes for that table.
[/] may be embedded within letter-groups that would normally be contracted, to prevent the contraction.
[ab] is equivalent to [g2]
[cz] switches to "direct braille," wherein braille is directly represented using the North American ASCII-braille code. (This is sometimes called "no-translate" or "computer grade 0")
[eng] is equivalent to [lng~en] (the latter being the preferred form)
[g1] switches to "grade 1" (uncontracted) braille. This affects the Kiswahili (Swahili) text, and also any embedded English text.
[g2] switches to "grade 2" (contracted) braille. This is the normal mode, and to any embedded English text as well as the Kiswahili (Swahili) text.
[in] is equivalent to [g1]
[lnb~...] (for switching to another base [primary] language table)
[lng~en] switches to English language.
[lng~sw] or [lng] switches to Kiswahili (Swahili) language.
[swa] is equivalent to [lng~sw] (the latter being the preferred form)
[tx] resumes normal translation, ending "direct braille."
The table is designed to work with the following groups of characters:
All ASCII printable characters
Accented letters and punctuation marks typical of French, German, Italian, and Spanish
British pound sign (£)
The above is a general guide only (see "General Notes" section at the beginning of this document).
These tables were adapted from the then-current British tables by Duxbury Systems, Inc. in February 1988, based upon information supplied by the Africa Braille Center (ABC Project), Nairobi, Kenya. These were the first tables to allow for transcribing two different contracted languages within the same file. The development was sponsored by Sight Savers (UK) (then the Royal Commonwealth Society for the Blind). They are presently maintained by Duxbury Systems, Inc.
(Documentation reviewed: July 2010.)